Abseiling and Canyoning for Beginners at Netravali Waterfalls

Abseiling and Canyoning for Beginners at Netravali Waterfalls

Netravali Waterfalls – A hidden location.

What is Canyoning?

An obvious question and I read a pamphlet pasted inside a cafe near St. Anthony’s Chapel, Calangute

Europe/America from the last 20 years and last 10 years all over the world
– Narrow freshwater rivers from top-bottom avoiding all-natural obstacles
– abseil with a rope into waterfalls
– jump from different heights into a natural pool below
– climb small rocks, underwater passages, natural slides, etc., etc.

And a thought – joining the sports – new and exciting for sure

I called and a few questions from the phone receiver:

1. No scared of height

2. You should not be scared of water

3. You should not be scared of a spider

4. Everybody is scared of snakes but you should not be terrified

5. No back problem, leg problem – in short – good fitness

6. Swimming if known is good

And reply- Yes, no scare – no terrified – swimming I know since childhood
Finally the day I on tour towards a new sport. Canyoning – it took time to spell it correctly.
Matthew/Roberto – Canyoning guide and five of us – all tourists but Yes, I – The only Indian with zero experience driving towards South Goa from Baga – The office location of Canyoning.

Reberto was driving – Matthew was chatting and sharing information about the exciting sports. Not a very old sport but was first introduced by Manu in India approx. 10 years ago when he visited Goa. For the last 5 years Matthew/Roberto are with him as guides. Manu is a worldwide certified Canyoning professional instructor discovering within Jungles streams/rivers good for Canyoning.

Brave – isn’t it?

Approx. 90 km journey by jeep towards South Goa we had a stop at Tanishkar’s Spice Farm & Ecological Rest House. The purpose is to change our clothes and wear Canyoning equipment/clothes only provided by guides. All other clothes will be left with the plantation guys.

Wet suit – to protect from cold-water

Helmet – maybe rocks fall in the jungle

Arnes – a belt around to climb

Carabina/Eight and Rope and Shoes

Nicely checked by two professionals, and we towards the jeep to another destination which is within the jungle, another 15 minutes drive. The jeep was parked – we were inside the real jungle path – naturally made as someone has passed or walked days before. I am sure the Canyoning guys are the only ones. The path is narrow, and the walk is long sometimes high ups and sometimes high down – sometimes scary too. Matthew was leading – checking all bushes/tree branches whether any snake was on the way or not or resting. About 20-25 mins. of walking – the sound of water. Yes, we stop at a stream full of naturally flowing water and natural surroundings.

Sauri – The name of the trip.

Philip was waiting – a photographer cum Canyoning guide And Semon – trainee guide.

A small class on top of a flowing stream and finally I without experience displaying bravery skills while abseiling. As Philip was clicking photographs I posed in the middle of abseiling giving flying kisses to the camera and was warned by Matthew for safety reasons because one of my hands was in the air, which is dangerous to do. I learned the first lesson – not to repeat it again. Never ever leave your hands from the rope, and follow the instructions of the guide otherwise danger is not too far. Anything can happen if I fall. Anyways, slowly-n-slowly I succeed. I guess it was 6 meters abseiling while walking 90 degrees on top of rocks with the help of a Canyoning rope while the stream was in full flow and the rocks slippery. Others did the same, and we all followed the stream following Matthew/Roberto.

A jump of 3 meters straight into the natural pool down below. I watch and I jump – successfully done. And a few swimming skills and another jump of 5 meters – done. There were altogether 6 jumps consisting of 5-8 meters. Many times we have to sit down and slide slowly-n-slowly on top of rocks to reach a location that is for jumping and not for abseiling and two times abseiling may be because not good for jumps.

Fight your fears i.e., Canyoning – Roberto said.

I guess we did about 1 km of Canyoning consisting of 2 abseiling and 6 jumps and many slides and climbing small rocks, walking within flowing cold water, etc., etc. I was shivering though I was wearing a wet suit provided by guides – The water was too cold – the sunlight was not directly within the jungle. We were deep into the valley – will say – surrounded by a jungle.

Manu – The Boss
Yes, finally we met Manu at the end of 1 km Canyoning – shake hands. I remember Discovery Channel and Animal Planet and thought about such people whom we watch on television only but I today meeting one and i.e., Manu.

Anyways, 3 of us are going back home and the others are taking a rest and having snacks and again for more difficult Canyoning. I was too tired and for first-timers, 1 km is enough.

Going back is another challenge as a new path that is steep And very very narrow. I fumbled once and had to grab a small tree trunk to save myself from falling down – The tree was full of white ants.

We reach the plantation area again. Food was served – buffet system all included in the price (Rs. 2950 for Sauri trip) – I was really very very hungry/tired but will say to myself – Did I do this in real? Yes, I did. Why I am asking myself a question is because believing what I did is unbelievable. And while having food, we talk about equipment safety.

All equipment used during Canyoning is purchased from Europe and is CE marked, which means a security standard. In India, we have the ISI mark to explain in simple words what CE means. The rope used during abseiling can lift weights up to 3,000 kg – no worries – we are mostly around 50- 75 kg mostly. Additional care is taken for ropes by putting plastic around where the rope meets rocks to protect it from scratches by the rock while abseiling. October/November Canyoning is started within Goa and in March it ends and the team leaves for Europe.

The other few trips which are medium are known as Biju and The earth And a few more medium plus, Hard ones, and Super Hard ones having jumps of 12/15/16/22 meters. And within Karnataka another one that is 60 meters upscale – Hard plus And within Maharashtra jungle close to Goa a very very hard one.

If you have fears and are unable to fight them out, do not join Canyoning. If you are stuck in the jungle while doing Canyoning because of your fear getting you out of the jungle is trouble for guides and you will be charged extra for that. Before joining, please ask yourself whether or not you can jump from heights/swim/upscale, etc., etc. But in short, it is an exciting sport teaching you in a practical way how to win challenges – how to win yourself.

Canyoning – will do again – I said to myself – Let’s see when.

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