Friday, February 27, 2009

Wingsuit Base Jumping in Norway

wingsuit base jumping from Ali on Vimeo.

This video is best seen in a larger format -- see it in a full-screen version here.

Basically, these guys are jumping off of Norway's steepest and highest fjord cliffs with small, light parachutes. The object though, is to soar for a while using flying squirrel-like wingsuits. They used to do it in the winter, jumping off with skis so they could get a good distance from the cliff walls. Now they do it in the summer, merely jumping off the cliffs.

One jumper, Loic Jean Albert, explains 1:17 into the video:
"At the beginning of wingsuit base jumping, we were trying to get as far from the wall as possible, so basically clearing the whole thing, but now it's getting boring so we play around."
That means flying nearly close enough to cliff jagged faces that they can touch them, diving in and out around rock formations as they free-fall, and then glide, twist and somersault, and dive again. It's breathtaking to watch.

About 3:12 into the video, a Norwegian named Espin Fadnes swoops down over a winding mountain road, buzzing the ground at an alarmingly high speed before soaring off over the next drop-off. It's chilling to see a man fly like that, gracefully, without visible propulsion. It's not like Superman; more like an animal.

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Anonymous Col. Snickering said...

Flying squirrels. Also, nuts.

I would totally pee myself, which would only make the situation worse because I can't imagine that a wet wingsuit has the same aerodynamic properties.

Great video of the can't look/must look, long exhale of swear words variety.

10:49 PM  
Blogger Sylvain said...

As for the credits, this video comes from "Seven sunny days", (Matchstick Productions).

7:32 PM  

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