Skydiving has been on my bucket list for as long as I’ve had a bucket list. Last weekend I got the opportunity to go skydiving, while live-streaming it online. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, although I’m far from being an adrenaline junkie. Thankfully my roommate shared my enthusiasm and was willing to jump out of a plane with me last weekend.
The waiting period before the jump was the worst part of the entire experience. We went on a Sunday afternoon, when the weather was perfect and the sky was completely clear. We were delayed for a couple of hours, and when it was finally our turn we had to wait another 30 minutes. The nerves started to kick in as soon as we strapped on our harnesses.
My instructor had jumped anywhere form 800-1000 times –he couldn’t remember, and my roommate’s instructor had been on twice as many jumps. We were in good hands, although that didn’t settle the nerves.
Finally, we began the walk to the plane, taking pictures along the way. As the first jumper, I was the last one on the plane, and it was a tight fit. It was about a 20-minute flight to the jump site. Surprisingly, the takeoff made me calmer, and we had beautiful views of the mountains on the way up.
At 5,000 feet, my instructor nudged me and told me to sit on his lap. He strapped our harnesses together, and then my heart started pounding. He opened the door, the plane still ascending, and the cold air started blowing in. I took a deep breath and looked out the window at the drop I was about to make. My instructor stuck his foot out — my cue to stand up and stick booth of my feet out onto the small step. I felt my instructor come out of the plane behind me, and I rested my head back on his right shoulder. Before I knew it, we were flying.
My back was arched and the wind was blowing in my face, making my eyes tear up. I felt my instructor tap me on the shoulder, telling me that I could let go of the harness. I let my arms go, and it had to be only about a minute or so before the parachute was deployed, but that minute was one-of-a-kind. Falling from that height doesn’t feel like going on a rollercoaster — your stomach doesn’t drop, and you feel weightless.
The whole experience was very surreal. Not a feeling in the world can describe free-falling from that high up. Time stood still until the parachute opened and we stopped falling. If you’re up for skydiving, Boulder is the best place to do it. The view of the Flatirons was spectacular, and since it had just snowed they were slightly frosted.
After taking in the spectacular views, and steering the parachute a bit, it was time to land. I held my legs up as high as they could go, and we landed in a field. The jump was over in 5 minutes, but the feeling afterwards, the adrenaline rush mixed with all of the endorphins that were released, lasted for the rest of the day. My roommate drifted down out of the sky behind me and had a huge smile on her face.
If you’re wanting an adrenaline rush, skydiving is for you. If you just want a once-in-a-lifetime experience while you’re in college, I highly recommend jumping out of a plane.
(Courtesy of Stephen Kaisca, Rob Denton and Independent Skydiving)
Contact CU Independent Breaking News Editor Bethany Morris at Bethany.firstname.lastname@example.org.