January 9, 2012 in Category Australia,Cairns,Scarlett Adventures...

Terror In The Sky

Someone once told me that in just 10 of the massive 900,000 square hectares of Kuranda National Rainforest, you will come across more different species of animals and plant-life than you would if you walked across the whole of North America.*

…Although, I should probably mention that I was actually told this by a very nice man who described himself as one of the “indigenous population” of Kuranda and was, at that time, sitting next to me on the grass, swigging a bottle of Jim Bean wrapped in a plastic bag.

(How I ended up involved in that situation, along with the fucking stupid conversation that followed is a story for another day.)

Whilst that statistic may or may not be true depending on my new friend’s ever-increasing level of inebriation, I can tell you that the Kuranda Rainforest is home to over 3,000 different species of plant, and is possibly one of the most awe-inspiring and beautiful natural phenomena’s I’ve ever seen.

This would be the point where I tell you there is no better way to see it than by soaring over the canopies 545 foot above sea level – which of course there isn’t… that is, of course, unless you find yourself in a cable car with someone who is absolutely fucking terrified of heights… and if that particular cable car just so happens to break down.

My mum is terrified of heights at the best of times, which meant we had to ply her with at least 4 pints just to get her on the various flights to Australia in the first place. So you can imagine what she was like suspended in a plastic pod (with absolutely nothing to hold desperately on to) hundreds of feet above the ground.

As the pod screeched to a sudden stop we all held our breath; the only sound was my mum peeling her shaking, clammy fingers away from her eyes to peek through the gaps…

…and there we swung. For four whole minutes. Five-hundred-and-forty-five-feet above a rocky gorge.

I know what you’re thinking; “…four minutes? Bit of a drama queen aren’t you?”

Well fuck you… count it in Mississippi’s while on the brink of death and then we’ll talk.

For three of those hell-minutes no-one uttered a single word, we just casually contemplated how we could possibly survive if the cable suddenly snapped, to the sound of my mum’s ever-increasing heartbeat and desperate gasping.

Eventually the tension that had been building to a stupid level in our plastic prison got to her, and she shrieked, “what-the-FUCKING-HELL-IS -HAPPENING?”

…To which my Dad did an exaggerated, comedy ‘I’m totally relaxed’ stretch and replied, (and I think this is pretty impressive improvisation during a near death experience), “Nothing, it’s a photo opp, everything’s sound…THIS WAS IN THE LEAFLET”

“This was in the leaflet”??? Of course it wasn’t in the fucking leaflet, I’m pretty sure the surrounding pods weren’t getting much of a ‘photo-opp’ from the various canopies and foliage they were tangled up in, but of course we all nodded reassuringly.

My Dad later described his feelings during the situation as follows; and I quote, “Oh yeah, I proper thought we were going to die, I just didn’t want her to make a hysterical dash to the door to try and get out.”

All that said, the Kuranda Skyrail is probably one of the most amazing and beautiful experiences you can have in Eastern Australia…

…but just say the cable did break… what would you do? Spread yourself out like a starfish, so at least you could experience ‘zorbing’ before you die… or would you get into the fetal  position in the hope that you go limp enough to bounce?

*If you think that’s impressive you should see some of the things I come across when I go through my boyfriend’s laundry.


9 comments… read them below or add one

Toni January 9, 2012 at 9:19 pm

Nothing but nothing else matters in this post except for…I love your dad – ‘oh yeah, I proper thought we were going to die’ hahaha =)


Lady Daa Doo January 10, 2012 at 3:26 am

What a beautiful way to spend some time, suspended over a rainforest! I’ve done a similar thing over the Blue Mountains near Sydney. It’s scary yet beautiful.

I laughed at your recount of your mum shrieking!! I enjoyed reading your stories about Australia and I am enjoying reading your other posts. I decided to give you an award because I think you are hilarious and have the best bucket list around :-))


Cari January 10, 2012 at 3:33 am

Heehee! Well despite entrapment, absolutely stunning!


Monica January 10, 2012 at 11:00 am

Haha, I LOVE the way your dad tried to act all calm! So funny. I love Kuranda National Park and, thankfully, I didn’t have any near death experiences :)


Mayor Gia January 10, 2012 at 10:57 pm

Those pictures are beautiful but that sounds TERRIFYING to even think about!! I’m not a fan of heights either.


Jen January 11, 2012 at 12:02 am

Toni: Lol I know, it’s the fact he automatically assumed she would make dash to jump out the car!xx

Lady: Ahhhh, this really made my day, Thanks my lovely xxxx

Cari: It really was xx

Mon: Did you go on it too, would love to see your pics/what you thought of Kuranda town!xx

Mayor: Thanks lovely, me neither, especially with nothing to grasp on to! xx


Jenn January 11, 2012 at 12:30 am

LMAO!! Oh You are so funny!! I can’t imagine being in a small little tin can–strung up a few hundred feet from the ground on a cable wire about as big as my index finger. Okay–maybe slightly larger than that–but yeah–I get it. OH MY four minutes had to be an eternity.

But your father is down right comical!! LMAO!!

Thanks for sharing :) Jenn


Achieve Your 100 January 11, 2012 at 12:40 pm

Wow those photos do look stunning. Good luck in achieving your bucket list.


Bee January 15, 2012 at 4:54 am

So is it completely wrong that I live in Eastern Australia and not only didn’t realise there was a skyrail thing around here somewhere, but I have also never heard of Kuranda National Rainforest? Now I really want to go though, but I think I would be along the lines of your mum, pissing my pants and freaking out the tourists.


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