Monday, 30 July 2012

Up at the North Greenwich Arena

We booked weeks ago so had paid our £22 each and yesterday was finally the time for our ascent over the roof of the O2 or North Greenwich Arena as it currently has to be referred to because it's hosting some Olympic events and O2 are not one of the main participating sponsors (pathetic). 

Thirty minutes before our climb it became very dark and forked lightning lit up the sky. On arrival we were told to wait until they got a weather update but that our walk was in jeopardy. I asked how many climbs they had previously had to cancel due to the weather - none. 

Within five minutes we got the nod. Quick safety film and then we were rigged out in "climb suits and given harnesses. Then it was up a staircase to the left of the main O2 entrance and we were ready for our climb. It doesn't look particularly high from that point but the ascent starts at 30 degrees and you have to do a bit of work to get up to the less-steep sections. Fifteen minutes later and we were all atop the Dome and were de-coupled from the safety wire so we could take in the splendid panoramic views of our great City. 

The descent is longer than the ascent as there are no stairs on the other side and you really need to hold on and use the braking system on the safety harness, especially if it's wet, as it was yesterday. All-in-all thoroughly recommended and reasonably priced given it cost £4m to set-up.


Suze said...

Glad to hear your climb went ahead and wasn't lost to the weather and that you had a fun time.

My husband's office overlooks the (old school) Dome and has watched little ants climbing...

Dave said...

Thanks Suze. I felt more like a beetle squeezed into the largest climbing suit they had!