An online skydiving logbook

February 9, 2008


Some time ago, I bought me a camera helmet. Two weeks ago, I received the wide angle lens I ordered from paragear. And this week, I adapted the helmet for my (old) camera, so now I am ready to do my first ever jump with a camera.

I decide on an easy 2-way to check out the helmet. It is a bit awkward in the plane, I can't find the start button, so I have to take of the helmet again, and so on, but hey, we manage to exit with the camera running. Chantal is floating, I am diving, she makes a good exit, I want to start our routine, but my head is falling aside, this helmet and camera are very present on my head, I feel the weight and the air it takes, I have to pay attention to keep my head up straight, strengthen my neck muscles. But hey, all this takes only a second or so :-). The jump is nice, I don't know how Chantal manages to turn in place, she looks everywhere except at me, but she can do it. So here it is : my first ever video! The camera position and line of sight seem OK, I'm happy!

I immediately follow up with a chute assis. I curse myself all the way down, for not being able to just quietly sitfly. I am definitely better at it than say 10 jumps ago, I feel the air much better, but I still suck big time...

Third is an attempt at a 2-way FF. I funnel the exit, it takes me quiet some time to find out what's up, what's down and what position I'm in, and by the time I get it, Gunther is some 10 metres underneath me. The gap only grows, but at least I can check that I am falling straight (or maybe i just have the same backslide he has ???)...

Then a student from last year comes up to me and asks me if I want to do a currency jump with him. Of course I wanna do that! He has 16 jumps, didn't jump for three months. We brief a level 5, I give him the complete safety briefing again, I give him a refresh on the whole caboodle of malfunctions, and there we go. Please watch my first ever self made student video:

I love his smile a few seconds after exit, when the stress is gone and he remembers the feeling, feels it once again!! Apart from that he was better when we did level 7 than he is now, some 10 jumps later :-).

Last jump of the day (it is still only february, days are short) the weather has completely cleared out. From up there you can see the North Sea, Antwerp and even Zeeland are crystal clear, I can easily make out Middelburg, and although I am not completely sure, I think I can even see Rotterdam. That's about the farthest view I ever had in the 1500 or something jumps I made on this DZ. Wonderful!

The jump is a hybrid. Steven and I are bellyfliers, Nick does a standup, hanging from our chest straps, 6 others are sitflying, trying to dock on us from both sides. Our hanger is swinging all over the place, so it is hard work to stay stable, but we manage not to funnel. Nobody docks, but everybody was there, flying very disciplined, a real nice jump. We had outside video on it, so if it is posted somewhere, I'll link to it here.

So... first ever camera jump, first AFF of the year, first two-way FF attempt: some beers are in order!

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