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OutdoorNI Does Tree Top Adventure

Posted on March 11, 2011 @ 5:55 PM in Adventure

Welcome to our new regular blog feature ‘OutdoorNI.com Does…’.  This is our chance to showcase the exciting outdoor activities available in Northern Ireland.

For our first blog feature ‘OutdoorNI Does… Tree Top Adventure’ we sent out Chris Scott to Northern Ireland’s first tree top adventure course at The Jungle NI.  Chris was chosen as he has possibly the worst head for heights in the team so if he could get around the course then anybody can.

 

Tree Top Adventure Course

 

This ‘OutdoorNI Does…’ assignment initially seemed more like a punishment for me than a pleasure.  My head for heights is atrocious – my knees go wobbly walking up a flight of stairs never mind a tree top adventure course.

Through fear of not being able to complete the course and for some encouragement I brought along my wife and two mates, Kerry and Ali who were across from Manchester for the weekend.  At least one of these 25-30 year olds should be able to get around the course to give me enough material to write the blog.

A 50 minute drive from Belfast brought us to The Jungle NI on the outskirts of Moneymore. On arrival you are immediately caught up in the atmosphere of the place. Folk hurtling down the hill in zorbing balls, the clattering noise of paintball guns going off in the distance and the cool young staff dressed in the combat trousers and black hoodies excites from the moment you open the car door. 

We were met by Hugh our instructor for the day, who before we knew it, had us fully kitted out with harnesses and gloves and on the practice course.  This gets you used to the ingenious safety system which means it is impossible to unclip yourself from the safety line – this was not only great peace of mind for me but more so for parents bringing their kids along.  Hugh told us this system was the only one of its type in the country.

After a quick practice it was time to get off terra firma and within seconds we were taking on the first obstacle.  We didn’t have a great start, despite Hugh’s relaxed persuasive manner Catherine (the wife) quickly appointed herself official photographer! The height too much she returned to the ground but was still part of the group as she watched the excitement from the trails through the wood.

All of a sudden I was lead man meaning I took on each new obstacle as it arose.  As I slowly edged across each obstacle, Kerry continued to show me up by following as if she was walking to the shops and Ali the same.

Tree Top Adventure Course

The innovative obstacles which total 40 in all, provide a different challenge each time.  If I ever had trouble working out what to do next, the ever helpful Hugh was on hand to point out the way – which was much more helpful than the constant laughter at my misfortune from Ali and Kerry – with friends like these…

As we progressed through the course my confidence grew and grew and I was determined to get to the 200 metre long zip line at the end, it also meant I was now able to reply to some of Ali and Kerry’s constant banter.

At heights of up to 70ft the rope bridges, tight ropes, cargo nets, swings and many more obstacles of various other shapes and sizes were conquered one by one until we reached the zip line.  By the end we were pretty tired; the cargo nets in particular look much easier on the war movies on TV than in real life and would prove tricky for some.  Although I was probably holding on 10 ten times tighter than required!! 

However adrenaline is a great motivator and we reached the zip line“…you just kinda lie back and go…” were the instructions from Hugh as he clipped me on.  The zip wire blast was top class, after the initial adrenaline surge I was able to relax and enjoy the sensation of flying through the air.

 

Zip Line

Ali and Kerry followed and I prepared myself to head home delighted that I had put myself out of my comfort zone and in hindsight enjoyed every minute.

As we congregated at the finish Hugh asked would we like a go at the ‘King Louis Descent’ – seeing the puzzled look on our faces he explained simply “…I clip this hook onto your back and you just kinda jump off. The Powerfan will stop you before you hit the ground – it’s class craic.”  Class craic indeed!? – I began looking for my exit. One at a time Ali and Kerry jumped from about 35ft, face forwards towards to ground, each time landing on their feet with a scream of delight. 

Peer pressure is a wonderful thing – how could I go home without doing it.  After more words of kind persuasion from Hugh and not so kind words from Ali – I leaped off – this is as close to a parachute jump as I’ll ever get – what a feeling.  I wouldn’t be queuing up to do it again but glad I’ve done it once.

 

Tree Top Adventure Course

All in all a great few hours spent – we were well looked after and it is great that the Jungle NI have brought yet another unique activity to Northern Ireland.

We were tired at the end but the whole experience was very much the topic of conversation over dinner and beers later that night. 

Right to Reply:

Sarah-Lousie Cairmichael – Jungle NI

As of March 19th we no longer have the huge cargo net at the Tarzan Swing  in which many people had problems climbing up, Instead this has been replaced by a smaller net in which you swing in to then climb to the side where you can step on to a platform and climb up the ladder (I have attached a picture of the new Platform). Also we have added an additional bridge to the last few elements where customers who do not want to or have the time to do the whole course can step on here and do the last few elements with the zip line and the king Louis descent, we have named this Mowgli’s Adventure (£20pp)  compared to the whole course package which is our Tarzan’s Adventure (£35pp)

Factfile

Venue:

Tree Top Adventure Course
The Jungle NI
Moneymore
County Londonderry

www.thejungleni.com

Cost: £35pp

Session duration: 2-3 hours depending on your ability and how adventurous your feeling that day!

No minimum numbers required, 15 people maximum in an hourly slot. Booking Essential

Suitable for:  There are no age restrictions but all participants must be over the height of 4ft 8" (1.42m)

Check out OutdoorNI.com's High ropes & Zip Line Section 

 


Chris Scott
Chris Scott

When not boring everyone about his little kids’ latest antics, Chris enjoys sailing and cycling, if only to offset his love of eating out and Marlborough Cabernet Sauvignon..

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