Surprise birthday present

It’s a funny observation that I made, but to me it seems that there are an awful lot of pilots out there that are afraid of heights and/or would never dream of skydiving. Now I’m not sure if Sally and Julio were aware of that, or if they bought Chuck’s present with only the best intentions. But I think I’ve got a hunch.

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18 comments on “Surprise birthday present
  1. Matte says:

    All our diver drivers where required to either do a couple of solo jumps or at least one tandem if they wanted to fly for our club (most of them did a couple of solo jumps).

    The pilots are an important part of skydiving too!

  2. Jad' says:

    So many of our dropping pilots think skydiver are crazy mad people.
    None want to try, not even a tandem…
    Only 1 of the pilots I know is also a skydiver. It’s always great to fly/jump/be drop with/by him 😀

  3. AFP says:

    Jad: Hopefully he doesn’t do all of those on the same trip. XD

  4. markm says:

    I prefer a pilot who does NOT want to jump out of the airplane until it’s parked on the apron.

  5. Dreniam says:

    I know my instructor amongst many others in my flying club say “you should get your pilot’s license stripped if you want to jump out of a perfectly good plane” I’ll probably skydive one day.

  6. Dreniam says:

    I know my CFI and others in my flying club say “Your pilot license should be stripped if you want to jump out of a perfectly working plane” I’ll probably skydive some day.

  7. warbirdali says:

    I started as a skydiver and after seeing the pilots we had decided ANYBODY can fly! I flew afterwards. That said I really do NOT like being close to the edge on buildings etc. I was just at Lookout Mountain, Chattanooga, last week and I was the one keeping my kids back from the railings! I love the 2000 foot view, that is no problem, but I stay about 10 feet away from the edge since the fence seemed pretty low! I suppose it is all about control… when you have a parachute on you have no problem kneeling by the doorless exit of a 172 but with no rig I would be in a tightly-curled ball under the “parcel shelf” whimpering!

  8. Jackfloyd says:

    I can’t get on a balcony without getting vertigo, but put me at FL110 on a Cessna 172 and I’m in heaven!

  9. mike says:

    I’ve been flying for 20 years now and I only know 2 pilots who are also certified skydivers….

    And pretty much every helicopter pilot I know, including longline pilots (including myself as well) has the infliction of not even being able to look down a balcony…..


  10. JKelley says:

    Let’s see – I had an acro ticket and a skydiving ticket at the same time – what’s so odd about that?

    I still remember flying second seat in a Stearman, and working on advanced maneuvers. Was about to do an English bunt, unbuckled, and told the plane’s owner that he should be ready for this one.

    Nosed over and threw myself right out of the hole, waving as I went. Arced, rolled over, pulled at 5,000#, and coasted down. Landed right on the end of the runway I took off from (we were the only flight out of Aretz that day.)

    That’s what the English bunt was originally developed to do – it predates ejection seats, and you can throw yourself out with surprising force!

    The only thing that was more fun than jumping out of an airplane was fast-roping down from a helicopter…

  11. Matte says:

    Any CFI who thinks there is such a thing as a “perfectly good airplane”…should probably not be a CFI. I have been around aircraft for long enough to know this and I only fly rag-wings, saving up for my PPL and should be able to do it in 2-3 years.

    You utter bas*ard…

  12. MalikTous says:

    I wish people would ditch that old model of parachuting only being an ’emergency’ exit from damaged aircraft and realise you’re launching a personal glider out of that airplane, not ‘escaping’ but flying independent for a few minutes. Jump school first, then a static line or tandem jump, finally a solo.

  13. JKelley says:

    @Matte –
    What? What’d I do?


  14. Awesome says:

    I am going to enter the U.S. Army to start toward my goal of being a helicopter pilot. I have 42 hours of fixed-wing time and almost had my PPL (was within 5 hours or so). That said, I still cannot stand the idea of jumping out of an airplane. I do not like heights, even though I am a skilled climber. I don’t even like hotel balconies. I went on a glider ride last week with my old CFI and he scared the pants off of me by performing an actual stall in the glider. Free-falling for 100 feet is not my idea of fun, let alone for 2000 or so. Hahaha

  15. Fabo says:

    I was thinking about doing a jump. My rationale is, that if I do one day HAVE to, I better know what is happening.

  16. JKelley says:

    @Awesome –
    Go for it, Warrant!

    I don’t have a problem with heights. I’ve done mountaineering (especially fun when I got Wintered Over on Antarctica!) I’ve done rock climbing, fast-roping, HAHO, HALO, monkey-on-a-string, inverted flight in an open cockpit, and nearly anything else. I’ve walked rooflines, I’ve walked high-rise ironwork – no trouble.

    I CAN’T STAND LADDERS. I don’t know why. I never fell off of a ladder (that I know of,) but if it’s more than a 7-foot folding ladder, I can’t bring myself to go up it.

    Can’t stand man lifts, either – and I used to work on them!

    I also had a buddy who kept trying to get me on a roller coaster – he told me I was scared, but I just couldn’t see the point. Stand on 30,000′ of air, what’s a roller coaster got for you?

    We ended up on the big one down at Universal Studios. I slept through most of it. Literally! He had to wake me up at the end.

    “Told you I thought rollercoasters were boring. You’ve just never done a proper jump.”

  17. glider towing pilot says:

    I also got such a birthday present as I promised never to jump out of an well worrking aircraft.
    Then for a pilot its the same as for an warrior, never to worry abot the enemy. So I jumped out from 4000m above msl in LOXN!

  18. Sas7 says:

    Jackfloyd: Same here. Especially those glass barriers over a huge drop… I can’t stand looking over those.

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