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Posts Tagged ‘bungee jumping’
This comment amused me – the author had been reading our blog on “is this the world’s tallest bungee jump” and in her various comments made this one:
The drive to impress women with acts of sheer stupidity is universal.
The episode I saw? All about land jumping. That’s the ORIGINAL version of bungee jumping. Only it’s done from vines with very little spring. And the men jump from an eight-foot bamboo tower. Their heads actually hit the ground. Total Penis Contest. If someone plucked these guys out of the jungle, dropped them in the middle of a car dealership, and told them they could have whatever make they’d like … they’d totally choose Monster Trucks and Hummers. The winner of THIS particular contest won a handful of grass, which, judging from the looks on everyone’s faces, seemed just as impressive.
If you want to read more please follow the link below:
Good for a chuckle…
When we bungee jumped not so long go with The Big Air Company at Victoria Falls, it seemed to us extroadinary that you were putting all your faith in a bit of strapping around your ankles and a long cord of elastic. Sure, there’s the safety harness too – but it’s what’s around the ankles that, psychologically, counts, or so it seemed to us, and that seemed awfully flimsy and insubstantial.
Thanks to bubgl1.
The elastic rope first used in bungee jumping, and still used by many commercial operators, is factory-produced braided shock cord. This consists of many latex strands enclosed in a tough outer cover. This gives a harder, sharper bounce. Other operators and most southern-hemisphere operators, use unbraided cords in which the latex strands are exposed. These give a softer, longer bounce, but makes it look as though the elastic is old, weary and about to snap! It isn’t so don’t panic!
Although there is a certain elegance in using only a simple ankle attachment, accidents in which participants became detached led many commercial operators to use a body harness, if only as a backup for the ankle attachment. Climbing equipment body harnesses rather than parachute equipment are generally used. Happily The Big Air Company at Victoria Falls uses the safety harness too!
Despite the possible element of danger in jumping from a great height, several million successful jumps have taken place since 1980. This is because bungee operators rigorously conform to standards and guidelines governing jumps, such as double checking calculations and fittings for every jump. As with any sport, injuries can still occur and there have been fatalities, but not at Victoria Falls. A relatively common mistake in fatality cases is to use a cord that is too long. The cord should be substantially shorter than the height of the jumping platform to allow it room to stretch.
There are a variety of possible injuries during a jump. You can be injured if the safety harness fails, the cord elasticity is miscalculated, or the cord is not properly connected to the jump platform. In most cases this is a result of human error in the form of mishandled harness preparation. Another major injury is if the jumper experiences cord entanglement with his/her own body. Other injuries include eye trauma, rope burn, uterine prolapse, dislocations, bruises, pinched fingers and back injury. People under 40kg are not allowed to bungee jump with The Big Air Company because they are too light for the elastic which means the snap at the end of the stretch would be severe and that is when retina displacement can take place.
However, possible injury isn’t a great deterrent. The adrenaline kick from a bungee jump is so great that frequently people go back for more – and more and even more! Thanks to hollyereid for posting her jumps.
Somebody described it as ‘the ultimate leap of faith’… and it is an apt description. Extreme in the extreme, unnatural without doubt, crazy is in there somewhere, mad too – but an adrenaline thrill? … YES!!!
It is interesting how many articles I read which says – this IS the highest bungee jump. Just yesterday in the Jack Osbourne research, they claimed that the dam wall which features in the James Bond movie ‘Goldeneye’ was the highest bungee jump in the world – but I have it on good authority (Guinness Bood of Records) that Bloukrans Bridge just east of Plettenberg Bay, South Africa IS the highest jump in the world at 216m (710ft).
So what is the truth behind all these claims?
The Verzaska dam wall, the James Bond one, near Locarno, Switzerland claims to be 220m (720ft).
There is an even higher jump though, but it is a commercial one – the Macau Tower in Macau, S.A.R. China, is 233m (760ft).This jump, however, does not qualify as the world’s highest bungee as it is not strictly speaking pure bungee, but instead what is referred to as a ‘Decelerator-Descent’ jump. The bridge at Bloukrans and the Verzasca Dam jumps are pure freefall swinging bungee from a single cord, while the Macau Tower jump has a secondary cable which controls descent and trajectory, thereby failing to take the place in the record books.
Thanks to wownnames for this video.
Guinness only records jumps from fixed objects to guarantee the accuracy of the measurement. John Kockleman however recorded a 2,200-foot (670 m) bungee jump from a hot air balloon in California in 1989. In 1991 Andrew Salisbury jumped from 9,000 feet (2,700 m) from a helicopter over Cancun for a television program and with Reebok sponsorship. The full stretch was recorded at 3,157 feet (962 m). He landed safely under parachute.
One commercial jump higher than all others is at the Royal Gorge Bridge in Colorado. The height of the platform is 321 metres (1,053 ft). However, this jump is rarely available, and only as part of the Royal Gorge Go Fast Games—first in 2005, then again in 2007.
So, that’s that one sorted out. Officially it does appear that the Swiss jump is the highest and I suppose it is only a matter of time before the Guinness Book of Records updates this entry… Thank you to Wikepedia for the clarification.
So, would you travel to the ends of the world to do the ultimate bungee jump?
Then don’t forget Victoria Falls. Although no longer the highest, at 111m…
second gorge with bridge and third gorge on right
… it is still the most spectacular. The setting – plunging head first into the Batoka Gorge, must rate as one of Africa’s most iconic adventures. My vote for the best setting is still Victoria Falls.
Extreme or not?
From recent experience we would say “DEFINITELY EXTREME.” There is nothing more terrifying than standing on a seemingly fragile platform 111m above the gorge at Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe, staring down (I know I know – you should NEVER look down, but try remembering that when you have just realised what you have signed yourself up for!) at raging waters way way below whilst the realisation of what you have committed yourself to slowly sinks in.
Now this sounds like I did the bungee jump doesn’t it? I didn’t. Fortunately, and here I heaved an ENORMOUS sigh of relief, you are advised not to jump if you suffer from a weak shoulder, weak knee, a heart condition or any neurological problem. I, happily, suffer from a dislocating shoulder caused by a body-surfing accident some years ago. Phew! But I had guinea-pigs in our party who were prepared, not necessarily willingly, to have the experience for me. Nothing like sharing a pleasure vicariously…
The Victoria Falls Bungee jump, at 111m, used to be the highest commercial bungee jump in the world, but it now takes second place behind Bloukrans River Bridge in South Africa which is a 160m bungee, though the gorge itself is 216m! However, and here I may be a little biased, the Vic Falls jump is still the most spectacular and is probably (almost definitely!) the most superb setting in the world.
The bridge lies in “no mans land” between the Zimbabwean and Zambian Border Posts. To one side are the Falls themselves – one of the Seven Wonders of the World and a World Heritage Site, on the other side is the turbulent Zambezi constricted within the narrow walls of the gorge.
The Big Air Company at Victoria Falls, ably run and managed by Garth Fowler, is a wonderful place to bungee jump. It has a 100% safety record – and is open 365 days per year. There is a rigorous adherence to safety standards. You may be confident in the knowledge that you are always in a safe, professional and controlled environment – even though you appear to be surrounded by a bunch of humorists! The joking, joshing and general pulling of one’s leg never ends and certainly makes the leap easier.
Waiting on the bridge with you are several other about to be jumpers – whether it’s bungee or the swing. Some don’t look so keen, but others are already zinging with anticipation.
The guys preparing you for the jump are fantastic. There is a lot of banter, a lot of jokes, some extremely black humour as you can imagine… “when you get back, IF….” and “do you trust me? – how can you trust me if you don’t know me?”; or “do you want to know my name? I’ll tell you if you get back. Oh, you want to know now incase you don’t get back? OK, it’s Junior Mugabe – NOW do you trust me?” !!! etc. But at no time do they push you into doing something that you don’t want to do. If you get to the edge, toes gripping the platform, shoulders hunched and the whole body straining away from the drop, they talk calmly and encouragingly to you and allow you to step away from the breach without losing face.
Any crocs down there?
And just one last picture…
There will be more on this wonderful place later but thanks to Garth and The Big Air Company for allowing me to use their photographs.
A new craze has hit the UK that is quite simply a must for all adrenalin junkies. SCAD Diving offers divers the chance to experience one hundred feet of free fall whilst exerting a face shaping 4-G’s on them self. The 70mph drop shares a number of similarities with bungee jumping, except the small matter of not using a rope! With faster acceleration and a freefall experience that is 3 x longer than a bungee jump, extreme dudes won’t be hanging around this summer.
You can try out this extreme experience at 2008’s Relentless NASS Festival on the 13, 14 & 15th June.
How does it work?
SCAD is an abbreviation of Suspended Catch Air Device, and is the most realistic representation of the freefall experienced during a skydive. SCAD is completely unique and is the only system in the world that allows completely unattached, controlled free fall from 150ft. As you ascend to the dizzy heights of 150 feet you will be strapped into your safety harness by our specially trained staff whose top priority remains your safety. Once fitted the CFF harness guarantees the correct body position is maintained at all times, so you fall freely and fairly. Then the countdown begins; 3… 2… 1 and release! You will drop freely through the air reaching velocity of up to 70mph, whilst experiencing up to 4-G’s. As well as higher speeds and longer freefall time, SCAD is also far more comfortable when disembarking. There is no landing impact or recoil as with the bungee and you will land comfortably in a colossal net supported by huge air tubes, which feels like dropping into a giant cushion. After landing in the net, the SCAD mechanism gently lowers to the ground for you to exit with an incredible sense of achievement and a long lasting adrenaline buzz.
A big shout of thanks goes out to the Exelement blog for bringing this to our attention – well done guys, it sure looks well worth a go!
Continuing my discourse on ‘the neglected beauty spots of war torn countries’, there is one country which will very definitely be on this list one day and that is Zimbabwe. Extreme vacation indeed at the moment, but dream location one day… Not exactly war-torn – but certainly terrorized.
Having said that, we leave for Zimbabwe in 2 weeks.
Foolish, do I hear you say? Well, we booked the tickets months ago and we expected the elections to be well and truly over by now – but we didn’t count on a despot refusing to leave. Nor did we count on being in the country for the re-elections which are bound to be stolen.
We hummed and hah-ed for weeks. Should we or shouldn’t we? But, and for any of you out there who might have already visited the country – it’s an opportunity we didn’t want to forfeit.
Zimbabwe is god’s own country. It’s a beautiful place with a beautiful climate full of beautiful people – this madness is government driven and wholly against the nature of most Zimbabweans.
And as for extreme sport opportunities – it has it all.
You can canoe down the mighty Zambezi and revel in the absolute unspoiled beauty of the river and its scenic banks. Enjoy the adrenaline thrill of a hippo popping up beside you (terrifying if they pop up under you) and the stomach clenching fear of the monster crocodiles that are everywhere. Be awestruck by the wildlife on the shore – the thrill of hiding under an overhanging bank whilst a breeding herd of elephants and their cartoonish offspring clown around in the water, gasp at the pride of lion lounging on a bank with their huge paws dangling over the edge, hold your breath while an old dugga boy (buffalo) takes exception to your passing and mock charges – or at least you hope it will only be a mock charge. And marvel at the beauty of the impala, kudu, water buck, zebra and all the other animals that you will see as you drift with the current.
Be thrilled by the night sounds as you camp along the way – the roar of the lion – this has to be one of the most spine tinglingly beautiful sounds in the world. The giggle of the hyena. And all the other quiet rustles that fill the night.
Our iconic picture was taken on the banks of the Zambezi whilst planning the following day.
Follow that up with a trip to the Falls (Victoria Falls). Although Victoria Falls constitute neither the highest nor the widest waterfall in the world, the claim that it is the largest is based on a width of 1.7 kilometers (1 mile) and height of 108 meters (360 ft), forming the largest sheet of falling water in the world. You will be awe struck by the sheer unspoiled spendour of the Falls themselves, the original name – Mosi oa Tunya – “The Smoke That Thunders” – is evocative of the whole atmosphere of the place.
And here you have all the toys. White water rafting, river boarding, kayaking, bungee jumps, abseiling, jet boating, helicopter flips, micro light flights, elephant back trails, horse trails, upper Zambezi canoeing, Zambezi River cruises, fishing trips, walking trails, game drives. Spoiled for choice.
Zimbabwe’s national parks are unspoiled and packed with game. I think, but I might be wrong, that it is one of the last places left where you are allowed to get out and walk wherever you want as long as you respect the way of the wildlife – and if you get eaten by something it’s your own silly fault! They are also free of mass tourism and when you see a lion kill you are able to enjoy it on your own without a dozen other vehicles rushing up to join in the fun. I suppose one has to thank the present government’s mismanagement for this exclusivity!
The Eastern Highlands have mountains and scenery that resemble Scotland – Nyanga, and a more rugged beauty – Chimanimani. Sandwiched between these two is the Bvumba – a misty, mountainous wonderland. Mountain hikes, rock climbing and trout fishing are regular pastimes here.
How can one give up a trip like this?
And if you finally despair of finding any food in the country you can always cross over to Mozambique and catch some fish for yourself. The deep sea fishing is incredible. Here’s one of the monsters we caught last year…
That’s a Wahu – one of the fastest fish in the ocean. The others on the ground are either the same, bonita or barracuda.
Watch this space for regular updates on our trip. I just hope we have enough electricity (another thing in short supply) to send out a post or two…