A skydive has always appealed to me however I was less enthusiastic about a Bungy Jump. It wasn’t that I was scared but it just didn’t look as fun as a skydive, It didn’t last as long and I was doubtful that falling then being yanked back up by your ankles would be a comfortable experience. However, I came to New Zealand with an open mind and decided I would do it if the opportunity arose. Less then a week after arriving I was buying a prepaid activity package which included 4 activities, 3 of which were Black Water Rafting, Skydiving and a Maori experience, activities that topped my New Zealand Bucket List. The fourth was a Nevis Bungy Jump. I decided it counted as the opportunity I was relying on…
I wasn’t nervous as I booked the date for my Bungy, nor when I watched other people do the Kawarau Bridge which stands at 43m. It was then a couple of days until my jump date. I sat eating breakfast with a few friends that morning including a guy who was also doing his jump in the time slot immediately after mine. However, whilst he was panicking I felt very calm and a little excited.
It was an hour drive to the Nevis Bungy and we were kitted out in our harnesses and went out to watch a few jumpers while everyone else got ready. It was here that I really started to notice how high this particular Bungy was. Standing at 134m high it’s New Zealands highest Bungy Jump and provides over 8 seconds of free fall. You really have to see it to appreciate how long that is.
To get over to the Bungy launch pod you ride in a suspended cable car to the metal pod that suspends in the middle of the incredibly deep canyon. It was on this ride over that the nerves start to kick in..hard. I then realise in the excitement I had forgotten to bring my inhaler over from the main building and the crew decided they’ll go get it as a precaution. After all by this point I have an incredibly dry mouth and feel like I may just work myself up to an asthma attack in panic! People around me are getting the foot straps on and one by one are taking their leaps. Meanwhile, I am freaking out and scared out of my wits!
Due to the delay of having to get my inhaler I lose my spot in the order and am bumped to the back meaning I watch everyone else in my jump group go before me including one crazy girl who had decided she would do it with only a pair of undies on! And before you ask- No this didn’t even entitle her to a free jump. I do find though that I have waited so long I start to calm back down a bit. That is until my name is called…
I sit in the intimidating dentist like chair scared shitless and not quite registering the things he is hooking onto me. When he asks me to smile for a photo I grimace, sure that my terror is apparent in my expression. As I am led to the little diving board I have to ask for a minute before he shouts the countdown as o need to mentally prepare myself as o am determined I will jump at the end of the first countdown. I tell him I’m ready and I hear the phrase I’ve listened to 15 times whilst I’ve been waiting… 3…2…1…BUNGY!!!
I had always thought I would go full throttle and do the arms out and big leap, and I tried, I really did however my legs just gave way I guess and I managed to fall upright and remain upright for a considerable amount of the jump, all whilst screaming of course. It’s a long free fall though, long enough for me to scream, stop, take a breath and still be in free fall. The bounce was weightless and it was a lot of fun. The feeling is very hard to describe but it is most definitely exhilarating! On the second bounce I gave the strap attached to my ankles a couple of almighty tugs as instructed and on the second yank I managed to release my feet and was reeled back up.
My legs were jelly when I tried to stand but it was a truly exhilarating experience. I would definitely do another Bungy jump and maybe I’ll even manage a proper jump as opposed to a fall.