We all know Queenstown is famous for adrenaline and adventure. But what is the ultimate activity to do around here that gets your heart racing?
Well, we think we’ve found the answer...
Just a 10 minute drive from Queenstown, we arrive at The Canyon Swing, a 200m swing off a vertical cliff. It’s stunning - a sheer valley with a racing river and towering mountains - but standing on the 109m jump platform, I’m not looking up for once. I’m looking down. A long way down.
Our jump masters for the day all seem to be stand-up comedians. Brad in particular is eager to make you laugh and scream simultaneously (arguably the perfect man), whose professionalism puts you at ease instantly.
With a whole book of different ways to jump, including the imaginatively-named ‘Elvis Cutaway’, ‘Indian Rope Trick’ and ‘Gimp Boy Goes to Hollywood’ (upside down), I ask Brad to choose for me.
He grins, and yells to the other jump masters; “PIN DROP!!!”
There’s a few whoops, a cheer, and a solemn ‘good luck’, as Brad harnesses me up for the Pin Drop, whatever that is.
“Now, stand here. Right here. Up to the edge. Put your hands behind your back, and whatever you do, don’t grab hold of anything. Got it?”
I stand less than an inch from the edge of vertical cliff face drop. It’s dizzying, crazy, unthinkable to even imagine throwing myself off this tiny platform.
“Are you ready? Do you need a countdown?” They ask. Something inside me rears its proud head - do I need a countdown? Hell no! I’m going to do this.
The freefall alone is mind-blowing. You fall for 60 metres. That’s 60 metres of feeling weightless, of rushing gravity, of mind-blowing speeds and a ground racing up to meet you. That’s 60 metres of screaming and laughing until you're hoarse and tears stream down your cheeks. After that, it’s a gentle ride over the Shotover River, a pleasant dangling in one of Queenstown’s most beautiful canyons.
When I’m finally winched up, the boys give me high fives. “We didn’t think you’d actually jump by yourself!” They cry, laughing. Watching the play back video, it’s even more satisfying seeing their shocked faces. Canyon Swing has done it, they’re officially my favourite adrenaline-racing thing to do in Queenstown. Now who’s for another go?