River Rope Swing at Bendeela Recreation Area, Kangaroo Valey

River Rope Swing at Bendeela Recreation Area, Kangaroo Valey


Posted 2023-01-08 by Kay in Wollongongfollow
What is it? A play on a high rope swing over a river.

Today my boy Jake, age 10, requested that we go to a Rope Swing into a river at the Bendeela Recreation Area, 1 hour, and 20 minutes South West of Wollongong.

We set off on the M1 Southwards and followed it for about 45 minutes to Berry. At Berry, we made a pit stop to buy ice creams and travel lollies from the Berry Sweet Treats & Ice Creamery on the corner of Queen Street and Alexandra St, and to stretch our legs at the Boongaree Nature Play Park (Rotary Nature Play Park) on North Street.

After a lovely break there, we headed for the West end of Queen Street and onto Kangaroo Valley Road. This is a twisty narrow road in places, hence the travel lollies purchased for travel sickness. From there, we took Moss Vale road and then Bendeela Road until we came to the sign for Bendeela Recreation Area. This portion of the trip took about 40 minutes.

At the recreation area, we passed the attendant and followed the road until we came to the third turn-off on the right. From there, we could see a place to access the river and a big trailer with kayaks. We parked on the grass before hopping out to investigate.

It was bustling with people coming and going launching kayaks and inflatables. Spotting a teenage boy, I asked if there was a rope swing. He pointed out a swing on the far side of the river.

Jake popped on his life jacket and suggested we grab the boogie boards we keep in the car. We paddled across and there was no noticeable current so it was a leisurely paddle. On the far side, our new teen friend was already playing on the swing. We hauled ourselves up the very slippery, muddy, steep bank by hanging on to a rope tied around a tree. Our friend had acquired a long stick which he used to hook the rope swing to pull it in, then he offered me a turn.

I got a good grip on the stick, and reminded myself I must let go at the highest point no matter what and where I was off. Flying through the air was great. Reaching the highest point of the swing out, I had time to think, blimey that is a three-metre drop, before letting go and sploshing fast into the river. Down I went then swum back up again, it was exhilarating. I made my way back to the bank and scrambled up again. This time I bottled it momentarily and let go on the downswing, sploosh I went and sunk 50 cm into deep silt on the bottom before swimming back up to the surface. I had a couple more fabulous turns before leaving it to the boys, who had fantastic fun swinging and splashing in and assessing their landings.

After lots of fun, we paddled back across. Wet, tired and very happy that we'd made the absolute best of our day, we made our way home.

160415 - 2023-06-14 17:41:51


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