Monthly Archives: July 2016

Our Challenge to You: Take the First Step

Take the First Step with Go Ape

How many times have you promised yourself ‘this is going to be MY summer of fun!’? Or ‘this year I’m going on an adventure‘…and how many times have you not fulfilled your promise?

Sometimes, even with the best of intentions, we all sell ourselves a little short when it comes to getting outdoors and spending time with family and friends. All too often we’re left waiting for the ‘perfect’ weather, or not sure we can push ourselves outside of our comfort zone.

Log Crossing at Go Ape

Whatever your excuse has been, we want to encourage you to leave it in the past, move forward and embrace 2016 as the year you live life adventurously. And we’ll let you in on a little secret – the perfect time is now.

It’s been a rather turbulent year for Britain, dare we say things have got a serious of late and in the spirit of keeping life balanced it’s time to go have some fun. A lot of fun!

Which is where our challenge comes in: Take the First Step.

Tree Top Adventure at Go Ape

It’s how the journey begins after all, and where adventures are brought to life. Don’t worry, you’re not on your own, we want to help you get out there and swap ‘I can’t’ for ‘I can’.

#TakeTheFirstStep and watch our latest video.

An adventure for two please

Take the First Step at Go Ape

In our opinion, shared adventures are the best adventures! That’s why all of our forest activities are suitable for any size group, whether you fancy tackling tree-top obstacles with your tribe in tow, or rolling through the forest en masse aboard our all-terrain Segways.

Our adventures are particularly perfect for pairs, whether you’re other half is actually your other half, or perhaps one of your parents, mates, or kids. In fact, if you’re looking for an adventure for two and are swinging by the capital anytime soon, you’ve got to check out our twin Tree Top Adventure course nestled amidst the woodland in Trent Park!

Aside from Go Ape, here are some other adventurous activities-for-two that you and your partner can get involved in:

Zorbing

Why walk down a hill when you can roll down it in a giant, inflatable ball!? Choose to be strapped in face-to-face (harness zorbing), or enter the ball with 40 or so litres of water and slip ‘n’ slide your way down (much more fun, in our opinion). Prepare for zorbing to turn your world upside down ñ literally!

Biking

Now, there’s definitely a knack to tandem biking, but it’s mega fun once you’ve mastered it! The first thing you’ll need to agree on is who’s at the front (captain) and who’s at the rear (stoker). And if you bagsied the back, you must resist all temptation to sneakily ease off the pedals! Stick to quiet, flat cycle paths to start, remembering to count down from three before pushing off!

Kayaking

What better way to explore the UK’s glorious coast than via a tandem kayak? Depending on where you visit, you could discover everything from hidden coves to giant caves and deserted beaches as you paddle around, and you’re bound to spot some sea life, too.

Hovercraft

Turning up the notch a little, how do you fancy becoming hovercraft pilots for the day? Skimming across the water, you can take it in turns to steer this powerful beast, which reaches up to 40mph! Definitely one for the speed freaks!

Bungee jump

If you like living life on the edge and then jumping off it how about signing up to a tandem bungee jump? Prepare for a huge adrenaline rush as you and your partner take the leap of faith while locked in a tight embrace!

Have you embarked on any daring duo adventures other than the ones mentioned above? Let us know what they are, and we might check them out ourselves!

One day maybe I’ll be as fast and thin as the Brownlees

Rich

Rich Cooke, a long standing member of the Go Ape tribe, headed to Snowdonia for the Slateman triathlon.

Hear the story from Rich himself…

On a day that the country appears to have been bathed in sunshine, I was in Snowdonia in the pouring rain for Slateman Full Triathlon.

A civilised start of 10.10am meant a good night’s sleep and breakfast before strolling from accommodation to the start. 

After sorting all my gear and having a brief chat to a club mate I donned my wetsuit just as it started raining. I like everybody else and all the kit got soaking wet and therefore cold. I was now regretting the late start time but it did mean I could see my mate come out of the swim, I shouted encouragement but he was too cold to hear!

Rich1Anyway, the lake was calm and 12.5 degrees so as I entered slowly to get used to it I slipped and was fully submersed, not to be recommended as I also bashed my ankle and back in the process, this would take its toll later in the race…

1000m later I was warmish and it had stopped raining so on to the bike which I enjoyed despite the wet roads and a couple of wheel suckers. I’m glad I stopped briefly to put a jacket on before the descent – and a further downpour! This went well and a good time from 55km around Snowdonia, including an ascent of the LLanberis pass.

Finally on to the run!

Well mostly a walk for me as my back was now hurting, but actually I couldn’t have run up the slate mines in LLanberis anyway. I ran when I could and walked when I couldn’t and finally shuffled over the finish line in around 4h. The Slate mines are very impressive up close and the view from the top was worth he effort – I could recommend this route as a nice walk for most people.

After eating and changing into dry clothes, a long drive home was all that was left of the day. This Slate man Triathlon was the first of a Welsh series, at the end of July I will undertake the Snowman, and in September the Sandman, all three events are Olympic distance triathlons.

One day maybe I’ll be as fast and thin as the Brownlee brothers!

Adventurous fundraising activities for 2016

Go Ape Three Peaks Yacht Race

It’s been just over 2 weeks since our bold and brave Go Ape team conquered the gruelling Three Peaks Yacht Race (3PYR). They endured a whopping 389 miles of sailing, 72 miles of running and 18 miles of cycling, which they completed in four days and 16 hours. Bravo!

Through the trials and tribulations (particularly the extreme weather conditions and boat engine trouble), the team still managed to bag a top ten spot. And when we asked Jerome if he’d do it again, he replied without hesitation, “Without a shadow of a doubt.

Go Ape Three Peaks Yacht Race Team

All members signed-up for the race because they wanted to challenge themselves and test their true potential, and it required months of preparation and dedication. But there was also another reason why they were embarking on this monumental adventure: to raise money for a great cause.

So far, over £6,000 has been raised for the Outward Bound Trust; a charity that helps young people from all walks of life by running adventurous and challenging outdoor learning programmes that equip them with valuable skills for education, work and life. Our target is £10,000 – and you can help us to reach it by donating via our Virgin Money Giving page!

Anyway, enough about us. How about you? Have you always fancied taking part in an adventurous sporting challenge, but never taken the next step? Well, let us help! There are tonnes of events across the UK that you can get involved in and raise some money for your charity of choice. Here are just some of them:

The 12 Labours of Hercules: 16th-17th July

Hercules was a mythical Greek Hero; and you can expect to feel pretty heroic after completing this mammoth challenge. The event takes place in the mystical surroundings of the Long Mynd, a heath and moorland plateau which forms part of the Shropshire Hills. Entrants have to complete as many of the 12 Labours as possible – but whereas Hercules had 12 years in which to do so, you’ve got just 24 hours. This wins our vote for the most imaginative event!

The South Coast Challenge: 27th-28th August

Walk, jog, run – it’s your choice. The South Coast Challenge route encompasses some truly stunning scenery, from the chalk headlands of Beachy Head in East Sussex, to the Seven Sister Country Park river valley and legendary Devils Dyke. You can opt to go the whole hog and cover 100km, but there are also half and ¼ options available.

Eton Swim: 3rd September

You’ll need to ditch the Speedos in favour of a full-bodied wetsuit for this one – an open water swim in Berkshire’s Dorney Lake, which was used for the 2012 Olympics. This one’s suitable for all ages and abilities, with distances ranging from 740km to 10km. Don’t worry about bringing your own swim cap along, as all participants are given one before they dive in!

Coast to Coast Cycle Challenge: 16th-18th September

Keen cyclist? Then check out this challenge: an epic 140 mile ride starting from the Cumbrian cost and cruising all the way to the North Sea. Of course, when we say ‘cruising,’ we mean pedalling frantically to try and bag a top spot. The route crosses the northern edge Lake District, climbs the northern Pennines and follows the fringes of Hadrian’s Wall. Prepare for serious calf ache as you climb the hills in the Eden Valley – and enjoy the descents!

Tough Mudder: Multiple dates

We like the ethos behind this one – ‘It’s not about how fast you can cross the finish line. Rather, it’s a challenge that emphasises teamwork, camaraderie, and accomplishing something almost as tough as you are.’

Tough Mudder is a 10-12 mile obstacle course designed to test your physical and mental strength. It’s like an extreme version of a Tree Top Adventure, with a good dollop of the brown stuff (mud, that is…).

Have you already signed-up for an event this year? If so, which one?

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