I Got Pushed off a Mountain in Slovenia: Ziplining with Aktivni Planet

on October 12, 2017

I’m sitting in the backseat of a dirt-covered truck, pressed between my 6 foot tall boyfriend and a very large Slovenian man. In the front seat, our driver (another large Slovenian man) and the passenger (yet another large Slovenian man) indistinguishably yell to each other over the loud crunch of rocks beneath tires. I stare straight ahead. To my right, the cliff edge and a sheer fall down the mountains. To my left, sharp bend after sharp bend of mountain road, the not-knowing of whether another car will be hurtling toward us at each corner. Our driver bangs the dashboard of the dusty truck with his fist, and my attention is drawn through the window. Briefly, I see a small figure whip by, at least a hundred meters above us, on a thin wire. “That’ll be you” our driver yells, this time in English. I can feel my stomach clench. It’s early morning, and we are driving up a mountain in order to throw ourselves off it. We are heading to the largest zipline park in Europe to go ziplining with Aktivni Planet, and I’m questioning my sanity.

The beautiful mountain view that we ziplined across, through, and over! You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

Maybe you think I’m exaggerating, or maybe you think I’m just afraid of heights, but neither are true. When I stared out at that expanse of blue mountains from the start of the zipline course, I questioned why in the hell I had ever wanted to do this. My days of ziplining in England’s Go Ape were child’s play compared to the vast mountain pass before me. I was scared driving up the mountain, much less flying across it all on my own, attached only to a wire.

However, I also think the adrenaline and the lead up to experiences like this are what make them so much better. Sure,  I was terrified. But… isn’t that kind of the point?

Me getting harnessed in by our guide for my first zipline. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

cool as a cucumber

 

A terrified selfie waiting in line for the first zip wire. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

NOT.

Well, when we reached the start of the zipline course, there were about 25 of us who would be doing it all together. And it very quickly became clear that, apart from Dan and I, every last one of them was Slovenian.

{Before I continue, let me tell you about Slovenians. Slovenians are wilderness gods and goddesses, lovers of the outdoors and the outdoors love them back… they are kind, polite, humble and fearless. I asked our guide if she had done the zipline so many times that she didn’t even get any adrenaline any more. She looked at me quizzically, and said “Adrenaline? This? No, I never had adrenaline from a zipline!” I laughed with her, meanwhile staring down the abyss to the forest floor, dying a little inside. The same could be true of most of the other Slovenians in our group – none of them seemed scared, instead they fit into their harnesses like we Americans wear our sweatpants and baseball hats. So maybe my “isn’t making yourself do something you’re scared of half the fun of it” shpeel isn’t universal. Go figure.}

Our guide preparing me for the first zip wire across the alps. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

Well, after a few test runs on a model zipline just a few feet above the ground (on which I failed, and had to redo, giving me great confidence for my upcoming mountain zipline performance), we got ready for our first of five ziplines. I stood in line, waiting my turn. And then, sooner than I’d hoped for, it was my turn. My turn to be pushed off a mountain in Slovenia.

Me right after being pushed off a mountain in Slovenia! You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

Me beginning the zipline course into the trees. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

Me zooming off on the zipline into the trees. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

30 seconds can seem like a long time when you are alone, attached to a wire 200 meters above the earth. It can also feel like no time at all. The wind blew against my face as I clenched the pulley system in my gloved hands, my only connection to life. Suddenly remembering the guides’ instruction not to hold your body weight, I released my arm muscles and felt my body relax into the harness. Below me, pines and beeches stood small. I dared a glance across my left shoulder, over the mountain pass. The sun was burning through the morning mist, the distant alps still shrouded in a blue haze, and the closer ones dark green and huge. For a glancing second, I thought: I need to hold onto this moment.

But then the wind caught me – it was pushing my body further and further left, my knees suddenly pointing toward the  mountains instead of the guide waiting for me on the other end of the zipline. I couldn’t control my body! Flashing through my mind were the guides’ warnings: use your core to keep your body straight, don’t give into the wind, if you lose momentum you could end up sliding all the way back to the dip in the center of the zipline, 200 meters above the ground, and have only your own arms to pull yourself centimeter by centimeter up the zipline toward the landing platform.

But the panic was momentary. I tensed my right arm and my knees realigned, I was still speeding toward the landing platform, the guide giving me the “brake” sign, and then a thumbs up as I slowed to a halt, my feet on the ground once again.

Me returning to land after ziplining, getting the thumbs up from our guide. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

The zipline course has five wires, each lasting around 30 seconds and bringing you to speeds up to 60kmph.  Being definitely not Slovenian, I had a fair amount of nerves and adrenaline with each zipline. But there is something so amazing about doing things you are scared of, and that rush of confidence you get afterwards when you find you are capable of something new! All of the ziplines are solo, except for one in which you are attached to a partner (to help the smaller people get the momentum to go really fast all the way across!)

A tandem ziplining with Aktivni Planet over the alps. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

We loved every single one of them, and what made the experience even better was doing it alongside so many Slovenians. Apparently this is not usually the case, and everyone was laughing that of everyone on the zipline adventure, we were the only non-Slovenians.

Dan and I waiting our turn to zipline. You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

I definitely recommend going with Aktivni Planet – although our experience was sponsored, we loved them so much that we paid to go white water rafting on the Soca River with them the next day. They are also a really convenient company to go with if you are staying in Bovec’s best and only hostel, Hostel Soca Rocks, because they are run by the same people. You also get a 10% discount if you are staying at Hostel Soca Rocks. We felt safe the whole time, were laughing all the way through, and now I think I have a bit of a zipline obsession!

The Details

What: ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Slovenia. 5 ziplines, each lasting 30 seconds and reaching up to 60kmph, around 200 meters above the ground.

Where: Bovec, Slovenia

Price: €55, to book click here.

Stay: Hostel Soca Rocks

Have you ever been ziplining? Would you dare to go?

Sarah xx

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You can't go to Slovenia without ziplining with Aktivni Planet in Europe's biggest zipline park. Ziplining in Slovenia is unlike anything else.

**Our ziplining experience was courtesy of Aktivni Planet, but all opinions are my own.



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  • this sounds terrifying but also awesome. I can’t even imagine how amazing the views must have been from the lines.

    • Yep it was definitely both aha. The views were incredible and unbeatable, I wish I’d had a go pro or something to capture them on film, but maybe they are more special that they are just in my memory 🙂

  • thecurioussparrow

    Great photos! I’ve always wanted to try this 🙂

  • This looks amazing! I love zip lining and that view looks incredible!! Bet you had an amazing experience, beautiful pictures!

    • The view was unbeatable and there’s no other way to get it than flying through the mountain pass 😉

  • Akvile Stan

    It looks class, it sounds very challenging but god.. I could never do it!!! I would be doing my pants and scream for my dear life on it! I’m not scared of heights but that… that’s a very brave thing to do!

  • Opium teahouse

    Loved the way how you described Slovenians. Sometimes its good to be the only non-local in a situation, as you end up doing things you’d not do otherwise. Well done on jumping off that mountain! 🙂
    – Diana

  • Kathi Kamleitner

    Looks amazing! I recently went zip lining in Scotland on two of the UK’s longest and largest ziplines. They cross a forest valley and you can see a huge waterfall beneath you – it’s incredible! Sounds like such a great experience to have in Slovenia – would love to go!

  • These pictures are amazing! Looks like y’all had a blast. I’ve been zip lining before and have been searching for my next zip lining adventure 😉

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