Hi my name is Mark – I live in Bolton. I started slacklining in 2017 using a ratchet strap (literally off the back of a lorry) between two trees in the garden. I was inspired by a You Tube picture of some
guy stood in exposure in the middle of freaky nowhere – just standing in the sky like Vitruvian Man with huge ground clearance and miles from the cliff edges. I was gobsmacked. After years of messing around with ropes and rigging on structures at work, climbing extensively and flying paragliders it immediately grabbed my attention……….. ‘Fffffffffuuuuuuuuuu**k, I gotta find out what that feels like.’
It made my stomach flip and my palms sweat just visualizing how it might feel – a bit of ‘Headpoint fear’ crept in. I knew then I was hooked and it was going to be an incredible and irresistible challenge. I have moved on from the short garden line but I still haven’t found out what it feels like to stand comfortably and in control in exposure on a highline. The journey has been harder than I anticipated – I have been properly bruised and battered many times – haha. Anyways – it’s good for ya and the people I’ve met and the friends I have made in the wider slacking community are the best.
My favourite local spots are Lever Park at Rivington where I rig lines between 6m baby rodeo and 50m longline – pretty much right next to the car.
Initially I was rigging them low down at ‘death tension’ with pulleys gradually the anchors have moved over 3m high and my fave lines are tensioned saggy on an Ellington. What3Words operation.funky.digits will put you in the middle of the slacking piste. If you find an old duffer face down in the mud under a line – that will be me.
For mid lines I go to Egerton – a local gritstone quarry where its quick and easy to rig either a 30m or a 40m – both with about 18m ground clearance. Great climbing too!! I have put bomber stake anchors in and also use removable bolt anchors and fat trees. It’s a 5 minute walk in from the car so this is super convenient too. Stake anchors at W3W mount.still.flood and W3W surely.tins.tried.
I like rigging lines and knowing they are bomber af – I like making my own soft shackles, whoopees and rope anchors and knowing they are bomber af. Then I slide out and start to question if they really are bomber af. Haha – a bit of fear keeps you alive. I like to learn off other riggers – always something to learn.
Music wise my ‘Slack’ playlist starts with a bit of Fat Freddy’s Drop and ends with a bit of Blind Melon. Mid-point is Collective Soul passing Link Wray and Skeewiff at the quarter points – it’s all over the place – bit like my head on a highline. Could say, ‘Beginner Getting Better’, but you heard that somewhere already and I ain’t that good.
If you want to get involved like Mark, you can Sign Up Here!