Getting home from the wedding shortly before 7am was not only a sign of an awesome party, but also a sign that I would not be emerging from my duvet any time before the early afternoon. Hats off to those on the 11am flight home. I expect you were thrilled with your 8 o’clock alarm!
After a bit of a lazy day we headed to Vila Preteren (try and say that correctly and you wont even be close, despite it looking very pronounceable) for supper, where we dined by candle light with the dulcet tones of piano and violin live from the riverbank. Food and company both smashing but it wasn’t a late one as it began to rain and we all felt ready for bed, especially with a morning of canyoning ahead.
So at 8am our alarms went off and we geared ourselves up, both physically and mentally, for canyoning. I didn’t really know what I was in for (which is probably why I didn’t flee in the opposite direction) other than that there was a 10m jump, that we could do from 6m if we preferred. 6 metres? Yeah sure, no biggy, “lets do this!” (I said, somewhat more enthusiastically than I felt)
We arrived at the site and kitted up. Ever so sexy.
That’s where the photos end thankfully, but you may still want to know a bit about canyoning. So here goes. We wore full, padded wetsuit and wetsuit socks, plus a helmet and harness. That’s where safety procedures started and finished. We began with about half an hour of steep uphill climb, knowing that what goes up must come down. After a quick demo of the ropes and clips we were off.
A nice little traverse around a slippery rock face before being strapped in for our first abseil down to a ledge.
“Yes, yes, okay jump off now”
“What? Jump?? Into the water? No way. It looks far too cold…and far away..”
In we went, sinking what felt like several metres before being popped up by the buoyancy of the wetsuit. Water in every face hole, I came up coughing and spluttering and shaking from the shock of the icey-cold water that was now running into my wetsuit. The only benefit of being near the front of the pack was not knowing what to expect and therefore having little time to fear it! This spate of abseil, creep over rocks, JUMP continued for the remainder of our 2 hour experience, and included two 6metre jumps, eek! I have to say I bailed out on the second as you had to take a bit of a leap of faith jumping over jagged rocks to get to the water. Plus my shoulder felt really stiff from the other jumps as you hit the water at quite a pace so it can jar any body parts that aren’t tucked in enough. I abseiled down instead but still had to plunge into the cold water at the end.
Overall I enjoyed it but I don’t love lack of control and I don’t really feel the need to prove how brave I am, so….probably won’t be doing it again in a hurry.