Jan 30

Skydive, The Expo, the bar queues

Skydive the expo, hundreds of skydivers, thousands of stories, nowhere near enough bar staff.

This was my 2nd expo. We drove up from south wales to nottingham on the friday, booked into the hotel, went for food, then queued at the bar whilst talking to other skydivers. This was a common routine for the whole weekend, but, in amounst all of this, there was speeches from developers, experts, sales people, world champions, bar managers (apologizing), and all sorts of people, it was a brilliant event.

I met Mel, who i knew from the uk skydiver forum, who for a long time i had assumed was a middle aged guy, but who is actually a young woman, who was inspired to skydive after reading this very blog, which makes this whole blog suddenly mean a lot more to me (but its still taken me 6 weeks to get around to typing up this post lol). So, if a guy my age, can inspire a girl mel’s age to start skydiving just from this blog, and youre reading this thinking ‘can i really do this?’ then the answer is ‘OF COURSE YOU CAN!!’

Get out there and give it a go, and if ive inspired you a bit, buy me a beer at the next expo, but, be warned, the queue is horrific

Jan 16

Jump 154, 3 months later

3 months to the day since my last jump, and im typing this up nearly 7 weeks later, yep, things have been slowwwwwwww.

Back in good old sylvia once again, and hoping to this time get a jump out of her, things are looking good, theres hardly a cloud in the sky, theres NO wind, and im going to be first out. This jumps going to happen. 10,000 feet, and i feel like a student again, the nerves have kicked in, my guts are tight, and i love it. Approaching 12000 feet, the red light goes on and the door is open. I go through my emergency routine for the umpteenth time, thie light goes green, im given the thumbs up, my nerves are gone, this is why im here, and i somersault out of the door, before opening up, into a diving track away from the plane and leveling out. I do a few backflips, just because i can, laughing to myself like a madman, before levelling things out, waving off and throwing my pilot chute to deploy my main canopy at ~ 3500 feet.

My canopy opens as expected (phew), but, there is no ‘into wind’ position to hold. Other canopies start to open, and as theyre smaller, are already overtaking me towards the ground. I enter the landing pattern, trying to fit myself in, but i know ive screwed this up, im too low on my cross wind, even though theres no wind, so i carry out a very slow brake turn after ensuring theres nobody behind me. I come screaming in a lot faster than im used to, so as i flare, i lift my legs, turn sideways and decide im going to skid it off, thats when i saw the puddle/swamp.

There was an 18 foot skid mark in the mud, no injuries, but a lot of washing to do. I somehow even managed to get mud inside my helmet, and rightfully got a telling off for the low turn.

But, it was lush to be in the air again 🙂

Jan 09

Nearly jumped

Its been nearly 3 months since my last jump, the weather has been bad, really bad, but, the planes fixed, the dropzone is open, and, theres a gap in the weather, so, we are kitted up, manifested, and in the sky 🙂 yay!!

But, as we get to about 8000 feet, theres heavy cloud outside the plane, and we can see rain. We feel the plane level off at around 9000 feet, and then start to descend, 8500, 8200, 8000, yep, the weather has fooked us again. Ahh well, get strapped back in, and wait for the next break. Which this weekend, didnt come :/