June 2010

June 2010

June 2010
photo by Phil Peggs
C-36427
At Skydive Moab in Utah, Jonathan Tagle lands his canopy on wingsuiter Jeff Nebelkopf's back as part of the Project XRW jumps held during the Operation Freefall event that raised funds for sexual assault prevention and healing programs.

June 2010 | Volume 51, Number 6 | Issue 608 more »

Stowing the Slider

Q:
What should I do with my slider after I deploy my main canopy? more »

Water Training

You hear it at almost every water-training session: “Why do I have to jump in a pool with this old parachute? I’m never going to land in the water, but if I do, I know how to swim!” And so goes the argument from jumpers who don’t truly understand how serious of a problem a water landing can be. Although water landings are not as common as they once were in the days of less-maneuverable round parachutes, they still happen enough for the training to be important. A proper water-training session should serve as an educational tool for each participant and not just a routine to be drudged though so that the jumper can check off that box to get his license. A USPA Safety & Training Advisor, Instructor or Instructor Examiner should conduct a thorough training session and log it in the jumper’s log book once it is completed. more »

Flying Camera

In the 1950s and ’60s, when skydivers first started using video and still cameras in freefall, they carried large, heavy cameras, separate tape decks and heavy batteries (often mounted on the camera flyers’ chests). All this equipment, along with the bulky parachutes, ensured that most jumpers were happy to be in the video and leave the use of awkward equipment and resulting sore necks to the few skydivers who were both very experienced and really interested in videography and photography. more »

Steering Lines and Toggles

This jumper was unable to clear the toggle from his right steering line when he initially released his brakes. After several attempts at pulling the toggle in different directions and at different angles, the toggle finally slipped free from its cat’s eye (the opening in the steering line). The remainder of the canopy flight was uneventful.

The jumper reported that the cat’s eye in the steering line had always been somewhat snug around the toggle, and as time went on, the fit seemed to get tighter. more »

Building Castles in the Air—An Overview of Canopy Formation

Canopy formation (CF) skydiving, also known as canopy relative work (CRW or “crew”), is a discipline of technical ability that is largely misunderstood. Some perceive the discipline as being extremely dangerous, but the small, dedicated group of jumpers who practice it are rewarded by becoming better, safer canopy pilots. CF jumpers generally channel their interest in one of two directions: recreational CF (which includes parabatics) or competition. CF is also the only remaining discipline for which USPA offers performance-based awards—the 4-Stack, 8-Stack and Canopy Crest Soloist (for docking eighth or later on a formation) Awards. more »

The Secrets of D.B. Cooper, Part Two - Evidence of Absence

A single man, an immense amount of cash, four parachutes and a jump from an airliner. Where does the largest manhunt in the United States lead when authorities don’t have a clue as to who the suspect might be? more »

Profile - Richard “Rickster” Powell | D-11302

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20106Richard “Rickster” Powell is a professional test jumper for Performance Designs (PD). He has jumped all over the world but is now based at Skydive DeLand in Florida. Powell’s canopy piloting skills have been featured in advertisements and movie productions, including Norman Kent’s film “Willing to Fly.” He is also a skilled camera flyer who has flown camera for 4-way formation skydiving (FS) and skysurfing teams in national and international competitions. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Heidi Barker

HSCML20106

by Heidi Barker | USPA #231673 | Boise, Idaho

October 7, 2007, and May 4, 2008: two dates that changed my world and my life forever.

May 4, 2008, was Michelle’s 23rd birthday and our first without her. For weeks in advance, Rich and I discussed and danced around the issue of what to do on that day. We quietly and tearfully fought through the pain of the loss of “Mitchy.” When the day arrived, there was still no plan in place. It seemed strange to even contemplate the notion of some kind of celebration. With no decision made, Rich decided that he would go fishing for a few hours. I stayed at home, wondering what to do. more »

Gearing Up - June 2010

EdScott

As this magazine hits mailboxes, just about a month remains in the effort to collect enough proxies from USPA members to have a quorum of 10 percent at the General Membership Meeting called for Friday, July 16, at 7 p.m. in Nashua, New Hampshire. The purpose of the effort is to change USPA’s by-laws to allow the use of online voting in future elections of the board of directors. The current board believes that the use of an online-voting process could increase member participation in board elections, which in recent years has averaged only about 10 percent of the total membership. more »