Casually Climbing Up (and falling down) Mount Olympus

Just hanging on for dear life. I actually slipped and fell down right after this picture.
Just hanging on for dear life. I actually slipped and fell down right after this picture.

Truth moment: I’m afraid of heights. I mean really afraid. I’ve never been on a roller coaster before, I hate going to baseball games because I’m afraid of how high up the seats are and I’m even afraid to go down the escalator (that’s a real phobia so stop your laughing).

So I don’t know what was going through my head when one of the trips we were offered to go on involved canyoning with a company called Baseline.

Canyoning is pretty much jumping off Mount Olympus and into the water. Some jumps can range from as little (little, please!) as 25 feet to 50 ft or more.

I think I was dehydrated or something when I signed up because I don’t like nature or hiking. I’m from New York, the most we do is run after buses or trains.

I figured I’d try to conquer my fear but I won’t pretend like I actually did. I can’t lie, I didn’t jump. I tried three times. First we went on a small twenty minute hike, the two men from Baseline gave us instructions on how to jump properly so we didn’t hurt ourselves and how to make a knot and properly secure our harnesses to a rope if we needed to rappel down. It sounded simple enough and I figured we’d jump off a small little cliff, maybe 10 ft, and I would be okay. As we walked to the first one, slipping and sliding in the water, tripping over rocks and trying to ignore the bugs around us, the fear seeped into me and never left.

I was supposed to be the third person to jump but my body didn’t budge from its position. Swinging my arms and trying to jump off proved useless because my legs were sending a strong signal to my brain that we weren’t going anywhere.

Even though I didn’t jump I’m proud of myself. Just signing up was a big deal for me. The day was filled with firsts–my first hike, the first time I didn’t care I was swimming with bugs, dirt and leaves and I even went down water slides, something I’m too afraid to do whenever I go to water parks.

How many people can honestly say they rappelled down Mount Olympus and slid down it too?

Trying to get my body used to the cold water.
Trying to get my body used to the cold water
Getting ready to hike up Mount Olympus in our bikinis.
Getting ready to hike up Mount Olympus in our bikinis.
Our view from Mount Olympus.
Our view from Mount Olympus.
Nathan, one of our guides, tying my shoe before I went down. Remember, safety first!
Nathan, one of our guides, tying my shoe before I went down. Remember, safety first!

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The group of girls I was with. They were daring--they all jumped!
The group of girls I was with. They were daring–they all jumped!
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