Ken Stamps spotted a business idea thousands of miles from his Michigan home, in rainforest-rich Costa Rica, where a popular tourist attraction sends travelers soaring through the treetops on a pulley.
“There are far fewer Costa Rica-type canopy tours in the U.S.,” said Stamps. In contrast, most American zip-lining companies are at manmade attractions, such as theme parks or water parks and not in a tree canopy.
After 27 years in the architecture and engineering industry near Detroit, Stamps was hungry for a career change. In 2009, he launched — with partners Sam and John Walker, a father-son team — Navitat Canopy Adventures, a zip-lining-tour company in densely wooded areas it leases in Asheville, N.C.; and Wrightwood, Calif.