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Andy’s Travel Diary

Wednesday, 10 May 2006

Location: Sydney, Australia

MapSYDNEY - I'VE HAD THE CLIMB OF MY LIFE
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Decided in a fit of madness that it would be a good idea to climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge, the one used in the New Year celebrations. Images of me in a spiderman suit with suction cups and a daredevil determination on my face should be discarded right nowÖitís an organised climb. Only 3 bridge climbs in the world. Sydney is the original and best though (bias?!). 160 dollars but worth every penny. It was a 3 and a half hour adventure from start to finish beginning with me donning my first (and last) ever jump suit.

Also required to take a breathalizer test. Passed it but i think they wanted to check the results again as our gang was rather exciteable, silly and had to be told everything multiple times.

Started well. We were only 20 metres up in the air and already i couldnít look down. After navigating some rather hairy ladders and catwalks we emerged onto the top of the bridge arch right next to the Eastern tower and started our ascent to the summit.

This bit was the least scary as the arch is quite wide and so one feels relatively safe. Besides all you can concentrate on is the 360 degree view of the city, the opera house and the harbour. Really spectacular.

Gorgeous day for it. Absolutely cloudless, which meant we could see all the way out West to the Blue Mountains and East to the sea. Luckily we got on an afternoon climb so the sunlight was less harsh.

Our guide on the climb provided a running commentary of the bridge, its construction and the sites we could see far below. He also provided some much needed assistance when i refused to cross from the summit of the pylon we ascended to the summit of the pylon we descended (itís seriously high - 140 metres! And you can see all the way down because the catwalk is grated). Lastly he provided a calming influence when i launched into a tirade of swearing and sweating at random points throughout the climbÖi donít like heights.

If you go on this website http://www.bridgeclimb.com/ there is a picture on the front page which shows you exactly where i was (though is not actually a picture of me). No cameras were allowed on the climb, but i did get a picture of me at the summit, itís a hard copy though and has been taken home by one of my friends. Mum you should receive it sooon. Also received a certificate for proof.

After the climb we stumbled into a nearby pub for some much needed refreshment. I highly recommend the Glenmore hotel, it has a rooftop terrace that overlooks Circular Quay and the opera house to the left and has great views of the skyline to the right.