The beginning of September saw myself and six friends do one of the coolest things I think I will probably ever do.
It was my best friend Alice’s idea to sign up to Zip World, home to the longest zip wire in Europe and located in the beautiful Penrhyn Quarry in North Wales. We stayed in a lovely little cottage for four fantastic days in Bethesda village, only a short distance from the seaside town of Bangor.
With Busted’s back catalogue and the Frozen soundtrack as musical accompaniments, our adventure began on a sunny Thursday afternoon. Minor departure delays came as a result of my incompetence and failure to remember important items like my phone, purse, house keys etc. Suffice to say I wasn’t exactly the most popular member of the group at the beginning of our journey.
Friday morning saw us experience an undesirable combination of nerves and tiredness from the previous night’s antics. It was upon our arrival to the Zip World site that butterfly sensations began flapping at maximum velocity. (Probably the single most ridiculous sentence I’ve ever written). The zip line was really bloody high.
We were weighed, instructed to dress up in our safety gear – goggles, helmets and all – and headed up to the first of our zip line rides. The ‘Little Zipper’ stood at around 72 ft and intended to give us a mere taster of the full experience (yes, really). Rather than sitting upwards as you would with a regular playground zip wire, the harness was hooked up so we were laying flat, offering an almost authentic sense of ‘flying’.
The anticipation for the 500 ft ‘Big Zipper’ was painfully long after the incredible adrenaline rush of the smaller one. After being strapped up we were left dangling at the top for what seemed like an eternity as the instructor waited for the previous person to reach the other side of the line.
A countdown finally commenced and we quickly found ourselves shooting down the wire at around 80 mph, cutting through the air above the picturesque view of the quarry beneath. The scenery was utterly, and almost literally, breathtaking. It truly gave you a buzz like no other.
I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t absolutely terrifying, but it was without a doubt one of the best experiences I have ever had. I recommend it to anyone who believes they too can face their fear and take on the challenge – I know I would do it all again in a heartbeat.
Have a look for yourself here at www.zipworld.co.uk