Your feet are tied. You’re standing 83 meters above sea level, ready to witness the magic of gravity, glide free as you scream ‘bungee!!!’.
No, this is not some magic soft drink ad. It’s Asia’s longest one-km long flying fox at Rishikesh, Dehradun.
When you’re gliding at the speed of 150-km per hour, the river, trees, birds and all things green and brown pass by from under you in swift flashes. In short, it’s your proud, unforgettable superman experience!
Called Jumpin Heights, they tie you at the wait with a harness and suspend you at 83 meters, in a sitting position, so you swing in a ‘convenient’ pendulum parabola in a 60-meter arc.
And you thought Rishikesh was only about river rafting? Visit Mohanchatti, a village 15-km across Lakshman Jhula, Rishikesh, for Jumpin Heights - India’s first extreme-adventure zone with bungee jumping, giant swing and flying fox — an initiative started by ex-army officers. Colonel Manoj Kumar, executive director, Jumpin Heights, says, “Nasik-based Captain Rahul Nigam conceptualised the idea and I executed it. It took us ages to find the right location though. In May 2010, we opened it for the public. About 10,000 bungee jumps have been made safely so far. Our prime concern, obviously, remains safety.”
Elaborating on their safety measures, he says, “We got our equipment from New Zealand and Australia and we got technically-qualified experts from New Zealand to provide services here. The jump platforms too have been designed by the team from New Zealand. Thanks to regular checks and inspections, we change our equipment keeping in mind its lifespan.”
What’s more, you can watch other people’s jumps on screen as well, while gorging on piping hot coffee. Besides providing you with a breath-taking view, the cafeteria also lets you watch live recordings of the jumps on their screens. “All the jumps are recorded on DVDs, which one can purchase later. A lot of people get motivated solely by watching others’ jumps on the TV! You will be amazed to know that more men than women back out at the last minute! Indian women are apparently more courageous,” adds the colonel.
So, do the men get their money back for acting like children? “No. In fact, the fact that they won’t get their money back plays a major role in people, no matter how scared they are, finally taking the ‘plunge’.”
The best time to visit, informs he, is from October to February. “The weather for such activities is favourable from October to February. People usually visit during summer holidays, between March and June. We are closed from July 1 to September-end. We are also closed every Tuesday.”