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November 2009 Travel Zambia 19 Livingstone " This makes it incredibly safe to raft and river board, provided you use the appropriate equipment and heed the advice of your experienced river guides." As my board slid down the glassy face of the aptly named ' Muncher' towards a tsunami of white water, I had a split second to refl ect that this seemed slightly suicidal. The next few seconds seemed like minutes as the rapid tossed me under one wave and over the next before, eventually, spitting me out the back. Spluttering for breath, and silently thanking my ' overworked and underpaid' guardian angels for getting me through, I swam over to a beaming Choongo for some wild high fi ves. I was pumped and I wanted more. Cliff- hanger ( abseiling and rap jumping) Abseiling might not sound like the most terrifying activity available, but it did mark the start of a very tough Wednesday that saw me throwing myself off a ridiculously large number of cliffs and bridges. Abseiling instructor Dominique Namubwalu suggested I try rap jumping to liven things up. " You clip onto the rope, face forwards and sprint down the cliff," he clarifi ed, in response to the puzzled look on my face. " Just like Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible." Oh well, I think. Easy then. Down to the wire ( high wire/ fl ying fox/ zip line) " Dive off the cliff with your arms out and soar like an eagle across the gorge," commanded my instructor, Fred Kawana. The so- called ' fl ying fox' requires you to attach your waist harness to a cable that is suspended above a gorge. You then sprint for ten metres before launching yourself over the edge, thus creating the momentum that propels you across the abyss. I couldn't help but notice, as I sprinted towards the edge, that I looked nothing like an eagle. And diving off the precipice, my harness straining alarmingly against my weight, I didn't feel like one either. But I relaxed once I realised my harness would hold me up, and fear turned to exhilaration as I zipped across the canyon. Swing low ( gorge swinging) " You will experience a 53- metre freefall lasting three seconds, before the rope arrests your fall and swings you like a pendulum backwards and forwards across the gorge," explained my instructor, Peter Simasiku. " Feel free to scream," he added - with just a hint of relish - as I prepared to take a giant stride off the cliff. " It comes with the package!" It was a simultaneously exhilarating and terrifying experience. Abseil Zambia's general manager, Kulu, convinced me to go again, but this time backwards " to experience the difference". By the end of the morning I was completely drained and my nerves shattered. Not even the impeccable safety record of no accidents in over 100,000 jumps could entice me to a third swing. BUNDU ADVENTURES STEPHEN CUNLIFFE STEPHEN CUNLIFFE BUNDU ADVENTURES

20 Travel Zambia November 2009 www. siankaba. net siankaba@ zamnet. zm tel: + 260 211 260279 / 3 327490 Seven river- facing secluded chalets, situated on two private islands in the Zambezi River, between the Victoria Falls and Chobe National Park. Unique. Extraordinary. On the banks of the Zambezi, in the heart of the wild, within easy reach of Victoria Falls... an informal, family- friendly lodge where you can enjoy river sports, visit the Falls, tour the famous game parks of neighbouring Botswana and Zimbabwe or just relax and enjoy the view. www. waterberrylodge. com reservations@ waterberrylodge. com LIVINGSTONE . ZAMBIA Ana Tree Life ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? Ana Tree Lodge Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia Tel: + 260 211 250730 anatreelodge@ zamnet. zm www. anatreelodge. com ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? LUXURY, NATURALLY Livingstone, South Luangwa National Park, Lower Zambezi National Park sanctuaryretreats. com