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Monday, 20th February 2017

Extreme Canyoning

If you want to conquer some of the most extreme, technical canyons available to canyoneers the Outdoor Capital of the UK is the place to jump right in.

Extreme Canyoning

Canyoning entails descending a hill/munro in the canyon, with a wetsuit, protective gear and a buoyancy aid. You get down by means of abseiling, cliff jumping, sliding off waterfalls, swimming, climbing and zip lining. Canyoning is a great day out, and extreme canyoning is even better!

Fort William-based adventure centre, Vertical Descents, specialises in Canyoning, and actually trains Canyon guides from all over the UK! As a result, they do a variety of extreme canyoning days out, ranging from half days to full days. Their canyons include Inchree, the Natrach, Grey Maires Tail, Dundonnel, Ben Nevis canyon and they performed recent first descent down Sump Kosi.

In normal water, Inchree is a great day out for anyone wanting to do a half-day activity.  The canyon itself is a big open gorge that gives you loads of options during the descent. For this reason it’s suitable for groups of mixed ability – if you don’t fancy the 8 metre cliff jump there’s an easy guided scramble instead. And if you’re not up for the super-intimidating waterfall jump you can take the zip line down - arguably more fun anyway! In big water, Inchree is extreme as any other canyon in the UK!

Watch a video from Inchree >

The Nathrach is a full day epic! With big abseils and even bigger jumps, Vertical Descents takes big and small groups down here, and the only pre-requisite is that you’re up for it! Located in-between  Kinlochleven and the A82, it’s perfect for anyone staying south of Fort William looking for a full on activity! Also an old favourite with Military groups – give it a shot and see what the Army do on their days off!

As of yet, Grey Mare’s Tail is one of the most extreme, technical canyons available to canyoneers in the UK. Vertical Descents recommend this canyon to those with a bit of climbing/white water/canyoning experience, as once you start descending, there’s only one way out this slot canyon-! Grey Mare’s culminates with a 90metre abseil down an overhang, by the side of a huge waterfall – not for those scared of heights! Located in Kinlochleven, it’s close to the A82 and well worth trying, if you’ve got what it takes!

Dundonnel is thought to be the UK’s best canyon. Although located in Ullapool, Vertical Descents are the only guys that run trips down it. But be warned, it’s not for the faint hearted – big jumps, bigger abseils, sumps (under water hollows you need to swim through) and a steep descent characterise this crazy slot canyon.

Sump Kosi is the newest edition to Vertical Descents back catalogue of extreme canyons. Situated near Glen Roy, it’s a mini Dundonnel with a 2 metre sump, cliff jumps into tiny rock pools, a few intimidating abseils and spectacular rock formations. Only discovered by the team last year, so far only 3 canyoneers have been down it!!

Sump Kosi Video >

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