I became part of a group called Pompey bloggers a while ago, which is an amazing group that connects bloggers around Portsmouth to meet up and go to events together. Even though I had been a part of it for a while, I had never gone to any of the events to meet any of them. However, this time I did.
We were amazingly invited to visit Go Ape in Southampton by Paul to have some crazy monkey fun. A couple of years ago I had previously come to Go Ape but I got stuck on the third course and freaked out a little. I still completed it all eventually but I honestly wasn’t certain if I loved it or not. This is why I was excited to be invited down as I really wanted to change my mind on my last experience.
There are five courses to complete and they are quite long especially when you go as a big group as you all have to move around it together. There are easy and hard routes to take but this definitely is subjective to what you think is easy or hard as a harder route might be easier for someone else, but I think it’s great there is an option.
This picture was captured by one of the other bloggers of me crossing a bridge, clinging on for dear life because I can honestly say I was so terrified by the height, thinking I couldn’t do it. But I could of course. I think even if you don’t like heights like I don’t you will honestly have a good time and you feel awesome after for completing it. One thing that actually did spur me on was that there was a dad with his two young daughters, the oldest having to be max 12 years old just streaming through it. So that really encouraged me because if they could do it then so could I haha. Those rings you can see in the picture is where I got stuck last time. You can obviously guess I didn’t go that way.
I didn’t end up doing the final one this time as it did chuck down a bit and I was exhausted because I’m not going to lie it’s a bit of a work out swinging in the trees but I didn’t feel as though I missed out as I’ve done it before and I’m sure I’ll go back.
Before you go on, there is an instructor who gives you information to read (Honestly read it!) that tells you all about safety requirements and then an instructor will greet you and train you with your harness and show you how it works at each station. They really encourage you to read all the signs and if you’re not totally comfortable then you don’t pass into the woodland area behind. It’s so well set out when you arrive and honestly the people that work there are super nice.
There is a practice one just before the first one so the instructor can make sure you attach yourself correctly, double checking you know what you are doing. On this one you are barely off the ground but it allows you to sit in your harness which means you can really settle your racing thoughts down reassuring you that you will not fall. (It will not completely settle your mind, well it didn’t with me).
The hardest part for me was the ladders at the beginning of each stance. Honestly trying to pull yourself up on what seems like an unstable rope ladder is hard but I managed to pull myself up there. A little trick that I did was singing to myself in my head as it distracted me from leaving the ground and entering what seemed like the sky. At the end of each stance is a zip wire, which was my favourite part. If I know I’m falling I’m ok. These were so much fun! They get higher and higher throughout each stance which is exciting.
The whole experience was amazing as I met so many people that I hadn’t met before and I had a great time as everyone was basically forced to bond quickly as we had to spur everyone on. I think this kind of thing is really good for team/ work building and bonding or family active day outs. To be honest, like I said before it is really suitable for anyone even if you have a fear it will conquer it.
I’d recommend you visit your local Go Ape and definitely if you’re near Southampton visit that one as it was such an experience.
I urge you to check out my other Pompey bloggers posts for their take on it and check out the Go Ape website if you want more information about pricing and times etc.
Hope you have fun swinging!