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  • with this still in place Day 1 September 1 st 2007 We started our trip by putting in at the back of the Kenmore Hotel the top of the River Tay Unfortunately for us there had been very little rain over the previous few weeks and the river level was extremely low It was so low that in a couple of places we just picked up the hydros and walked through the 2 inches of water Also with the river level being so low this meant that the river was running very slow When the river runs slow we have to work hard just to keep going So from day 1 we knew it was going to be tough To add to this within 3 hours of starting I managed to hit a rock which forced my hydro into my chest hitting my folded safety knife and cracking a rib Ouch That was extremely painful By lunchtime the pain seemed to be getting worse and my swimming ability had been majorly reduced At lunch Rhona gave me some painkillers and we prepared for the next section of the river John was coming to guide us through this section the Boneyard to Grandtully as this was our first batch of big rapids John would paddle at the front with me trying to watch his line and follow him Rhona would then be behind me watching both John and I and hopefully avoiding any stoppers rocks etc This section was awesome Bouncing around crashing through waves going down drops and generally doing very little kicking This is what the sport is all about And for most of this section the adrenaline and painkillers took over and the pain was significantly reduced After we had come through Grandtully it was back to the 2 of us It was 2pm and we had been on the river since 8 30am and had travelled approximately 16km We still had another 22km to go that day and we were back on the slow stuff The next five and a half hours went very slowly with more shallow sections and obstacles appearing due to the low water level By the time we finished day 1 it was 7 40pm and getting dark We had been on the water for just over 11 hours and were completely knackered That evening we struggled to get some food down our necks and were in bed by 9pm Day 2 started where Day 1 had ended Dunkeld Today we had 27km to do with the first 20km moving very slowly but the last 7km being a mixture of small bumps whirlpools and huge waves We entered at Dunkeld at 8 30am and met up with John at Kinclaven Bridge at around 2pm John was going to take us down the last 7km and hopefully guide us through the most dangerous parts of our trip The first 2 or 3km had a few relatively small rapids but then we arrived at Campsie

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Hydrospeeding_the_Tay/xsid/60 (2016-02-10)
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  • climbing kit which comprised of crampons helmet and harness After putting these on we slowly tottered into the ice climbing chamber I say tottered as the crampons made me feel like I was wearing a pair of women s high heels This is how they felt when you walked in them so I am told Jamie opened the big freezer door to the ice room and we entered In front of us were several walls of thick freezing ice All 500 tonnes of it and not a smooth bit to be found Jamie explained that the reason for the different textures and angles was to represent what you would find if doing outdoor ice climbing Jack Frost doesn t go around smoothing everything off out there Our instruction started with learning how to kick our crampons into the wall in front of us and then standing up on them This sounds very straight forward but I had great difficulty in trusting my weight to a couple of 2 inch metal spikes sticking into a wall of ice Rhona was much quicker than me with this part Within a couple of goes she was doing it Deano trying to chill photo courtesy of Jamie Ice Factor Soon we were traversing our way along the wall from left to right Although we were only a few inches above the ground and harnessed up to a line that Jamie was controlling I still felt pretty uneasy Once Jamie was happy with this we were given the mighty ice axes Great now I could do some real manly stuff But Jamie said no The idea with the ice axes as with ice climbing overall is not to be heavy handed but to be almost balletic The harder you kicked or threw the axes the more chance of breaking the ice away and you falling It was all about technique The idea was not just to swing the axe at the wall as if hammering a nail in but to reach up and over so that the axe tip came down into the wall A lot easier said than done Rhona onwards and upwards photo courtesy of Jamie Ice Factor After a few minutes of practising this Jamie told me to start climbing upwards using the ice axe and crampon technique he had taught me As I started making my way up the wall he watched an advised me on my technique or maybe that should be lack of technique I was listening to what he said and taking it all in but he was getting harder to hear I hadn t realised how quick I was going up and before I knew it I had reached the top of this wall This was the smaller wall around 30ft tall but it felt great to get to the top Once Jamie lowered me back down it was Rhona s turn It didn t take her long to get to grips with the axes and she

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Indoor_Ice_Climbing/xsid/87 (2016-02-10)
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  • through to the classroom He made a quick introduction and then put an instructional video on for us all to watch Rhona did her best to explain what was being shown A lot of the instructions given during your flight will be done via hand signals as the noise from the giant hairdryer below you would make it almost impossible to hear what anyone said This was slightly worrying as I obviously would not be able to see any hand signals What I did pick up was that we would all be getting two 1 minute flights Once the briefing was over Luca took me to one side and explained how he would do the signals He firstly got me to lie face down on a skydiving simulator trolley He placed my head hands and legs in the correct position He then told me that instead of hand signals he would communicate with me by holding my left hand If he was to hold and release my hand in a pulsing motion this would mean for me to bend my knees and bring my legs up to a 90 degree angle If he was to hold my hand in a continuous motion then I should straighten my legs Pulse to bend hold to straighten All very straight forward After the briefing we were given all in one jumpsuits helmets goggles and ear plugs We were then taken through to the seated area of the chamber There were 6 of us in total and I was to be number 5 and Rho number 6 Rhona indoor skydiving â Photo courtesy of Airkix Manchester To enter the windy chamber we were told to lean forward into Luca s arms and he would steer us into the centre of the chamber whilst the wind from below kept us in the air The first 4 seemed to go really well Then it was my turn Luca guided me to the entrance then touched my back to signal for me to lean forward As I did this my feet rose behind me and I was now hovering above the ground I was at about the height of Luca s chest and he was now able to steer me into the centre of the chamber The noise was deafening and the goggles took away what little sight I had left It was all down to touch now I assumed the position with my elbows bent and my hands in front of my face They would work like bumpers if I was to go towards anything I was a little bit off balance but not too bad However when Luca grabbed my hand and pulsed it I couldn t remember what I was supposed to do A combination of the loud noise adrenaline and possibly age turned my brain to mush Pulse Now was that straighten or bend my legs What are my legs doing now They re kind of bent So should I straighten them more

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Indoor_Skydiving/xsid/76 (2016-02-10)
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  • 2015 SUP Loch Tay SOLO SUP Scilly to Sennen SUP UK s Highest SUP Club SUP Blog Swimming Corryvreckan Gulf Swimming English Channel Swimming Forth River 2014 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2013 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2014 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2015 Swimming Location X 2011 Swimming Location X aka Loch Etchachan 2012 Swimming Monster Swim 2013 Tank Driving Thundercat Powerboat Trekking Nepal 2010 Wakeboarding Water Skiing White Water Rafting Nepal White Water Sledging Windsurfing Wing Walking Zip Slide Zorb It s A Knockout Torquay Devon England For those of you over the age of 25 It s A Knockout means something But for those of you who are a bit younger It s A Knockout means running around and over inflatable obstacles whilst getting very wet Our team in 2000 Our team in 2000 It s A Knockout is organised by the RNIB in Torquay Devon It is a sponsored event raising funds for the local centre Manor House Manor House offers retraining for blind and partially sighted adults This training can be in subjects as diverse as leather crafting to computer skills The training is of a very high quality I can speak from experience as I took part in training with them at the end of 1999 Anthony s Angels 2002 Anthony s Angels 2002 The events can best be described as bouncy wet and wild Over the years the events have included carrying large inflatable sausages through foam filled tunnels carrying pieces of a rubber pyramid over a slippery slope and firing water filled sponges over a castle wall with a D I Y catapult And of course Its A Knockout would not be Its A Knockout without dressing up as a frog and doing an assault course Deano s Devils 2002 Deano s Devils 2002 I have entered

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Its_A_Knockout!/xsid/29 (2016-02-10)
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  • Tay SOLO SUP Scilly to Sennen SUP UK s Highest SUP Club SUP Blog Swimming Corryvreckan Gulf Swimming English Channel Swimming Forth River 2014 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2013 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2014 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2015 Swimming Location X 2011 Swimming Location X aka Loch Etchachan 2012 Swimming Monster Swim 2013 Tank Driving Thundercat Powerboat Trekking Nepal 2010 Wakeboarding Water Skiing White Water Rafting Nepal White Water Sledging Windsurfing Wing Walking Zip Slide Zorb Jet Boat Sydney Australia In July of 2001 Rhona and I spent 26 hours in Sydney on a stopover between Thailand and the Mecca of extreme sports New Zealand After checking out the Opera House and the Bridge we decided it was time for a bit of excitement Whilst walking around the harbour we came across Oz Jet Boating They offered boat trips around the harbour as did lots of other people The difference with these guys was that your boat was a high speed jet boat Rhona had seen them going around the harbour and had tried to explain to me what it looked like She did a really good job but now it was time to try it for ourselves Once they had gathered enough of us to fill the jet boat we were all issued with waterproof ankle length ponchos It was already raining a little bit in Sydney well it was their winter but we were obviously going to get a lot wetter We started off by heading out of the harbour past the Opera House at a very comfortable speed Once far enough away from the other boats they opened up the throttle Now we discovered why they call these things Jet Boats Spray was kicked up behind us and anything within 5 metres from our tail was going to get

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Jet_Boat/xsid/30 (2016-02-10)
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  • out for the day Oh well it was Saturday and Chelsea were probably playing The following day we were off down river in a solid wooden canoe There was just the 3 of us Rhona Papoocha our guide and me For the next 6 or 7 hours we paddled pushed and pulled the canoe to our first camp The river was full of fallen trees that lay across the river Some of these could either be paddled around over or under However some of them had been left in really awkward places How inconsiderate J For these we had to get out of the boat and pull it over through As the boat was made of solid wood and it contained our packs tents food etc this was not an easy job Never mind the temperature being in the mid 80s and humidity around 70 We also had to make sure that we didn t fall into the water as it was full of piranhas This was not a problem as they only went for you if you had a cut How likely was this considering we were pulling an old wooden canoe through sharp branches and thick undergrowth Fortunately Papoocha knew his stuff and at one point he headed off into the jungle with his machete A few minutes later he came back with some large pieces of bark He then soaked these in the river and hey presto we now had some Slippy When placed over the fallen trees in our way the canoe could then slide over with a lot less effort Good man Papoocha Later that day we tried to take a shortcut through some overhanging bushes This is where the red Fire ants lived Tiny red ants with a massive bite Rhona and I found this out the hard way It felt like someone had put a lit match under our skin The area around the bite 6 7cm swelled up and remained this way for the next few hours We also had a brightly coloured snake swim out to see us Papoocha quickly flicked it away with his paddle This turned out to be a very dangerous snake If it bit us we were dead Oh well it beats a night in Lago Agrio That evening we set up camp by the side of the river The camp was made up of 2 tents and a large tarpaulin which covered both tents Our evening meal was tuna rice and fresh vegetables washed down with a really nice fruit flavoured hot drink After our meal we sat in our canoe and washed the dishes in the river As we dipped the dishes in the river we could see the piranhas coming up to get any scraps At one point there were around 10 15 piranhas swimming around us Unfortunately the heat of the jungle was too much for me I had been told of this before we left for the jungle but foolishly I thought

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Jungle_Trekking_Ecuador/xsid/31 (2016-02-10)
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  • Race Oban 2013 Sea Kayak Race Oban 2012 Sea Kayaking 1 Sea Kayaking 2 Skatewing Skimboarding Skydiving tandem Snorkeling Western Australia Snowboarding Speed Riding tandem Sphere ing Stunt Plane 2002 Stunt Plane 2011 SUP Caledonian Canal aka Great Glen SUP Kerrera SUP Loch Awe 2015 SUP Loch Tay SOLO SUP Scilly to Sennen SUP UK s Highest SUP Club SUP Blog Swimming Corryvreckan Gulf Swimming English Channel Swimming Forth River 2014 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2013 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2014 Swimming Lamlash Splash 2015 Swimming Location X 2011 Swimming Location X aka Loch Etchachan 2012 Swimming Monster Swim 2013 Tank Driving Thundercat Powerboat Trekking Nepal 2010 Wakeboarding Water Skiing White Water Rafting Nepal White Water Sledging Windsurfing Wing Walking Zip Slide Zorb Kayak Slide Waimarino Adventure Park New Zealand Deano going forward We popped into the Waimarino Adventure Park to see what they had to offer I had heard that they had all manner of activities available From climbing walls to kayaks On arrival we met the owner s son Blair who was full of enthusiasm and we immediately felt that we had come to our sort of place We hired a couple of kayaks and were driven to the put in point about 11km up river After a leisurely paddle back Blair invited us to have a go on the kayak slide Rhona going forward This is possibly the only purpose built kayak slide in the world It is around 75 metres long and is mostly meant to be used as a normal water slide i e for people to sit on a mat and slide down But the last 20 metres or so is designed to take a kayak At the end of your shortt ride you shoot out into the river from a height of about 2 metres

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Kayak_Slide/xsid/32 (2016-02-10)
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  • and I m based in Perthshire Central Scotland around an 8 hour drive away we couldn t just pop down for a day trip So diaries were checked and plans were made The result was that we would meet up on Sunday the 28th of April 2013 whilst on a short trip south of the border I had never been in a microlight before but had seen them on the TV They looked a little like something from a James Bond film with hang glider wings above an open cockpit and a propeller at the front I hoped that when we did our flight the weather would be kind as I was going to be fully exposed to the elements A few years earlier I had had a go at hang gliding The weather had been nice but when we got airborne I was freezing The microlight was likely to be travelling at a greater speed up to 100 knots and possibly at a higher altitude Thus it was likely to be much colder So I was fully prepared with a bag full of winter clothing However when I met up with Paddy still wearing my shorts he told me that I wouldn t need to change He even told me that if I got cold he could put the heating on Heating in an open cockpit Was I missing something When Paddy introduced me to the microlight we would be flying in I was very pleasantly surprised Welcome to the modern face of microlighting The microlight we would be flying in was called a C42 but to me it looked like a mini plane The cockpit was fully enclosed and it had 2 seats side by side Paddy showed me around the aircraft explaining what everything was and how it all worked This took 20 minutes or so and shortly after I found myself strapped into my seat whilst Paddy went through his pre flight checks After these were completed we drove along to the runway Paddy had his pre take off chat with the air control chap and we were given clearance to take off A minute or so later we were motoring along the runway and then we were airborne We started off by climbing to around 2 000 feet At this point Paddy then told me that he wanted to climb a further 500 feet and to do this he was going to switch the engines off Yes switch the engines off Paddy had positioned us in a thermal and by flying in small circles within this thermal sure enough when he switched off the engine we continued to climb Awesome We were still going up but using absolutely no fuel For a tight Scotsman like myself anything for free is a bonus Over the next 15 minutes Paddy had control of the microlight but I was encouraged to put my hands loosely on the controls so I could feel how much or how little they

    Original URL path: http://www.extremedreams.co.uk/index.php/Extremedreams/Microlight_Flight/xsid/93 (2016-02-10)
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