Jump 39, Swansea

If you read my post about the last jump, then on this jump, I’m going to be first out of the plane, and I’m sat next to dave howerski (legend) and my live spotting is good to go 🙂

Plans for this jump, stable backwards exit, try out my new (second hand) time-out audible altimeter (which will be my 2nd audible) get my spotting signed off, a pre declared landing and trying to extend the range of my canopy during landing, to get me a little further towards my landing spot. No pressure on myself at all :p

On the way up, im sat IN the door, dave takes me through the spotting process a few times on the way up, at set intervals, i hear my audible altimeter beeping, as it should, so, so far, alls good. Then we get to 6,500 feet, and theres patches of cloud, EVERYWHERE. Everyone else ive spoken to about doing their spotting, they said there wasnt a cloud in the sky, they looked down, and ‘theres the dropzone’, for me, this will be like looking through a white waffle……

I plan my jump, and landing out in my head, sun to my right under canopy means the winds behind me, try my backwards exit, then i suddenly realise, i have a camera flyer girl sitting on my lap, what better time to ask for a few photos for facebook while im in the door 😀

At 12,000 feet, the ‘get ready’ light goes on, so i lift the door, its locked into place, and i look down, its like looking through a chess board, I really dont know if i can do this, and even though im being supervised, im the spotter for this whole plane load of people. i look through the gaps, and i then recognise things, i know where i am :), i verify with dave, and am given the thumbs up, just as the green light goes on 🙂 i double check, and im told to jump, no need to tell me twice, and im gone, backwards, and can see Teej, the camera girl, with her head out of the door watching me fall away. With looking at the cloud and the gaps, i forgot that id asked her to take a few pics lol :p

my backwards exit still turned a few times, then i did a few backflips, 360 turns and a little tracking in the direction the plane had come from, as i knew there was no danger of there being anyone there, and i think this was the langest track ive done so far, before opening my canopy at around 3,500 feet.

Under canopy, i headed straight for the holding area, and was working out my final approach height, based on my last jump, to be around 1000 feet then turn into wind at around 600 feet. approaching the flag for landing, at one stage i thought i was going to actually land on the flag, or the person very close to it, so i used my risers to extend my reach a little, and land past the flag, which took me about 20M past my original intended landing spot, added an ‘extend the range of the canopy’ kark to my paperwork, and another succesfull pre declared landing, with a perfect flare

I was close enough to the car park for my son to see me landing, and as i had a face mask on to keep the cold out, he said ‘dad, that was awesome, you looked like a navy seal with your helmet and mask on, you landed then turned round and just started rolling your parachute up’

that last 3 seconds comment by my son, made this the best jump ive ever done 🙂

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