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How I Overcame My Fear of Heights!

29th March 2018

How I Overcame My Fear of Heights!

I like to think of myself as fairly open-minded however when it comes to heights I am a full-fledged, self-confessed scaredy cat! In all of my 25 years of life I had never managed to get over my fear of heights but a day at Altitude Adventure completely changed the game!  

How did you develop your fear of heights?

Let me take you back to when I first realised that heights and I didn’t mix… When I was about 10 years old I went on a trip with my scouts group which was far from fun for me to say the least. It was the typical sort of outdoorsy stuff… zip lines, giant swings, rafting etc. I’ve always found myself a bit of an adrenaline junkie with a need for speed and a love for adventurous activities which is why it has always stumped me as to why when it comes to heights I just tend to freeze. Anyway, the first activity on the scouts’ trip happened to be abseiling, I began to make my way up what felt like countless flights of stairs to the top of the abseiling tower. I eventually got to the very top and that’s when I realised how terrified I was. I was completely daunted looking around; all I remember is looking down at my friends who resembled ants from where I was standing. I squeezed my eyes closed tight and wished with everything I had that I could just teleport back down to the ground. I rushed back down the stairs of the tower in hysterics and I haven’t faced my fear of heights again since… well not until a recent day out with my family at Altitude Adventure.  

My sister had invited all of the family to Altitude Adventure for my niece’s 7th birthday party. At the time I didn’t ask many questions about what we would be doing that day, I was more excited that we could get everyone together for a day trip (quality time with the family is quite a rarity nowadays with everyone being so busy) I eagerly accepted her invitation and made my way down to Altitude Adventure.  

What was Altitude Adventure Like?

You would have thought that I would have known what kind of activity we would be doing from the name (altitude was a bit of a clue) However it wasn’t until I got there and saw a huge high ropes course when it actually dawned on me. I could hear heaps of laughter and everyone seemed smiley, they didn’t look scared at all! Unfortunately for me I was still skeptical and I had already decided that I would be sitting this one out. We were greeted by two instructors who were very friendly, they managed to get everyone involved and even managed to convince grandma to have a go! They told me that Altitude Adventure is one of the world’s safest high ropes systems. Once I saw the harness track system I felt much more comfortable, the kind instructor even got up on the course and showed me how safe it was to make your way round the course! 

I held my hands up, (literally) and allowed the instructors to get me harnessed up, they kept reassuring me that I was 100% safe and I had nothing to worry about. As they went through their safety briefing I got a much better understanding of how the course worked and by this point I was sure I wouldn’t fall. The only thing now was actually getting up the stairs to the first platform. After the instructors double checked my harness and connected me to the track, it was all down to me. I clung onto my slingline with all the force I could muster as I ventured up the stairs to the first platform. Once I’d made it, I was shocked as to how high it appeared but the view from even the first platform was breathtaking enough distract me from my fear for a few seconds. Imagine looking down on to a Jurassic world complete with animatronic dinosaurs!  On return to reality I looked around and opted for the easiest element out of my options, the course is designed in a way that you can choose which elements you want to tackle (great idea for the more skeptical climbers). I approached the rope bridge and took a deep breath and proceeded to grab the rope railings, honestly anyone from the ground would’ve thought it was my 7th birthday the way I screamed but I braved it nonetheless, I felt quite silly once my sister shouted to me to “man up and stop scaring the kids!” Taking my first step onto the bridge gave me the confidence to breathe and continue across, with each step it became easier – I soon realised the bridge wouldn’t collapse beneath by weight and as my adrenaline started to kick in. My confidence grew the more time I spent up there. Soon enough I was into the swing of things and having so much of a laugh my niece even managed to get me up to the top level! This was a massive deal for me as it is quite a long way down from the top but the different elements are such good fun it distracts from the height. Funnily enough my favourite element ended up being the tightrope. Even though it was a challenge being so wobbly, my niece and grandma stood on the platform at the end cheering me on! It turned out to be a great day, everyone had bucket loads of fun and my sister even bought me a glass of wine over at the restaurant afterwards to settle my nerves. Thanks Altitude Adventure for helping me overcome my fear, I will most definitely be back!