“Mountain Dew cannot help me overcome my fear ”! I thought, standing atop twenty feet cliff above water. According to the sources, the river bed was eighty feet deep. Rahul, my team mate, who had jumped in before me, screamed from the river asking me to dive in. The thought of scaling hundred feet, scared me to hell and I stood unmoved staring at others who took less than five seconds to jump into the shimmering green water of the river. I wasn’t there to promote Mountain Dew or any adventure movie. I was there on an adventure trip to Rishikesh with a group of twenty. While river rafting was so much fun and thrilling, cliff jumping was equally scary.
Ready for the punge
On the white sand
I had visited Rishikesh many times with my family since childhood.(The perks of birth place Uttarakhand) However, this was the first adventure trip I had dared for. At last, my dream of white water rafting materialized. I have never been scared of water despite not knowing swimming. But trust me, when I boarded the raft wearing a helmet and safety jacket, I started feeling butterflies in my stomach. Our 20-something instructor, Rana, made us learn the commands to follow while rafting. Coordination is the most important thing while rowing and one should not panic even if he falls off the raft or gets caught in a rapid (That’s what the river currents are called). Wall, double trouble, center danger, roller coaster, golf course – These are the names of the rapids which we went through, in the 21 km stretch, with roller coaster& golf course being the riskiest and highest rapids.
Rana asked us to jump and I took less than a second to jump into ice cold water. Swimming with the current along the raft, is an out of the world experience. I was more than happy to enjoy the adventure.
Thankfully, our raft didn’t flip over, unlike our neighbor raft, which threw people in a rapid after losing control & coordination. No casualties reported of course (No body drowns because of the safety jackets you are made to wear). When a rapid hits the raft and inclines it at 45 degree, you either feel scared or excited. I felt something else. The roaring high waves lashing against our raft, reminded me of Samudra Manthan and I felt like a descendant of Bear Grylls. (Though I know I don’t even match to one-tenth of his skills, but imagination has no bounds you see! Hehe!) The excitement and the thrill concentrated in my stomach somewhere and “Aawesomee!!”, I screamed my lungs out. The view was breathtaking with the waves trying to engulf us. We braved all the rapids and carried home a lifetime memorable experience.
My left thumb and shoulder are now in pain due to aggressive continuous rowing. I looked at my body bruises later at night during bonfire.
Skillful rafting however didn’t give me the courage for cliff jumping. I regret not overcoming that fear though being the only girl to volunteer at the 20 feet cliff. Darr k aagey jeet hai? Well I guess yes.