Tales from the Bonfire

Tales from the Bonfire - An All-Time Low

by Doug Moore | C-41678 | San Diego, California

A few months ago, I signed up for a beginner’s angle-flying and tracking camp conducted by a very experienced team. I made certain that no freeflying experience was required, paid my money and spent months waiting excitedly for my first experience getting fast and steep. I thought I was ready. Boy, was I wrong! more »

Tales from the Bonfire - When a Good Jump Goes Bad


by T.J. McGinley | D-19689 | Longmont, Colorado

January 18, 1998, was one of those perfectly beautiful, cool, clear and calm days that are unique to Colorado in winter. I decided to make a simple 4-way jump with three friends—Allen, Mike and Brett—just to warm up. This was my 477th jump. more »

Tales from the Bonfire - A Stellar Landing


by Pierre Tomasini | A-72726 | Tempe, Arizona

It was the summer of 1985 in La Tour de Crieu, France. I had somewhere between 50 and 100 jumps and found myself in a long spot under my Para-Commander. When I was about a half mile away and pretty low, I gave up making it back to the DZ. I had just passed a road and was trying to decide on a landing area upwind when I saw a neat, square field that looked very safe. The landing pattern was pretty simple: Just make a turn at a reasonable height to face the wind for landing. more »

Tales from the Bonfire - To Jump or Not to Jump When Weather Looms


by Kelly Demele | D-30691 | Riverview, Florida

It's been four years since my skydiving accident. August 21, 2010, was a typical hot summer day with accumulating clouds and a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms. Nine of us rode to altitude in a Skyvan, so we couldn’t see anything below us on the way up. When the green light came on, someone yelled, “Go! Go! Go!” and we lifted the door and chunked the 9-way out. Ultimately, this is where we should have checked below us and asked, “Do we jump? Or do we ride the plane down?” But hell, we are skydivers, of course we wanted to jump! more »

Tales from the Bonfire - The Right Canopy


by Dan Brodsky-Chenfeld | D-8424 | Author of “Above All Else” | Temecula, California

I’m a bit embarrassed to tell this story, but here it goes: Once, when I was team training with Arizona Airspeed, we were doing back-to-back-to-back loads, and I grabbed one of my teammates’ rigs thinking it was mine. It fit great, and I didn’t even realize what I had done until I looked up after deploying to find a Performance Designs Velocity 84 over my head instead of my Stiletto 120. I couldn’t believe how tiny it looked. more »

Tales from the Bonfire - A Student Saga

by Bruce Parkes | D-4586
San Antonio, Texas more »

Tales from the Bonfire - Skydiving is Becoming Routine

by Scott Cave | USPA #241311
Fort Langley, British Columbia, Canada more »

Tales from the Bonfire - A Grand Entrance

by Ray Engelberg | C-25638
East Rutherford, New Jersey more »