January 9, 2009

Wingsuits.

Amazing.

35 comments:

chickenlittle said...

Do they trash the skis with each jump? Kinda like Pete Townsend did with guitars?

Bob said...

My gods, that is incredible.

cardeblu said...

"That wasn't flying. That was falling with style!"

mcg said...

I wonder if they even find the skis.

Hector Owen said...

Marvelous. And the first thing to outlawed as soon as any kind of nationalized, socialized, call it what you will, health care plan comes along. So — love it while you've got it, 'cause you won't have it for very long.

Ann Althouse said...

It's a funny distraction -- do they ever get their skis back? -- but it distracted me too.

Tibore said...

I dunno... everything I need to know in life I learned from cartoons, and from Wile E Coyote's example, I think those things are dangerous. We all remember where that got him.

Cabbage said...

If you want a similar experience, but with less out-and-out wow-I-really-might-die-ness, I recommend getting into ultralights.

http://www.eaa.org/ultralights/

As soon as I have some money to blow (and after I buy the motorcycle I've lusted after since I could drive), I'm getting one of these: http://www.usppa.org/

Skeptical said...

Wow. That actually made me filled with longing. I can't believe it's real.

chuckR said...

Stunning, and plays to the dream of really flying. Also stunningly dangerous - the long history of wingsuits is one of many of the pioneers dying while wingflying. The suggestion that you should have 500 regular parachute jumps first should be a tip off. But still...

chuck b. said...

I want to sky-dive. As soon as I can scrape some pennies together.

Did you watch Planet Earth? I love the opening of the caves episode when people parachute into giant caves.

Zach said...

"Squirrel suits" is a much better name.

JohnAnnArbor said...

Hmmm. I wonder if there's some military utility to those suits.

Zach said...

Hmmm. I wonder if there's some military utility to those suits.

Sure there is. But how do you persuade the other side to put them on?

amba said...

They're . . . flying squirrels!!!

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

I wonder if they even find the skis.

I wonder how much is left to find after bouncing off the rock cliffs a few times.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

flying squirrels!!!

Ha. That's the first thing I thought too.

blogging cockroach said...

my friend rose the moth says that s
fine and everything but those guys
should watch out for lightbulbs

EDH said...

Call me stand-offish. But I, for one, would not buy a wingsuit that was deeply discounted!

Steven said...

The suggestion that you should have 500 regular parachute jumps first should be a tip off.

Usefully, that means all the unlucky would-be wingsuiters get weeded out as parachuting fatalities.

Ron said...

yawn.

Synova said...

I like the bit about how they jumped as far from the cliff as possible until that got boring.

Zack wins! Too funny. Sure there is. But how do you persuade the other side to put them on?

Tibore said...

I see waaaaaay too many people thinking this is a good idea. He-llo-ooo! Wile E?? Cliff??? IMPACT??!!

DBrooks17 said...

I agree it is an amazing thing to watch, but I also saw a video of two men jumping from a plane in wingsuits. One was supposed to fly under a bridge, and the other above. One of them hit the bridge. The other one landed, and said the first thing he saw was "part of a leg." Not an activity for the masses.

Chip Ahoy said...

Boris, you fool, Squirrel escape!

You can easily see how insurance companies just don't understand.

Franz Reichelt original flight suit inventor. Died in a failed demonstration of his invention when he stepped off the first platform of the Eiffel tower. Awesome video of his long-to-be-remembered (by other people) leap on that fateful February day in 1912. Category: snuff

It's rumored he told authorities he would be using a mannequin for the demonstration. He lied. (I almost said dummy.) Da Vinci at least had the good sense to use an assistant to test his idea.

I hold a special place in my heart for Gertrude and Francis Rogallo, NASA engineers and co-inventors of the Rogallo Wing also known as Parawing, and flexible wing as an alternative recovery system for Gemini space capsule. The idea parlayed into a foot-launched version by Barry Palmer in the early 1960's which led eventually to the sport of hang gliding. So he also occupies a special place in my heart for my personal pantheon of fly-as-birds-do gods.

As to the skis in the early trials -- scant chance of that. Doesn't everybody have a pair of throw-away Rossignols?

Christy said...

Wow! I, too, am filled with longing. And how fabulous to take off from a ski slope.

It is also exactly like my dreams of flying.

Ralph said...

Looks like you'd be too busy keeping your limbs spread to enjoy the ride, and you're toast if you get tired.

I get sweaty palms and feet just thinking about falling.

Michael H said...

I'm game. Where do I sign up?

Wait. That's how I got into my first marriage. And a demolition derby. And motocross. And motorcycle racing. And car racing. And children.

Some things never change.

What graphics could I get on one of those suits? Could I get one that looks like Rocket J. Squirrel? Hmmmmm....

*scratches head*

*wonders where the highest jump-off point in the midwest is*

*wonders how many vacation days he'll have in 2009*

*tells wife he's 'just reading the newspaper online'*

rhhardin said...

my friend rose the moth says that s
fine and everything but those guys
should watch out for lightbulbs


Moths aren't actually attracted to lightbulbs, but hold them at constant bearing, thinking them to be the moon, in order to fly straight.

If the bearing they hold the light source at is ahead of abeam, then they spiral into the bulb. If it's aft of abeam, they spiral out, and you don't notice them.

rhhardin said...

You do fine in a lower-powered light airplane. After about 500 hours you get the hang of actually noticing and using the dynamic interaction with the air, and the experience lines up with what you thought it would be back when you decided to learn to fly.

Until that point, it's just an unrelated activity that you continued with regardless of its differences.

The advantage of the light airplane route (piper cub, aeronca champ) is that you survive it.

bearbee said...

Franz Reichelt original flight suit inventor. Died in a failed demonstration of his invention when he stepped off the first platform of the Eiffel tower. Awesome video of his long-to-be-remembered (by other people) leap on that fateful February day in 1912. Category: snuff

Amazing piece of old film.

I dunno... everything I need to know in life I learned from cartoons, and from Wile E Coyote's example, I think those things are dangerous. We all remember where that got him.

Ditto Wile E. Coyote's.

If terminal with a short time left, this would be the way to go.

William said...

Devotees of the sport are called paraplegics.

AlphaLiberal said...

I've spent hours of my life now watching wingsuit videos on Youtubes with no regrets. My faves are the Norwegian fjords and the Eiger mountain one.

Trooper York said...

I thought Wingsuits are what Ann Coulter wears when she wants to dress up for the Today Show.

kynefski said...

It looks magnificent until they show a couple of seconds in real time, then it looks terrifying.