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December 15, 2004 2:13 PM   Subscribe

Men falling from the sky [14MB Quicktime] (via newstoday)
posted by gwint (70 comments total)

 
that was pretty awesome
posted by buriednexttoyou at 2:18 PM on December 15, 2004


Goodness! That looks dangerous. But I'm sure they know what they're doing and it's really no more risky than driving to the supermarket.
posted by Turtles all the way down at 2:23 PM on December 15, 2004


TO THE EXTREME!!!!!
posted by Robot Johnny at 2:25 PM on December 15, 2004


.
posted by crusiera at 2:27 PM on December 15, 2004


its no more dangerious than driving...EXTREME DRIVING!
posted by EvilKenji at 2:27 PM on December 15, 2004


100% PURE ADRENALINE!!!
posted by fungible at 2:33 PM on December 15, 2004


I was up all night doing that in Las Venturas. It's really not all that thrilling.
posted by eyeballkid at 2:37 PM on December 15, 2004


"It's raining men, hallelujah"
posted by Bugbread at 2:46 PM on December 15, 2004


what i really meant to say was, its no more dangerous than driving to the super market...X-TREAM DRIVING...to the X-TREAM SUPER MARKET
posted by EvilKenji at 2:56 PM on December 15, 2004


Holy. Cow.

This makes me want to vomit, but in a good way.
posted by darkstar at 2:57 PM on December 15, 2004


It scares me just to watch this. Jesus. Beautiful, though.

This is apparently the trailer for a movie, more info here.

Norway has more basejumpers per capita than any other country in the world, and Norwegian sites such as 'Trollveggen' (the Troll Wall) or Kjerang are visited by adrenaline junkies from all over the world.

This is the first extreme sport video on BASE. It has been assembled by Norwegian basejumpers themselves over a period of two years. The video contains sequences of them ripping off the tallest hotel in Oslo through a hotel room window, antennas, spans, mountain massives in Romsdalen, Lysefjorden, Voss and practically anything else that stretches high enough to jump from. The video also features unique footage from Asia and Europe - the first basejump from a building in China and the first tandem-jump off a mountain.

The music track is by the Norwegian band 'Yelp' who are as passionate about their music as these basejumpers are about their sport.

posted by Turtle at 2:58 PM on December 15, 2004


If those guys were really extreme, they'd file their teeth into fangs and parachute nude while simultaneously wrestling rabid baboons and blowing fire out of their tracheostomies. Then maybe we could call them extreme.
posted by fandango_matt at 3:09 PM on December 15, 2004


My boss is a BASE jumper. There are videos like this playing on his desktop every time I walk into his office. Also, like half his friends have died in the last year.

I got a complimentary skydive for my last bonus. And of course then there's the random sketchy people showing up looking for him...
posted by hob at 3:11 PM on December 15, 2004


Surfers have their movies too. Why shouldn't the BASE jumpers have one too?
posted by kadmilos at 3:13 PM on December 15, 2004


Anybody besides me wonder who popularized the term "EXTREME" (or "X-TREME")? Was it an ad exec, an "EXTREME sports" enthusiast, or did it somehow rise up out of populace only to be co-opted by corporations? Also, did anyone really ever buy into the whole EXTREME thing?
posted by cmaxmagee at 3:16 PM on December 15, 2004


I'm pretty sure the dude doing the zillion backflips died last year on a jump. I forget his name, but caught some short film about him (he was the michael jordan of base jumping until he died last summer, when he smashed into a bridge at full descent speed, which actually severed some limbs on impact).
posted by mathowie at 3:23 PM on December 15, 2004


I find it frustrating that the videos always cut away as some of these guys just seem to crash into the mountainside.
posted by semmi at 3:26 PM on December 15, 2004


Music was good.
posted by Mach3avelli at 3:34 PM on December 15, 2004


Matthowie -- I think the guy you are talking about is Dwain Weston. Saw a spot featuring a bit of him just yesterday on the Outdoor Life Network. He was using a wingsuit he apparently wasn't super-familiar with to cruise just over the top of the bridge (replete with spectators) and nicked the railing, turning him into flying pulp. Gnarly, dude! Great footage, brah!

Wannabe BASE jumpers take note: spot #85 is still open on the BASE Jumpers Fatality List. Old Dwain doesn't get a number as non-BASE fatalities only merit an honorable mention.

Be sure not to wear your helmet -- it helps get you a low-low number!
posted by Ogre Lawless at 3:37 PM on December 15, 2004


My feet are sweating after watching that.

Anyone recognize the music? Sounds familiar, but I can't place it. Sort of a Screamo Pearl Jam.
posted by freshgroundpepper at 3:42 PM on December 15, 2004


Mathowie, this link might provide some clues as to the identity of the backflipping BASE jumper you mentioned: World BASE Fatality List
posted by TheNakedPixel at 3:43 PM on December 15, 2004


Woah, cool. It's astounding how much hangtime they get, and how much it looks kind of like flying as they slightly glide away from the cliff face.

Though I wonder about the cutaways on some of the jumps, especially that guy doing backflips until the very end.

My girlfriend's boss has pics of himself doing a building jump in San Diego up in his office. But then again, he has pics of himself doing what is apparently a HALO jump with a claymore mine duct-taped to his helmet with the infamous words "This side towards enemy" clearly legible. Yeah, he's ex Special Forces, and he's at least marginally crazy. But who isn't?
posted by loquacious at 3:44 PM on December 15, 2004


Woops, my apologies. So much for actually previewing.
posted by TheNakedPixel at 3:45 PM on December 15, 2004


Doh, and I missed the reference above posted by Turtle about it being by a Norwegian band 'Yelp'. Thanks.
posted by freshgroundpepper at 3:50 PM on December 15, 2004


I get tingly just watching it. That would be so fun to do. Too bad I'm such a wimp.
posted by BradNelson at 3:52 PM on December 15, 2004


Dwain Weston

That was the guy. They showed the video of his death, cut to black on impact, but played the audio of a "thunk" against the railing, which I found even more grotesk than simply watching a guy die.
posted by mathowie at 3:52 PM on December 15, 2004


My feet are sweating after watching that.

Heh. I'm an experienced skydiver and my hands & feet are sweating too. I always get that way watching friends' BASE videos. Freefall is cool, but man, these guys have to have perfect body position when they deploy, or they can induce an off-heading opening and find themselves hurled into the face of their cliff, building, or whatever. I prefer open airspace, myself.

Of course, in this video, they're jumping some stuff so freaking high that they can track away and have plenty of open air. Hmm...
posted by Tubes at 3:52 PM on December 15, 2004


Having bungi-jumped 111 meters off Victoria Falls I can safely say that I will never, ever base jump.

The bungi-jump was way cool, though. You don't feel like you're falling. You feel like you're floating.
posted by alms at 3:53 PM on December 15, 2004


And then there was the tragic death of Frank Gambalie who successfully BASE jumped off El Cap in Yosemite Valley only to be confronted by park police who chased him into the Merced river where he drowned.
posted by alpinist at 4:01 PM on December 15, 2004


More videos here. (.wmv files)
posted by fandango_matt at 4:24 PM on December 15, 2004


Girlfriends die. Gives a whole new perspective on the phrase, "throwing your life away."
posted by Ironwolf at 4:28 PM on December 15, 2004


thanks, i needed that. after my first skydive , i think about this sort of thing all the time. nothing is quite as wonderful as falling through the air.
posted by moonbird at 4:31 PM on December 15, 2004


Boss says the backflipping guy was actually Jim Jennings, not Dwain Weston. Just, you know, FYI.
posted by hob at 4:31 PM on December 15, 2004


Felix Baumgartner's BASE jump into a Croatian cave.

Baumgartner is the person who crossed the English Channel between Dover and Calais last July in freefall.
posted by ericb at 4:34 PM on December 15, 2004


This is less about man's desire to fly as his desire to drop like a rock. Call me a party pooper, but as opposed to skydiving, this appears to be little more than glorified Russian Roulette with a parachute strapped to your back (if you get the chance to deploy it). As long as they only end up putting themselves in harm's way however, let 'em at it.
posted by spock at 4:58 PM on December 15, 2004


Perhaps as counterpoint we should have some video of the poor bah-stahd who has to pick up the pieces.
posted by spock at 5:01 PM on December 15, 2004


only to be confronted by park police who chased him into the Merced river where he drowned.

You can't be serious, right? That SUCKS.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:06 PM on December 15, 2004


The mountain footage is terrific. Dig the music too.
posted by a3matrix at 5:08 PM on December 15, 2004


From TFA
"At the time of his death, Gambalie stood at the pinnacle of his sport, having made more than 600 jumps from structures all over the world, including New York's Chrysler Building."
And how does one BASE jump off a building with a pyramid-shaped top?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:08 PM on December 15, 2004


Having finally downloaded the video and watched it, I think I can finally bring myself to blink.

The really incredible thing is their ability to control their trajectory during descent. There are so many shots of guys who are doing stupid shit mid-air, then realize that, "Hey, that mountain side's approaching, I better get out of the way," and straighten out. HO. LEE. SHIT.

And my comment about the Chrystler Building has now been answered, after seeing that guy jump out of what looked like a 20 story building, literally throwing his parachute in front of him as he jumped. WHA. THA. FUC?
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:21 PM on December 15, 2004


Amazing video. I lose all sense of perspective when the ground just keeps rushing ahead without seeming to get any closer. I keep thinking they're right on top of it, about to smash into it. Same goes for the cliff face. It's incredible how far out from the cliff face some of them are able to drift, and equally disturbing how quickly they could drift right back into it, if they weren't able to control their descent.

As morbid as it is, when I have thoughts of people jumping to their deaths, I try to imagine what things looked like from their perspective, how the wind felt, which way they twisted and turned, how fast it really seemed.

The base jumping off the skyscraper in the video is more than mildly unnerving, though.
posted by odinsdream at 5:36 PM on December 15, 2004


There's another great video floating around called "Jeb Corliss' A Year in the Life". The end has him jumping out of the Palace Hotel in NYC at night and landing in the middle of the street. It's like something out of a movie.

(And I now see that it's on fandango_matt's link.)
posted by smackfu at 5:37 PM on December 15, 2004


Wow, this is just nuts...more power to them what can do it...but sheesh, it scares me just to see the video.
posted by dejah420 at 5:41 PM on December 15, 2004


What would their poor mothers think?
posted by pmbuko at 5:45 PM on December 15, 2004


Upon watching that video, my testicles retracted into my body. Holy crap, that shit is unnerving.
posted by Dr. Wu at 6:06 PM on December 15, 2004


Wow. This trailer, and the documentary itself, was put together by my previous employer, back when I worked there 5-6 years ago. This brings back memories. (Incidentally, one of the guys in the video had a fatal jump a short time after the release. I believe he was Norwegian, however.)
posted by gentle at 6:07 PM on December 15, 2004


The best part of the fatality list site:

"- Please "refresh" your browser NOW to make sure you are reading the most current version of this list. "

Note to self: Don't jump off buildings.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 6:56 PM on December 15, 2004


My mood has been kind of black lately, so my first thought was that this would be a really good way to build up your courage for a jump-based suicide. Break down and fool whatever resistance mechanism in the body says "Christ don't do THAT" by making it into something relatively safe. Then do it without the shute.

I think I need to get some sleep.
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 7:54 PM on December 15, 2004


I believe he was Norwegian, however.

That makes it all right, then!


How about the crazy bugger at the end who BASE jumps a 20ft rise? Not even enough time to pull the chute: he has to throw open as he's jumping!
posted by five fresh fish at 7:58 PM on December 15, 2004


Holy crap. Did anyone notice that on the Felix Baumgartner cave jump that those are actually torches in the landing zone and that they nearly set his canopy on fire?

He's too busy going "yahoooo@!" to notice while someone runs over to try and put it out or pull it out of the flames. It looks a lot like it's actually starting to catch fire before they cut away on an edit.
posted by loquacious at 8:00 PM on December 15, 2004


I should have put on an adult diaper before watching that.
posted by jefbla at 8:08 PM on December 15, 2004


this would be a really good way to build up your courage for a jump-based suicide

Been done already. Kataya Nemtsova, April, 2002
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:35 PM on December 15, 2004


The really incredible thing is their ability to control their trajectory during descent.

You should stop by your local DZ and ask someone to show you some freefall formation videos. Skydiving with other people is all about controlling your body and moving it where it needs to be. Looks easy, is hard as hell at first, then a blast when it actually becomes easy. People need to master that body control, among other things, before even thinking about BASE jumping.
posted by Tubes at 8:56 PM on December 15, 2004


Wow! Where do I sign up?! The guy that rode the sled off the edge must have been living out a childhood dream. That would be so cool!
posted by shoepal at 9:41 PM on December 15, 2004


That sled jump reminds me of a cross-country ski trek in Norway when I was still quite inexperienced. I was parallel to the main tracks but slightly downhill and entered an area where the gradient steepened a bit. Gravity pulled me a bit more downhill and I noticed that I couldn't see the bottom of the slope. Fifty meters onward or so, I realized there was no bottom. I was skiing parallel to the cliff face.

As I was inexperienced, that realization brought visions of losing control and turning downhill or of falling and rolling downhill. Splash -- there goes the family's ride home!

I barely managed a controlled stop and then very shakily sidestepped my way uphill, having all the confidence of a 10-yr-old behind the wheel of a runaway 18-wheeler.

I must have gotten about 100 meters upslope from the edge before I dared to exhale and to check my sphincter's fitness. The ski track I thought I'd been parallelling had made a left turn about 1/2 kilometer earlier and it took me quite a while to scramble back to it.

That also taught me the folly of skiing 'near' the tracks and not having a map. Ever since then, cross-country skiing has not been a pleasure for me. Plus, my daughter, in her wisdom, asked me why I enjoyed struggling to climb uphill when chair lifts can get you as high as you want to go. Chalk one up for her!

Norwegian ski areas don't rope off out-of-bounds areas. That shot of the sled going over the cliff brought back to me the knowledge that every year about a half-dozen skiers will do the same thing, without the benefit of a chute.

The guy that rode the sled off the edge must have been living out a childhood dream. That would be so cool

It's also the stuff adult nightmares can be made of.
posted by PlanoTX at 10:36 PM on December 15, 2004


Saw a spot featuring a bit of him ...

Which bit, exactly?

C'mon, someone had to say it ...
posted by bwg at 5:04 AM on December 16, 2004


!
posted by adampsyche at 5:10 AM on December 16, 2004


I am so totally never doing that. Totally.
posted by MrMoonPie at 6:54 AM on December 16, 2004


I was only kidding.

What Dr. Wu said.
posted by bwg at 7:37 AM on December 16, 2004


They showed the video of his death, cut to black on impact, but played the audio of a "thunk" against the railing.

I saw a report once where they showed a video of a guy jumping near a bridge but always cut away before the impact. They showed the video a half-dozen times. Then, while the credits were rolling, they played the video all the way to impact. Whoops. Don't know if it was the same guy, though.
posted by Cyrano at 7:40 AM on December 16, 2004


The guy featured in the "A Year in the Life" video is named Jeb Corliss. Apparently he's going to attempt a wing-suit free-fall without the aid of a parachute. Choice quote: "If Jeb lands the wing-suit without a parachute and survives—he is going to be my hero."

Sheeeit.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 7:55 AM on December 16, 2004


WOW.

And just to let you know, there's a lot of cool videos in gwint's main link.
posted by daHIFI at 12:55 PM on December 16, 2004


If those guys were really extreme, they'd file their teeth into fangs and parachute nude
posted by homunculus at 2:52 PM on December 16, 2004


You just know they can't wait to jump off the Viaduc de Millau.
posted by homunculus at 3:13 PM on December 16, 2004


And just to let you know, there's a lot of cool videos in gwint's main link.

Such as this one. Those wing suits are incredible. I can almost see how you could land in one.
(If there was a strong headwind, you did everything perfectly, a miracle occurred, etc.)
posted by bitmage at 6:56 PM on December 16, 2004


Night Jump.
posted by bwg at 5:28 AM on December 20, 2004


My girlfriend's boss...has pics of himself doing what is apparently a HALO jump with a claymore mine duct-taped to his helmet with the infamous words "This side towards enemy" clearly legible.

loquacious - I think that the image you are referring to is a member of the Canadian Special Forces (JTF) from around about the mid-80's - it's quite a well known picture in special forces circles - the dude is wearing a white helmet and giving the "okay" sign. Can't access google image search from work but it's out there, I'll have a look tonight.

I think your g/f's boss might be talking himself up a bit.
posted by longbaugh at 7:57 AM on December 20, 2004


This is what happens when a base jump goes wrong*.

*Warning: Disturbing video.
posted by bwg at 1:50 AM on January 5, 2005


Great 404 actually, shame I don't get to see the video. :)

(cmaxmagee, ad execs may not have invented X-treme, but they ran with it.)
posted by dabitch at 4:31 AM on January 5, 2005


dabitch, it's not a "404" any longer. The video takes quite a while to load. Yes, it is disturbing.
posted by PlanoTX at 9:07 PM on January 10, 2005


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