On the 20th of February, Melbourne is set to transform once again as White Night envelopes the city. This year revellers not only have the opportunity to experience a wide range of exhibitions, installations and interactive events – they can also leap face first from a seven-storey building.
Well, they do say White Night Melbourne is about expecting the unexpected.
This year, the team at Rap Jumping is joining in on the festivities by offering a number of adrenaline-fuelled sessions as the sun sets across the city. Once darkness falls, Melbourne will come alive; as you descend from seven storeys up, you’ll be able to experience this impressive vista from a truly unique angle.
Rap Jumping, which in the past has featured on Getaway, Coxy’s Big Break and Today Show, is designed to appeal to both adrenaline junkies and those who want to get out there and face their fears. Past participants who have taken the leap of faith have described it as ‘fantastic’ and ‘so much fun’, with one encouraging others to ‘go face your fears and live a little!’
Sarah, who participated in one of Rap Jumping’s regular daytime sessions, is excited by the prospect of returning to the wall at night: “Really awesome day with fun and professional instructors. They make you feel safe and at ease as you walk off a building! I am really looking forward to coming back for another session at sunset”
Derek Whittingham, who owns and manages the team at Rap Jumping, is thrilled to be taking part in one of the key cultural events on Melbourne’s calendar: “It’s going to be an amazing experience not usually available to the public. You really get a next level experience”
Session times for the night are as follows:
6pm – 8pm (Sunset)
8pm – 10pm
10pm – 12am
Although much of White Night Melbourne is a case of ‘turn up and enjoy’, those who want to partake in a night rap jumping session will need to book as spaces are understandably limited.
Bookings can be made directly via the Rap Jumping website or by calling 1300-780-266.
What is rap jumping?
For the uninitiated, rap jumping is essentially forward-facing abseiling. The type of descent practised by the team at Rap Jumping is basically a cross between ‘Australian rappelling’ and ‘angel jumping’.
Australian rappelling, which is often referred to as the ‘Aussie Rappel’, was developed by the Australian SAS in the 1960s. Attached to the rope by a descender and karabiner, the participant descends face down with their hands at the front of their body for braking. Similar in that it’s performed face-first, Angel jumping requires the participant to pull a certain amount of slack rope through the descender prior to jumping – allowing them to essentially free fall before the rope tightens.
The Rap Jumping team offers a unique combination of the two; participants descend face first and can experience a certain amount of free-fall. However, as a safety measure, their hands must remain on the rope at all times. When rap jumping, the participant is in full control of their descent speed – and there’s also a brake person on every jump to provide assistance.
If you would like to know more about how Rap Jumping compares to other rappelling methods, check out this article.
The rap jumping sessions on offer during White Night Melbourne are designed to offer participants more than just an adrenaline rush. Each participant is accompanied by an experienced instructor who shows them how to complete the jump correctly and safely. It’s about more than just getting down the side of the building; some emphasis is placed on learning about the rope work involved.
A night to remember!
An event in its fourth year, the 2016 edition of White Night Melbourne is set to be the biggest yet. An increasing number of businesses are jumping in on the action, providing the public with endless options once the sun goes down. Descending face first down the side of a seven-story building is one such option; an option that is sure to appeal to the thrill seekers amongst us who want to do more than admiring the city lights.
Although White Night Melbourne is promoted as a ‘night to plan not to have any plans’, a night rap jumping session is one activity you’ll certainly want to have pencilled in!