Caving Adventure at Center Parcs Whinfell Forest

Caving Adventure at Center Parcs Whinfell Forest

Every four years I like to visit Center Parcs Whinfell Forest with friends. OK, I’ll reword that… My first visit to Center Parcs Whinfell Forest was four years ago and my second visit was last weekend. Out of all the activities and experiences to do there I really wanted to try the caving experience. However, none of our friends were up for it and at the time Abigail was 3 years old and Imogen was 6. I could have caved by myself, but instead, I simply scrapped the idea.

Center parks 2014

When the same group of friends started plans to visit Whinfell Forest again, I started to try and work out how I would go Caving. I asked my friends and they said no. I asked Imogen, she wasn’t mean as she’s not a fan of enclosed spaces. Abigail, on the other hand, was up for the adventure. I had a caving buddy, next, I Had to book it.

Caving Adventure at Center Parcs

First of all, why did I want to go caving at Center Parcs? Our friend Lee said, “I’ll take you down South Shields and we can explore the {insert name that I forgot} caves”. I said, No Thanks. The Reason is I like the idea of adventure, but I’m not a big fan of risk or real danger. Mild Peril maybe, or suggested imminent doom is acceptable.

Caving adventure Center Parcs Whinfell Forest

This comes back to my love of theme parks. A controlled environment and set up, where you’ll come out the other side alive. Skydiving is not my thing, but I’d try out a fireman’s pole!

The Caving adventure at Center Parcs is everything I wanted. A bit of climbing and something different. And with my 7 years old Adventure buddy, we could tackle anything.

Inside the Caving Adventure

The Caves are made out of fiberglass. The easiest way to imagine it is like a climbing wall, but you’re on the inside of it.

Caving Adventure

Unfortunately, we had to empty our pockets, remove jewelry, watches, wristbands, and cardigans! As a result, I haven’t any photos on the inside, but this is a good example of what is inside!

Caving Adventure  Caving Adventure

It is essentially a set of lumpy tunnels, varying in diameter, in the darkness.

Caving in Safety

Anyway, before we could start climbing around in the caves we needed our safety gear. A hard hat, with a head torch, Elbow Pads, and Knee pads. As Abigail is on the smaller end of the safety gear range, she needed added elastic bands to keep her elbow pads in place. Boy! were we grateful for the padding they gave!

We followed the instructor tunnel at a time then regrouped in a chamber. There were two chambers that were at the center of multiple tunnels to crawl through. The first one was called the Cheese Press. Tpass through this one you needed to put an arm through then your head, followed by kicking your body through until you can pull your self along.

Next up we went along a tunnel that involved climiboung out of an overhang head first!

Caving Adventure

For me, it was a challenge, as an adult my joins flex less than a 7-year-old. My bones are longer than a 7-year-old and generally, my agility isn’t comparable. To negotiate the overhang I held onto a plastic stalactite pulled my self forward jammed my head into a hollow in the rock and dragged my slow-moving leg into a Z shape to reach the ground. Abigail, simple sat, swiveled around and jumped.

Next was time for role play. Let’s imagine that the batteries in the head torches had run out. Or in other words, we climbed the same route in pitch darkness.

The next challenge we faced was the water plunge. When caving in the real dangerous world, you may need to submerge yourself into an icy pond to pass through a gorge. In safe caving adventure, we had to plunge into a ball pool. Push our heads through the balls and under a wall of rock.

It was Everything I hoped it to be!

I loved every minute of the Caving experience. Abigail wanted to do it again and I was super impressed that she wasn’t phased by any aspect of it. When we climbed back out into the real world, we were so glad that we’d stripped off all over layers bar T-shirts. It was so hot in there and we were sweating.

Adults were £22 and Children £18. For the combined £40, I feel it was worth it for 1 hours experience. Adding also that I have not seen this anywhere else.

 

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