Walkabout: Bungee Jumping at Rapid Falls Sagana
Bungee jumping has been on my bucket list since I knew what it was. It’s actually quite funny that it even featured on the list because I am terrified of heights. I can’t stand on the edge of a rooftop and I can’t even jump off a high diving board, but bungee jumping I can do? Well, for my birthday this year I did!
Where and how much is it and how do you get there?
Bungee jumping is offered at Rapid Falls Camp in Sagana and is Ksh 5,500 per person. The camp is off the Nairobi-Nyeri highway. It is about a 2 hour drive from Nairobi with another half hour drive to the camp once you branch off the highway. The road to the camp is a murram road which is something to keep in mind when choosing your mode of transport.
What are the logistics?
Bungee jumping is offered on Saturday and Sunday afternoons between 2pm and 5pm. They are really strict on time so it’s advised to be there by 2 sharp.
It’s a pretty athletic activity so you will need to make sure your level of fitness is okay. I did a lot of cardio and stretches the week of and before I jumped. The release form that you sign also mentions that it is not advisable to jump if you have a back or heart condition. They also won’t let you jump if you weigh over 100kgs. Dress in athleisure wear and make sure your shoes have a rubber sole or you can comfortably climb in them.
The bungee jumping site
Where you park and where the bungee jumping site is about a 10 to 15 minute hike. I must admit that I was more winded from the hike than I had anticipated. The hike features crossing the Sagana River on a suspended bridge that reminded me how scared of heights I am and had me reconsidering my bungee jumping decision.
Other bungee jumping sites I’ve seen from around the world are from a high point like a cliff but the one at Sagana is a 60 metre crane that you have to climb and then jump off of. Looking up at the crane, I couldn’t imagine how for the life of me I was going to get up there.
I got to watch a couple of people jump before it was my turn to go and everyone looked scared, with one lady taking almost twenty minutes before jumping. When it was finally my turn to go, I signed the release form and they put the harness on me.
The ladder climb
As the person ahead of you is on the platform about to jump, you start your 60 metre ladder climb to the top. The harness is connected to a wire on the ladder that makes sure you don’t fall off the ladder. The climb up is something else! It took almost 10 minutes to get to the top and it was incredibly unnerving. I had to take deep breaths and focus on each wrung to avoid looking down and losing my courage. I was lucky though, as I couldn’t go up with my glasses I couldn’t tell exactly how high up I was. The climb up is also quite a workout as you can imagine and by the time I got up there, my mouth was uncomfortably dry.
The bungee jump
Andreas, the proprietor and instructor welcomes you and then proceeds to put you on a different harness and give you instructions on how to move from the ladder into the cage. It was scary hauling myself into the cage but I did a good job following instructions. Once properly harnessed for the jump, he took me through safety routine. Basically, to jump like I’m diving into a pool to avoid whiplash, keep my hands away from the rope at all times to avoid rope burns and try to calmly wait for pickup from shore after the jump.
It took about 5 minutes to jump and I actually requested for a gentle push. He did a countdown and I closed my eyes ready to be pushed and ended up jumping on my own. The feeling of falling was shocking to my body. My brain knew what was happening but my body couldn’t believe it so it took me a couple of seconds to react, and by then I was being sprung back up like a rag doll screaming for Jesus. My heart was in my mouth and I was so dizzy by the time I stopped moving.
After being lowered low enough to touch the water, I was handed a rope and pulled to shore and laid down on a mat to recover. I wasn’t as dizzy as I thought I’d be and recovered after a few minutes.
Would I do it again? I’m not sure. It’s scary as hell. Still, I am proud of myself for taking the leap and doing something I thought I would be too afraid to. Also, what a great way to mark a new year. Ticks bungee jumping off bucket list!http://www.mwendengao.com/2017/04/27/walkabout-bungee-jumping-rapid-falls-sagana/Food and TravelBungee jumping,Extreme sports,Kenya,Rapid Falls Camp,Sagana