Life would be dull if we always stayed within our comfort zones. So when I heard that VICTA were organising a trip to Wales involving a visit to Zip World and mastering Mount Snowdon, I was quick to sign up.
Luckily for me I was able to get a place on the trip, which took place between 7-9 July. After meeting at Bangor train station, we went straight to Zip World to fly at around 100mph over a quarry and lake. I’ve experienced zip wires in the past, but none as long or as fast as the ones at Zip World. Usually, I’m used to sitting upright on a zip wire, yet at Zip World you lie on your front and just dangle in the air. The thought of this was very disconcerting, so I was surprised to feel secure and safe in the position. I’m sure it helped not being able to see the earth way beneath me. We first tried the little zipper to get a feel of everything and then it was time for the main event. The sensation of soaring through the air is unbelievable. The wind whooshed against you at such force it temporarily deafens you and it’s impossible to open your mouth to scream. Rain drops pelted against my skin, which wasn’t pleasant, but added to the sensory experience.
The following day, it was time to conquer Mount Snowdon. At first I was a little disgruntled to hear that we would only be climbing down the mountain, as who aspires to descend a mountain?! However, I underestimated the challenge. We got the train up to the top and then climbed to the summit. I thought the wind at Zip World was powerful, little did I realise the winds at the peak of Mount Snowdon were on another level. The cold was biting, my face ached and it was a fight to stay upright. My six layers just didn’t feel adequate. The entire trek was testing, but until the wind settled down, as we got lower, it felt near impossible and generally difficult to enjoy. I expected it to be tricky underfoot, but again I failed to anticipate how awkward it would be at times. Being blind definitely made the walk a million times harder, the amount of occasions I misfooted and twisted my ankles was unreal. Nevertheless, my guide was amazing.
I think it took us around three and a half hours to get to the bottom and the sense of achievement was immense. Two days, two challenges, two unbelievable feats. A big thank you to VICTA and their volunteers for enabling blind and partially sighted young people to push themselves beyond their limits.