Rope Swinging In The Dark

Smith and Morehouse at Night

This is Smith and Morehouse. It’s a beautiful reservoir just outside of Oakley, UT. About an hour away from Park City, and home to an awesome rope swing.

In the picture above, I was flying through the air in mid August of 2016. That’s what it looks like during the day, it’s super fun, and a nice solid drop.

This is what the approach to take off looks like, a nice wakeboard handled rope attached between two other ropes between the two trees. There is a steep take off, but it’s super fun, at least if you like jumping into lakes in the summer and falling out of the air to do so.

However, yesterday for our celebration of the longest day of the year we decided to go for a trip up to the lake to try out the rope swing this year. We got up there as the sun was set, and there was barely enough light to see the trail. We flipped on our lights shortly after as we walked up the trail climbing up, over and under fallen trees.

The trail follows a gravel path to the water flow crossing and then up a small single track dirt trail. It meanders along the lake’s edge until you arrive at a rope swing.

By the time we got to the rope swing it was fully dark. Stars were coming out and there was only a little bit of moonlight.

Since I was the only one in our party who had been there I offered to go first. We found a gnarled stick that was just long enough to reach out and grab the handle of the rope swing.

Pulled it back and precariously walked backwards up the hill to the takeoff point.

Looking out through those trees you could faintly see the water and we had a flashlight or two shining on where we were swinging, with the faint shadow casting off into the dark water.

“Here goes nothing.” And off I went.

The ‘swinging’ portion of the rope swing lasts a solid 2 second and then you stop moving forward, at which point you let go and plummet towards the water. That I did.

Splash. Swim to for air as quick as possible and gasp for air. That water was freezing cold when you hit the water. Furthermore, you couldn’t really see when you were going to hit the water so you just had to brace for impact and try not to fall in weird.

Once I was swimming out that huge smile hits your face. Way more scary at night, but also probably more fun in a lot of ways, plus no one else out there. Scurried back up the hill and we all did it a couple times before taking off.

I’ll definitely be going back, day or night, it’s fun either way.

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