What the Hell, Let’s Jump Out of a Plane! Skydiving with Skydive the Wasatch.

It was a breezy, beautiful day on May 2nd in Nephi, Utah. The sky was a robust blue with big puffs of white clouds. It was Remington’s 32nd Birthday. There we were, all six of us, ready and waiting to jump out of a rickety old airplane, to be reminded of how alive we really are.

As instructed, we grouped together in a corner of the hangar and watched a video about the dangers of skydiving. At the same time, initialing paperwork  as we quite literally signed our lives away (and any accountability for them). “Someone may be grossly negligent with your equipment, the airplane, and your life. This could lead to your death!”, boomed the voice of the inventor of tandem skydiving.

Up until that point, I had only allowed the positive thoughts to take precedence. I was “putting my trust into the experience”. Watching this video felt like a, “Can’t say I didn’t warn you!” And POOF! Just like that–a negative thought burst into my mind: I hadn’t given my son a proper hug or kiss “goodbye”! What if this WAS it?  Then I immediately ejected the negativity. Hell, if we were to go out this way, at least he would know that his parents were risk takers if anything at all. That’s a legacy I wouldn’t mind leaving behind. Besides, I thought, “How many times a day do these guys make the jump? They’re still alive! We’ll be fine!” That’s about all I could do to kick the possibilities away.

**These photos are mostly of Remington! My mother got him the photo/video package for his birthday!***

Getting Ready!
Getting Ready!

Since it was Rem’s birthday, we went first. We slid into our blue “Ghostbuster”-like jumpsuits, zipped them up, and then our tandem partners helped us with our harnesses. My tandem partner was a tall fellow with shaggy reddish-brown hair. His piercing blue eyes held my gaze for seconds at a time. As he tightened my harness, I could only wonder what was going on in his mind. Perhaps he was trying to get a sense for my level of fear/anxiety.  So, I just smiled.

DCIM100GOPRO

Getting Ready to SKYDIVE! Muah! Just in case its the last one!

Remington’s partner (pictured in photos below) was outgoing and filled with funny chatter, which we both appreciated. We hobbled over to the plain and climbed in.

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear – not absence of fear.”
― Mark Twain

Once the doors were shut and the engine was screaming, my eyes had a chance to dance around the plane. Above me, the roof had been repaired via duct tape and pieces of it were sewn together with a thick leather thread. Against my left side was the door we would jump out of, covered in stickers, some very worn and faded. And somewhere, there was a crack that was sending a rip of cold air just along my side,  a reminder to not get too comfortable. And then I noticed the pilot was wearing a parachute, I couldn’t decide whether it was comical or relieving. 

Remington sitting in the back of the plane!
Remington sitting in the back of the plane!

Remington and I didn’t say much on the ride up. We just looked at one another, sharing toothy grins back and forth mutually thinking, “What the FU&* are we doing!? I dunno but I like it!” The whole time I just kept thinking how lucky I am to have a guy who gives into my wild ideas. 

Over the next twenty minutes, we traveled up, and up, and up.  Remington and I were smushed in, facing one another. Words were scarce, but we talked back and forth with our eyes. Pretty soon we would be seen from the ground as mere dots to dropping from the sky!

Over Mt. Nebo
Over Mt. Nebo

In no time, our plane was well over Mount Nebo (elev. 11,928 ft). Both Remington and myself shimmied our way onto our tandem partners’ laps. There were a couple of boner jokes (lewd, albeit true) which shook off the nervous tension, perfectly.

My partner asked me to put on my goggles. Next thing you know, he flings open the door. The wind came barreling in. Loudly. Unabashedly. Just the way nature does.  As he had instructed, I pulled my left leg towards my chest and then placed it on platform just out side of the plane. The wind was sending my skin in ripples across my face (from what Remington later mentioned). I looked downwards, gripped my right knee, pulled it in to my chest and place it on the platform. My partner got his leg out–and we LEPT.

Remington about to take the LEAP!
Remington about to take the LEAP!

We fell. Spinning. Tumbling down to the ground we came from. I hoisted my hips forward and held my arms up and gave into the fall. The Earth below us was painted together like a geographic puzzle. The wind was fierce. It felt almost like diving into the biggest wave you can imagine (the kind that can kick your ass and tumble you for what feels like miles), but this one comprised of only wind. Suffocating wind.

FREEEE FALLIN!
FREEEE FALLIN!

But then, wait. I couldn’t breathe. I began beating on my chest. I cupped my hand over my mouth. Nothing! I felt helpless. The wind pounded against my body, forced itself through my nostrils and out of my ears. There was nothing more I could do but just be with the experience, breath or no breath. Just presence. {I would like to say too, no one else said they felt as though they couldn’t breathe, I think maybe it’s because my nose was pretty stopped up}.

AWESOME!
AWESOME!
Definitely one of my favorite photos!
Definitely one of my favorite photos!
Whooo!
Whooo!
Checking out the view!
Checking out the view over Nephi, UT!

We fell about 20-30 seconds…but it felt like forever. Then, I felt the chute pull and whip us to what felt like a screeching halt mid-air. Instant serenity. Everything I was feeling stopped and transformed. The loudness went to quiet. The intensity went to calm. The crazy helpless feeling was now relief. And we just floated along.

DCIM100GOPRO
🙂

We twirled and spun, side to side in circles as he steered us. It was a stomach tickle, but nothing in comparison to the free fall. We twisted and turned and finally, we approached the ground. I lifted my legs just as I was instructed and down we went and we landed very smoothly.

DCIM100GOPRO
Made it down clean and dry haha

Just a few minutes later and I could see Remington descending and ultimately landing, sliding in on his butt like he was hitting home base. Once we reconvened, we almost skipped inside to share our, “Holy Craps! That was awesomes” and stripped off our jumpsuits.

Yes, it was a bit crazy, but only for about 1/60th of the actual time we spent there. If you’re wondering whether or not you should go skydiving, DO IT! You may just surprise yourself and want to go again :).

Gearing up!
Gearing up!

IMG_1059 IMG_1071 IMG_1076 IMG_0585

Skydiving in Utah: Why we chose “Skydive the Wasatch

  • Better price, more fall for the money!
  • The photo/video was half the price of the other place.
  • The online group booking option was a helluva feature as well, allowing everyone to individually be responsible for their trip.
  • The staff/fellows were all a lot of fun! Highly recommended.

To Book –> http://www.skydivethewasatch.com

“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life.”
― John Lennon

“I must be a mermaid, Rango. I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living.”
― Anaïs Nin

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