Jul 25th, 2008, 12:42 PM
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I just want to know if there are any Fodorites who have tackled SKYDIVING.

I saw where they offer such an opportunity in Charleston, where we are thinking of going in November.

If you've done it, what did you think? Give me some kind of idea what it's like.

I have ridden over 100 roller-costers, one going as fast as 120 MPH and a 400-foot drop. I'm sure that pails in comparison to SKYDIVING, though.

Let me know what you thought and think.

magnumholmes is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 03:04 PM
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We gave our daughter a tandem skydive as her high school graduation present last year. She had the biggest grin on her face when she landed! She had a video made of the entire jump (which I recommend) so we all got to re-live it with her. If you enjoy roller coasters (as does my daughter) you should definitely go for a tandem skydive!
longhorn55 is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 03:32 PM
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I went tandem skydiving last year as a fundraising event and it was an amazing experience. I have a fear of edges/falling, and this was a sort of personal challenge.

I don't really know how to describe the feeling of the freefall...falling so fast but at the same time feeling like you're floating. I didn't get the same feeling as when on a rollercoaster. The freefall was (I think) about 90 seconds and then we pulled the cord and floated around for a couple of minutes - I think I laughed the whole time, I was so amazed and in awe at the sensation of floating and flying. It was very quiet and peaceful (except for the sound of my gleeful laughter!).

The scariest part for me, honestly, was the plane ride up - I guess I had been so in denial about what I was going to do and then as I sat on the plane I realized I was about to jump out of it! The actual jump out of the plane part happened so fast that I didn't have time to be afraid.

I would do it again

Hope that helps
away is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 03:46 PM
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I did a tandem skydive while on vacation in New Zealand several years ago. It was something I'd always wanted to do and I loved it.

The worst part was when they opened the airplane door and I was perched right on the edge of the plane, standing on a rail outside the door. I distinctly remember thinking to myself "What the H*LL are you doing?!?" - but once I was out and free falling it was great.

It did feel in a way like I was floating. The amount of adrenaline going through me once I got to the ground was amazing - I was laughing and felt rather giddy.

I would definitely do it again.
chepar is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 03:49 PM
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This sounds like something I need to do.

If we decide to go to Myrtle Beach in November, I am going to look into it.

Was there any flipping involved? If there is, it might make my wife a little more cautious. If you can do it without flipping, that would probably be better.

There are the factors of price and getting there. But it will definitely get a look-see.

Any other experiences?

magnumholmes is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 03:58 PM
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There's no flipping (at least in my experience) - you basically go from a squatting/standing position in the door of the plane and fall forward out of the plane until you're horizontal to the earth, then you "fall" for a while. When the cord is pulled there is a huge jerk and you go from being flat on your stomach to being vertical to the ground (basically in a sitting up position), but they prepared us for that beforehand.

I also got photos and a video - if not included, they are very much worth the cost IMO.
away is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 04:00 PM
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My son done it. He said, he was not scared after he left the plane.
FainaAgain is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 04:56 PM
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You are all nuts! No way I am jumping out of a plane.
gail is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 05:46 PM
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Me me me! I loved it- and you will not get me on a roller coaster.

away summed it up well, although the way I thought of it was that I was so far off the ground, I wasn't so much falling as just going really fast, then floating once the canopy opened.

The flight up was the worst of my life though- I wanted out of that plane!

But my suggestion would be to do it at home, or close to home- we had bad weather on 4 different days (weekends) so we took the class one Saturday morning, then got to go after work one night like a month later. It was the last time I was going to try- I figured I was tempting fate enough. Also, you'll have a better idea of the reputation of the company- you are putting your life in their hands, after all.
cocontom is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 07:01 PM
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I've been rappeling, ziplining, fished beside bears, rode many rides at amusement parks, rafted the grand canyon. NO WAY am I skyDIEing. But, I certainly can see how it would be fun.
spirobulldog is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 07:02 PM
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my daughter did go bungee jumping, but that is out for me also.
spirobulldog is offline  
Jul 25th, 2008, 07:27 PM
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My sister's kids gave her a tandem jump for her 50th birthday. One daughter who had jumped before went along. Sis was so scared she wore Depends under her jumpsuit.

Daughter went first and reached the ground in time to here an onlooker say, "Oh, there's a cutaway." Yes, my sister reported that they freefell for a while and then her instructor pulled the cord. There was a jerk but their rate of descent didn't slow much. She sensed the instructor messing with something, then there was another jerk and they were floating. Since she really had no idea that the first chute didn't work properly, she enjoyed the descent without wetting her pants.

Until they landed. You are instructed to land on your bottom with your legs to the front. It had rained earlier so she was dragged through the wet grass and the Depends soaked up an incredible amount of water.
ellenem is offline  
Jul 26th, 2008, 02:45 PM
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One poster suggested we do it close to home. We live in podunk, USA, in west-central Missouri. Don't even know if there is such a place within driving distance of here.

Anyway, great stories. They make me want to go that much more.

Thanks again for the insight.
magnumholmes is offline  
Jul 26th, 2008, 08:14 PM
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Like you, I have ridden many roller coasters. I have been skydiving (tandem) as well. The experience of skydiving, for me anyway, was not the same knot-in-your-stomach kind of excitement that you get from good coasters like Top Thrill Dragster. The skydiving experience was actually kind of peaceful and not really scary at all. I do think that skydiving is definitely something that is worth doing at least once. If your planning to travel to skydive I would like to recommend Skydive Space Center in Titusville, Fl.
kudo96 is offline  
Jul 28th, 2008, 10:14 AM
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I'm going to show my age here, but heck the gray hair already does that.

I tried skydiving a long, long time ago, before they offered tandem jumps (at least at the small airfield I went to). So I did a static line jump. The plus is you don't have to remember to pull a ripcord--the staitic line does that for you automatically. The scary part is that you're absolutely alone when you step out onto the wheel housing and then jump.

Now I notice that in addition to tandem jumps, you can go it alone, but jumping along with you is an instructor with a radio connection to you. That sounds like the best of all worlds to me.

Here's a link for an outfit that operates in Charleston SC:

I loved the experience. But I was very cognizant that my life was hanging by a few fiber threads. I am very glad I did it, but I have never had a desire to repeat the experience.
beach_dweller is offline  
Jul 28th, 2008, 10:28 AM
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I Used to skydive.
First time, of course, was tandem and I remember approaching the plane door thinking "I'm crazy". Once out the plane it was terrific! I even forgot about the parashoot 'til it opened and then it startled me.
I would skydive again but have not interest in bungee jumping - one has no control there.
I also wouldn't care for base jumping (jumping off a balloon, or stationary surface) because I don't like the rollercoaster/belly-flopping feel you'd get.
zelphiacat is offline  
Jul 28th, 2008, 11:50 AM
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Bungee jumping was one of the most horrible experiences of my life!

Magnum- Podunk is more likely to have somewhere to jump! There's more room for airports and just generally less to get tangled in.

Here's a site to help find somewhere to jump:

Do your homework- find out how common cutaways are, find out how many deaths and the reasons. The place I went had four, and only one was a student- her gum (that she spit out and then replaced) got blown down her windpipe.
cocontom is offline  
Jul 28th, 2008, 01:11 PM
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Have been doing it for years.....,

but the first static line jump was the most exciting

I do free fall now and it's always a thrill and fun but nothing like that first one.

Go for it!!!
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Jul 28th, 2008, 01:26 PM
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I've done the static line. Exhilarating. Not again, though.

There are risks involved, as reflected in the interest life insurance companies show in their applications. There was a column in today's Atlanta Journal ( concerning a Ga. Tech student who died this weekend when his primary chute failed to open. Believe it was his 300th or so jump.
hmmm is offline  
Jul 29th, 2008, 11:55 AM
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A MUST in life, but do a tandem jump. Queenstown, NZ is a gorgeous place to jump. My husband, me & my twin 14 yr olds all did it (must be 18 in US). My son had an intense fear of heights (we bribed him to do it), and he had the biggest grin on his face when he landed...wanted to do it again! Something I've ALWAYS wanted to do & had absolutely not a second of anxiety or fear. ENJOY! (All of my pilot friends say they would NEVER jump out of a plane, though!)
win2ski is offline  

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