Galloway flying high with UK’s longest zip wire

GALLOWAY is now flying high in the outdoor activities field following the official opening of the UK’s longest zip wire on Monday.

Laggan Outdoor, overlooking Fleet Bay by Mossyard, Gatehouse, proudly hold the crown of housing the 820-metre long wire, which can reach speeds of 50mph and which was being pre-booked by keen adrenaline junkies weeks ago.

Pic � Sandy Young 07970 268 944'Laggan Outdoor Activity centre ( Gatehouse of Fleet,'Dumfries and Galloway) home to the  UK's Longest Zip Wire.'Pictured '''W: www.scottishphotographer.com'E: sj.young@virgin.net'T: 07970 268 944

Pic � Sandy Young 07970 268 944'Laggan Outdoor Activity centre ( Gatehouse of Fleet,'Dumfries and Galloway) home to the UK's Longest Zip Wire.'Pictured '''W: www.scottishphotographer.com'E: sj.young@virgin.net'T: 07970 268 944

Visible from the A75, the £100,000 double-wire experience is a real coup for the region, already popular for its rich outdoor pursuits.

On a misty Monday, some of the first daredevils gathered - despite the rain - to give it a whirl, with the resulting reaction being along the lines of: “Can I do it again?”

Having leapt from the platform above Fleet Bay and into a shroud of fog, lucky participants said the lack of a view on this particularly typical Scottish morning simply added to the heart-pumping experience.

VisitScotland’s Sharon Makepeace said: “It was like jumping into a cloud, then out of nowhere a few cows appeared beneath! I think it may have helped my nerves, not being able to see anything. But it was a fantastic experience, and I think it will really help bring people to the region.”

Emerging from the gloom, Douglas McDavid, Selkirk Arms, joint first down the zipline after the official opening. GG 0307014 GG

Emerging from the gloom, Douglas McDavid, Selkirk Arms, joint first down the zipline after the official opening. GG 0307014 GG

Duncan McConchie, director of Laggan, said the wire was the culmination of more than two years’ dreaming.

He said at the launch: “Having spent night and day over the last three months getting the wire ready for launch, I was really keen to try it out and it’s fair to say I was blown away.

“We first had the idea for this a couple of years ago and have been working to make it a reality ever since. “We hope the experience will attract and thrill people from all over the country - adrenaline-seekers, active family groups and companies looking for a unique team building challenge.”

The centre employs 14 part-time staff and one full-time, as well as family members lending a hand and all are fully trained - so be assured that all safety requirements will be met before you take your jump.

With Lagan Outdoor Centre just visable through the gloom, Margaret McConchie, helped by Grandson Duncan cuts the ribbon to open the longest zip wire in Britain. GG 0307015 12

With Lagan Outdoor Centre just visable through the gloom, Margaret McConchie, helped by Grandson Duncan cuts the ribbon to open the longest zip wire in Britain. GG 0307015 12

A recent survery of visitors to the area reported that 40 percent of them had come to use Laggan Outdoor, and with the zip wire just another attraction for the hillside centre, it’s easy to see why.

The two wires run side-by-side meaning you can share the experience with a friend for £15 each, or if you’re keen to go solo it’s £30. A second go will only set you back £10 - be sure to have that extra note with you because you’re guaranteed to want a repeat.