Exhilarating is one way of describing just how great it was. It was the first activity I did when we arrived in Galway. Although we were tired from the early start and long bus journey, we all woke up as we put on the cold, damp wetsuits. Lovely.
The group was split into two and we set off on a bus into the hills to the area where the activity takes place. Even the bus journey was fun. We were driving along the road when suddenly we took a route, presumably a short cut, through fields spotted with rocks then back onto a lane to where we parked the bus.
We hopped out of the bus and the cold wind hit us. My first thought was “What are we getting ourselves in to…” but the thought soon disappeared as the two instructors told us to get into the water and walk up along the stream. They also added “And don’t be screaming about the cold, you’ll get over it lads”.
Yes the water was cold, but I’ve experienced worse. We walked up along the stream, laughing and joking as we watched each other slip, slide and fall on algae-covered rocks.
We came to our first jump. Some people were a bit apprehensive about it but the rest of us just jumped right in. The rush of adrenaline when you jump is indescribable! The instructors were really funny and spent their time cracking jokes and getting to know our names. As we jumped and were mid-air they would sometimes even shout “No! Not there…” as a joke so that we might get a fright, thinking we had jumped into the wrong area of water. Maybe some people didn’t find it funny…but I did!
As we went along to the different jumps, they got increasingly higher. This challenged some people who were scared of heights. We all encouraged each other but nobody was forced if they didn’t want to.
We then headed back the way we came, only then realising that the water had us no longer being able to feel our toes and hands. Everyone complaining of the same strange, cold sensation in our heads, almost like a brain-freeze, from submerging ourselves under the cold water when we jumped in.
The bus journey back was not quite as cheerful as the cold really set in. But we still joked around and sang along to the radio. It was by far the best activity and a fantastic way to start our Galway experience.