Thursday, 18 July 2019

GO APE, TEMPLE NEWSAM (LEEDS) REVIEW

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Last Saturday I was lucky enough to be invited to try the Go Ape Tree Top Challenge just on the outskirts of Leeds city centre in Temple Newsam. For the last couple of years I've been much more of a 'yes' person so I couldn't turn this opportunity down (particularly as my mum has done it before, if she can do it - I definitely can!). I've seen Go Ape challenges in a few forests up north (namely in Sherwood Pines and Dalby Forest) but never tried it before so I was really excited to see what it was like. 

Go Ape is actually for all ages with a minimum height of 1 metre as there's two different adventures; The Treetop Adventure is a great family course where you can choose your own route depending on how much challenge you want; there are different crossings and bridges as well as a zip wire to the bottom so there's definitely something for varying levels of daringness! 

The Treetop Challenge is the ultimate experience, and what we went for. It definitely requires an element of bravery and endurance as the courses are more challenging and physically demanding with 50ft high platforms, long zip lines and the opportunity to do a Tarzan swing from a 36ft platform into a rope ladder. Definitely for you if you want exhilaration, fun and challenge all rolled into one!



Having looked online before we arrived, we decided to buy a pair of fingerless gloves from the Go Ape shop just to make sure we were both comfortable as we were climbing around; we also made sure to wear long trousers so that our legs were protected, especially at the bottom of the zip wires! I can definitely recommend either taking gloves with you or buying some there because we heard others on the course saying they wish they had bought some when they saw ours because you do spend quite a lot of time gripping, as you can probably imagine.


Once we had got our gloves and signed the waiver, we were taken over by our instructor to get our harnesses fitted. From the word go I was really impressed by the enthusiasm shown by all the staff on site - they were also very knowledgable and made us feel very at ease when explaining the risks but how we could make sure we were safe at all times. 

Before going 50ft up we were taken on a practice run closer to ground which got us to grips with how the wires work that kept us safe. We were taught out to manoeuvre around the course and had a bit of a practice run on a small zip wire. 



(above photos are of the Treetop Adventure)

Once we had completed the short guidance trail we were let loose on the 4 courses (there's usually 5 but one was closed); connected on by the member of staff at the bottom we were then left to make our way 50ft up! 

If you watched my instagram story on the day you'll have seen some of the challenges and crossings we faced up there (it's now on my highlights if you'd like to take a look). It was honestly the most enjoyable, exhilirating experience I've had since I did a bungee jump a few years ago; it was hard work, don't get me wrong but the feeling of achievement at the bottom of each of the zip lines was amazing! 

Each of the courses has its own challenges and you can often hear the trees creaking as it's so quiet up there! One of the courses has lots of zip lines from platform to platform which gives you a bit of light relief from the upper and lower body strength needed for the other parts. The most challenging part for me was the Tarzan swing; as much as you know you're attached at all times, it goes against all human nature to just step off something so high but I was incredibly proud when I'd done it! 

By the end we were both shattered and exhilarated in equal measure and I certainly ached the next day because I'd used muscles I've not used for many years! Here's me looking very proud of myself at the end -


If you're looking for something to do at the weekend or in the summer holidays, I would definitely recommend Go Ape Temple Newsam - what's even better is that there's currently a discount code you can use to get 20% off your booking by using the promotional code ADVANCED when you book online.

Let me know if you decide to Go Ape!


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