Tuesday, May 19, 2015

"Dying to Flying"

A lifelong passion for extreme sports ended in climber Dean Potter's death on Saturday when Potter, 43, and his friend Graham Hunt, 29, died in a BASE jumping accident in Yosemite National Park.

In 2009, Potter jumped off a cliff on Switzerland's Eiger Mountain, flying for nearly three minutes in a wing suit. The jump was the longest BASE jump ever, covering about 9,000 vertical feet and nearly 4 miles.

Last year, Potter returned to Eiger -- this time with his dog, Whisper, outfitted in goggles and strapped to his back. The two tandem jumped off a ledge, and the video can make people queasy to say the least, but Whisper seems to be OK. (Source: LA Times, May 18, 2015)

SAN FRANCISCO — Two wingsuit fliers who leaped to their deaths from a cliff in Yosemite National Park were trying to zoom through a notch in a ridgeline and were airborne for about 15 seconds when they slammed into a rocky outcropping, a friend said Monday.
Dean Potter, 43, and his partner Graham Hunt, 29, were both experienced at flying in wingsuits — the most extreme form of BASE jumping, which is a sport so dangerous that enthusiasts keep lists of the dead.
Dressed like flying squirrels, with flaps between their outstretched arms and legs to keep them aloft, they leaped off Taft Point, 3,500 feet above the valley floor, and would have been traveling at speeds close to 100 mph as they aimed for the narrow gap in the ridge.
BASE jumping — renegade parachuting off buildings, antenna, spans (such as bridges) and Earth (in this case, the cliffs over Yosemite Valley) — is illegal in national parks. Doing it in a wingsuit is even more dangerous, particularly the form Potter practiced, gliding frighteningly close to cliffs and trees before deploying his chute.
“I love the idea that I can change the worst possible thing to the best possible thing: dying to flying,” Potter says in “Fly or Die,” a documentary about his wingsuit jumps that can be seen on National Geographic’s website.
“The wingsuit is basically the flying squirrel suit,” Potter explained in the video. “Everyone kinda fantasizes about it — flying. And it’s an amazing place in history right now, that man actually has the skills to pull it off.” Read more
Source: The Washington Post, May 18, 2015


Celeos said...

He fell playing quidditch ?
Sorry... Cette fois c'est moi qui sors !

another country said...

I had to Google quidditch. I originally thought it was an alternative or erroneous spelling for the Jewish prayer service. How Freudian can one be!

Bon, je sors avec vous... (Enfin, vous m'avez compris...)

Celeos said...

Oui, je vous ai compris, comme disait l'autre. Jamais je n'aurais pensé à l'autre sens...

another country said...

Pas très flatteur pour moi...

Vous ne savez pas ce que vous perdez. :)

Celeos said...

Non, je ne permettrais pas ! Mais ce qui n'est pas encore joué n'est pas encore perdu ! :D