Whilst Queenstown depicts calmness and untouched scenery, it is also home to adrenaline junkies! Indeed I refer to the highest Bungy jump platform in New Zealand, The Nevis at the small matter of 500 feet tall. The build up to the dropping platform begins at ground level in the town centre and you have several hours to manage your nerves, excitement or a combination of both.
After registration has taken place at the AJ Hackett headquarters in the centre of Queenstown, it is time to board the bus as you begin your pulsating climb to the plunge. On arrival at the Bungy site, many participants were displaying their pre-jump nerves by struggling to get themselves into their jump suit to the extent that it drew comparisons with Inspector Clouseau’s mannerisms from the Pink Panther movies. Thereafter it was time to take the short cable car ride with my group to the jumping platform. Whilst I was getting strapped up by my instructor, he informed me that he was still feeling ‘high’ from his excursions the previous night. Given that I had a feeling of ‘the next victim’ as I came closer to the dropping platform, his comments led to immediate concern in my mind as my safety (life) was in his hands. However just moments later I suddenly switched on again and noted his ‘dark humour’. Indeed I grinned back at him and started to feel at ease somewhat.
Thereafter it was time to hide my nerves from the cameras as the first of many photo clicks began. This was the last time to potentially turn back and be left wondering what I may have missed out on. As I tip toed towards the edge, the true beauty of Queenstown dawned upon me. There was a vast mountain in the distance that was basked in sunshine. However it was more than just merely a landmark as it would form an important aspect of my jump. My instructor told me to use it as a reference point and then spread my arms out. And down I went in epic free-fall whilst screaming at increasing decibels. Less than 10 seconds later I made my first of several bounces, which I thought gave the indication that the most daunting part was over. However that was all too trivial a thought.
As I started my ascent back up to the sanity of the jumping platform, I should have been facing head up. However, the lever on my jump suit that would enable me to do this was proving difficult to deploy. As such my journey upwards still gave me the sensation of feeling downwards as I remained upside down. Suffice to say that the instructors who were responsible for pulling me back up found my predicament hilarious to the extent that they kept me hanging for a few seconds, and in turn I experienced a greater head rush. The irony of it all was that the views remained breathtaking regardless of my body position.
Whilst the Nevis Bungy activity is slightly on the expensive side at NZ $275 per person, you can say that you have experienced Queenstown in its entirety by fulfilling this obligation to jump. Furthermore, on completion you are provided with a certificate and t-shirt to proudly and continuously display your achievement to the outside world!