Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Future Skid Mark

The guy pictured above is extreme sports enthusiast Jeb Corliss and the outfit he has on is called a wingsuit. It's a specially modified jumpsuit with fabric sewn between the legs and under the arms that shapes the body into an airfoil which can create lift. The suit slows the diver's fall to 1/3 their normal speed, thus tripling their free fall time. Most wingsuit fliers wear a parachute designed specifically for BASE jumping, which opens quickly at low altitudes when their flight is done.

However Jeb is on a quest to be the first wingsuit flier to land while flying solely under the power of his suit, sans parachute. He claims to need only $2 million to build a massive ramp that will allow him to complete his unassisted landing. So if there are any eccentric millionaires reading this, you just found an outlet for your spending; I'm sure Mountain Dew will throw in for a percentage as well.

Despite the sarcastic nature of the title of this post, I really do hope he succeeds at this. It's something that I would definitely like to see happen. But if he does smear himself all over the place, this is going to seem eerily prescient someday. You can watch some video of him flying and BASE jumping from various famous locations courtesy of The New York Times.


Anonymous said...

Base jumping seems WAY cooler than skydiving. I'd never do it, but I do find it interesting that your pops finds skydiving to be so safe and base jumping to be so insane. Especially considering that Lawyer Webb has probably reached a number of jumps that well surpasses the death-by-skydiving odds.

And per my previous comment, it's apparently impossible to use links that send readers to a new page.

JBW said...

I agree that BASE jumping is cooler to watch; I suppose it's the speed with which the structure behind the jumper is racing past. And it seems to me that the main two things that make it more dangerous than regular skydiving are wind blowing you into the structure and having no time to cut away and pull the reserve if things go arry.

And per your previous post, why the hell would you want to send people away from this glorious, web-based wonderland? Keep your window open, click back to the main page, read some old posts. Come on people, I need hits!