Bungyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy…. That was what I planned to yell as I was falling…
But what came out was more like… Aaaaaaarrrrgh… Wooo… Wooo… Fuck… Woo hoo… The worst bit was actually the 2nd free fall, immediately after the first rebound. Just when I was enjoying the peaceful feeling of weightlessness (because I was ‘falling’ upwards) on the rebound I started falling again.
Then after releasing my legs (rather elegantly, if I do say so myself) and securely being winched up, I just sat and enjoyed the view. Stepping back onto the platform, the most amazing feeling of euphoria that lasted for the next few hours. 7 seconds of initial free fall, and under 2 minutes in total, but the bungy jump experience was amazing. [The choice of playing Johnny Cash while we were doing it was also pretty brilliant! “I fell into a burning ring of fire…I went down down down and the flames went higher…”] I don’t know if was as ‘life changing’ for me as it is to some people, but I definitely proved to myself that I can overcome emotion and human instinct (which, as far as I know, is definitely to avoid jumping off high platforms) and base my actions on rational thought. Statistically, bungy jumping is about as dangerous as getting into a car and driving 100 miles, which people happily do all the time.
Was I scared? Hell yeah! But actually, most of my terror was long before the actual jump. When I started looking it up (while planning my New Zealand trip), I literally (and I mean literally) got short of breath, panicky and had bad dreams for all of two weeks.
Strangely, I must have processed it all through my mind before I got to NZ because, barring a slight nervousness, I was pretty calm about it right to the point I shuffled (hard to walk normally with your feet tied together!) onto the ledge. I’m sure there are some lessons in that. But what I know for sure is that I’m glad I did it (and got the t-shirt).
Here’s a video of the entire thing.
You might have noticed that I had a camera in my hand as I jumped. Here’s my video from a first person perspective if you want to do a virtual bungy jump…
See the smile and elation on my face at the end? Just do it! The Nevis Bungy (just outside of Queenstown) is the highest bungy jump in New Zealand and Australia at 134m. Some other thoughts:
- The first modern bungy jump was done from the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol, where I live
- There’s a lot of ‘size comparisons’ for the ‘highest bungy/bungee jump’. From what I’ve gathered, the height only refers to how high up the jump platform is, not the actual stretch length. Looking at jump videos, I compared the Bloukrans Bungy (South Africa) proclaiming a height of 216m with the Nevis bungy I did at a height of 134m. The Bloukrans seemed to have a free fall (before reversing direction) of 6.9 seconds, compared to my jump at 6.7 seconds.
- Just do it!