Restrictions


USPA membership Required
AADs Not Required
Hook turns Allowed

What it costs


AFF courses available at 195 USD
Tandem jumps from 219 USD
Jump tickets at 25 USDto 13000ft
Video available at 119 USD

Skydive Chicago has been setting the standard for skydiving excellence for 20 years and is just getting started. Located just off Interstate 80 in Ottawa, IL, SDC is a 220 acre private playground for adventure seekers equipped with camping space, cabin rentals, RV hook-ups, Eat Up Deli, free WiFi, swimming, disc golf, volleyball and some of the most world-class skydiving amenities available. We operate full-time Mid-March through early December with a fleet of Grand Caravans and Twin Otters and play host to some of the largest events in the skydiving industry such as SummerFest (July 28-Aug 5) and the 2016 FAI Mondial World Championships of Parachuting. We offer professional services for everyone from the first-time tandem jumper to world champion level teams. Skydive Chicago is also the recent recipient of 15 DZ Awards including: Best Large Dropzone, Best Food, Best Staff & Manifest, Best Load Organizing, Best LO - Rook Nelson, Best Packing Area & Amenities, Best Packers, Locals, & Vibe, Best FS, Freefly, and Novelty Jumps, Best Boogie - SummerFest, and Runner-Up for Best Canopy Activities. Contact us today to have a skydiving experience second to none! Owner

Aircraft


3) Super Otters, 2) Grand Caravan, 1) Skyvan and the token Cesna

Facilities


Gear Rentals
Gear Sales
Rigging
Packing Area
Creeping Area
Team Rooms
Video Rooms
Coaches
Load Org
Accuracy
Restaurant
Shops
Bar
Bunkhouse
RV
Camping
Showers
Pool
Swoop Pond

Where we jump


Skydive Chicago
LAT: 41.3997778
LNG: -88.7939167

Contact Us


3215 E. 1969th Road, Ottawa, Illinois, 61350, United States
815 433 0000
815.433.6806 (FAX)
Website
E-mail

Photos from this dropzone











Videos from this dropzone


SIGN UP OR LOGIN

Create a free account or login to review this dropzone.

Sign Up Login

User Feedback


cassella

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 4


Aircraft:
  • 5
Skydive Chicago is an impressive organization from the facilities to the staff and the aircraft. I stopped there on a weekday after a big weekend and the operation was functioning flawlessly. My observation was that most jumpers were part of established teams so it would behoove visiting jumpers to travel there in a group.

Share this review


Link to review
liloz

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 4
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 4


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 4


Aircraft:
  • 5
This was stop #2. I left CSC thinking I could make a sunset load but was shut down well before sunset. It happens. I was met by a fella that showed me were I could camp. Same gentleman found me in the morning to let me know the hanger was open.
I was a little disappointed to not find any belly flyers and I had to do a solo jump if I wanted to go. Doing a solo is just a little boring, but the view made up for it.
I left after one jump with no one to jump with, but the same young man that had already found me a place to camp brought me into the open hanger worked his tail off to find someone to jump with. As I was packing up he did but I had already made my decision to take off.
Only had three people in the place come over and talk to me which was a little disappointing after my last experience. But overall very nice place I would go back but with a friend.

Share this review


Link to review
DownWindDan

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
AFP was so great I stayed another week and completed my B-license. Great community. Jump all day and get to know the staff at night. Tiki bar and eat up make you never want to or need to leave the DZ.

Share this review


Link to review
SkydiverShawn

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
This is quite simply the best large DZ I have been to.

The Nelsons have provided everything a skydiver could want in one convenient place. RW, Freefly, Wingsuit flying, Big Ways etc...this place has it all!!! The experience of the other experienced jumpers far exceeds that of any other DZ in the Midwest. The staff is professional and courteous.

The DZ has great camping, food/drink at the Tiki Hut, a pond for fishing and swimming. The area has plenty to do off the DZ as well.

Oh, and don't forget Summerfest! Best Boogie ever.

Share this review


Link to review
rigoton95

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
Skydiving paradise! Everything there was make for us the skydivers and is simply the best place in the world to have fun, learn and become a great skydiver in the world! SDC rocks my friends!

Share this review


Link to review
Bealio

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 4


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 4


Aircraft:
  • 5
The facilities are beautiful. This is what you picture a dropzone to look like before you ever went to a drop zone. I was hoping the place would be more busy on weekdays.

Share this review


Link to review
scottayerSDC

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 4


Aircraft:
  • 5
I did my Tandems and AFP at SDC right before they moved to their present location. Everyone knows by now that the place is a resort that would be a great destination even if you weren't a skydiver. A person can go from never having flown in a plane to jumping out of one in a few short hours. Over the years I have taken it so much farther than that. What you have to remember is that fun can be a lot of hard work and if you apply yourself you can go far. I attained my pilots license with the help of SDC. I acquired almost all of my gear and almost all of my jumps in trade for work. I reached the 500 jump mark without actually paying for a jump since jump 20 something because of barter. I became a coach and then a tandem master. Giving someone else that first time experience is amazing. Now at 1500 jumps I can't stress enough that Anyone can get to this level it's not that hard. I have participated in dozens of demo jumps and a lot of them paid me. I have jumped over soldier field and intentionally landed in Lake Michigan. I have jumped from a helicopter and flown with a Jeep Commander to land with it and ride in it to display it to the media and Chrysler execs. and then made ESPN's top ten plays of the day. I received my pyrotechnics license with the help of SDC and all I wanted to do was blow off a couple of professional fireworks. Now I run both fireworks shows each year at SDC. I have participated in the UFO jumps. I have jumped from hot air balloons, bi-planes, many different jump planes and helicopters. I have made tons of friends and amazing memories. I wasn't any different from anyone else coming to SDC for the first time. With a little effort you can transform yourself and choose from many different options available with the help from SDC. Yes anyone can do this. I have read some of the reviews and most people get it. This place is an adult playground. You can go to wallmart the YMCA or even your local church and get some of the same experiences that SDC has...but nothing comapres to the fun that is within reach at SDC...nothing. People that live anywhere close to this place, and dont go to it, just dont understand what they are missing. I have used this place to generate maximum fun for myself and I urge everyone to do the same. Pick whatever level of SDC you want and go for it.

Share this review


Link to review
travrois

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 4
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 4


Location:
  • 4


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 3


Aircraft:
  • 5
Got my A license here and jumped for several summers. First off: I've never seen anyone take safety for granted here especially the employees. The AFP program is great and I'd highly recommend it especially for students who still have doubts well after their first AFP classes. I think there could be more integration to being a non-student jumper once one gets their A license.

Summerfest is a blast and worth the trip.

Share this review


Link to review
waterboy3412

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 4


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
Okay I have made all 25 of my jumps at SDC and I love the place to death. They have a huge plot of land so if you don't make it to the holding area there aren't any power lines to hit, you'll just end up in the corn fields (but they'll send someone to get you). Their Tandems are great and they actually teach you to skydive. They give you an altimeter and actually want to you to pull the pilot chute.

I really want to review the AFP Program, so here it goes:

I recently completed AFP In A Week. It is a great program, it costs around 2600 bucks but if you can afford it you'll be better off. The Transistion course (what you take after your 2 tandems) is okay. As soon as I got there I felt as though I had no idea what the instructor was talking about. They would use terminology and not explain it in detail. However you do get hands on experience in the classroom, which is nice. You will need to take a test, but if you get questions wrong, it doesn't really matter because they go over it as a group and explain the answer. All in all the class is good but if they would explain parts of a parachute in more detail it would be easier for a beginner to understand.

I loved making my AFP jumps at SDC, the instructors are great, funny, knowledgeable, you name it. My problem with the jumps was the videos. They give them to you on tapes. I don't know how many of you have VCR's still but I don't. Plus if you want to post them on facebook or YouTube you will have to pay them 10 dollars to copy your videos to DVD. I heard they are switching over to flash drives but I don't know when thats going to happen. Another problem was that you don't jump with the same instructor everyday. So one instructor might have your videos on a flash drive, or there computer, or on your tape. They always seemed like it was never high on their priority list to get you your videos. Even when you did get them, getting them in order is next to impossible. My last problem with the videos was on my graduation jump (the most memorable and fun jump) my video was taken by a "pro" photographer on an HD camera. After I landed I saw the video on the big screen but when I asked for a copy he was unable to give me a working one. The file was corrupted. So I have no footage from my grad jump, but I'm over it. Also After you make your 20 instructor jumps and you are on your own, be prepared to buy your own goggles and altimeter. They stop providing you with those. So there went another 200 bucks. Anyway on to the positive stuff.

The staff is amazing, although new to the sport, the first night we were there we were invited to a BBQ with the staff and other jumpers. It is an amazing atmosphere. The DZO Rook is sweet, we talked for a good amount of time which I thought was cool. Also the jumpers there are always willing to give advice which is awesome. After I got my license the Manifest made an announcement over the loud speaker and everyone applauded, which made me feel good. I also learned a ton! Like i said before, I didn't know the difference between the risers and toggles but I feel like I have a great base of information to build on.

Final Thoughts:

I couldn't think of anywhere better to skydive, the view is better than you think it would be, the staff is great, the super otter is SWEEEEEEEET, and they have competitive prices. If they could organize their AFP a little more it would be perfect. If you have never been to SDC, I recommend it.

Share this review


Link to review
flyfast1966

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
SDC was awesome. I was there for 3 days, it's like a resort. Everything you need is on site: Gear shop, showers, laundry facilities, rigging, camping, packers, food, Ginormous landing area, Swoopers and low speed jumpers have separate landing area's. The staff and regular jumpers treated me well. Lift capacity , super otter and caravan, that did several back to backs.
I will return !! SDC is worth a road trip!

Share this review


Link to review
Kenny1134

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
If you want to learn skydiving SDC is the place to go! The staff is excellent and really knows how to help you progress. The manifest office works like a machine, and friendly jumpers are always organizing loads to keep everyone jumping. The dz has a ginormous landing area, and the grounds crew keeps everything very clean. Definitely jump it up at SDC!

Share this review


Link to review
2shay

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 4


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
I was hired by Rook the owner last season, and he did not even know me if I may add (thought that was pretty sweet). I went there without knowing anyone and was welcomed with open arms. I worked groundscrew to start. While there I got my coach and tandem rating, and did over 100 tandems in my first month working as an instructor. Everyone there is very knowledgeable and will help absolutely anyone. The otters and the pilots are world class, doing 15 min turns. They also just got a caravan, that should be nice on slower days. Rook and everyone there try to give the biggest and best playground for all skydivers to come and have a blast. I have been to a few dz's and this is a very smooth operating dz with world class planes, facilities, instructors, etc. So thank you to everyone there: Rook Nelson, David Elliot, Steve Verner, Groundscrew, and everybody I missed sorry but I could go on for a long time (and my hands are tired from typing). I really feel at home here and love the fact that Rook and all of team mandrin, and any other of the most knowledgable people in the game are there to answer any question I or anyone else has. You simply will not find that at many dz's if any. These guys are good to go in my book and I will not forget any of them.

Joel Touchatt D-29482

Share this review


Link to review
mamajumps

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 4


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
Skydive Chicago is the premier DZ. Definitely sets a standard that other DZ's should follow. The staff take professionalism and friendliness to an all new level. Everything is top of the line to facilities, planes, equipment, and housing at the DZ. Beautiful DZ, great vibe. Definitely a DZ to visit if you haven't yet. Tons of places to land, very well marked LZ. 2 Thumbs up!!!!!!

Share this review


Link to review
sunsetrose

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 4
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 4


Facilities:
  • 4


Vibe:
  • 2


Aircraft:
  • 5
I should have wrote this review after my first visit there 2 years ago. I found it interesting how different I felt this time around. SDC has some of the greatest facilities that I've seen at a DZ-Tiki Hut, Sky Lounge, swimming pond, canoeing, camping, horseback riding. They even have Genie's cafe on site which is great if you're hungry, but the prices are really expensive!
Despite these wonderful facilities, I found the the vibe amoung people was different.For starters, I stayed in a tent in the camping ground. There were many loud parties on the weekends-loud techno music pumping that lasted until 3 am! If you're into the party scene, then this is great for you, but for someone like me who's not into the college party scene it was downright annoying. I wanted to be able to jump in the am and not feel tired. With the parties, it was nearly impossible and I too found myself going to a hotel. I also noticed how much drug use was going on. At the tiki, you could see people were high on some sort of drug (that definetly didn't look like a pot high). Although I expect to see drug use at a DZ I found this to be out of control and unprofessional. Especially when I saw the DZO and instructor involved in these activities. Would you feel safe jumping tandem with an instructor who you knew was out partyiing and doing drugs the night before??? To add although some people are very friendly and willing to take you in and jump with you, others do not. There are obvious "sky gods" and cliques. It's apparent that if you are not part of this clique, you are no one important to them. Again, I expect to find cliques at DZ's, but this one was very noticeable.
All in all, it is a nice place to jump and visit, just make sure you fit into the scene before heading there.

Share this review


Link to review
MudMan

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
Friendly atmosphere, great aircraft, great facilities, huge landing area. Staff loves what they do and it shows. Place can get crazy busy on weekends, which can be a good or bad thing. Great place to jump, whether you're new or experienced.

Share this review


Link to review
skychild24

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 4


Facilities:
  • 4


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
Without question the best drop zone in the state, maybe the whole country. I have been to others in the area that claim to be but they don't have a clue. If you want to make real skydives that move you to the next level SDC is the place to jump. Big and small R-W and certainly the the best FreeFlyin' going on in Illinios. Lets face it, skydiving costs a lot of money, make it worth while and learn to do it right at SDC, and then get to enjoy the best facilities and people in skydiving during your stay.

Share this review


Link to review
kallend

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 4


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
Not only are the facilities outstanding (all the way from a large padded packing area to the chandeliers), but there is expert organizing available in all disciplines. Plenty for non skydiving family and friends to do too.

Home of several world record bigways (RW and VRW), host to Nationals. Enormous grassy landing area. Fast aircraft. The airport is dedicated to skydiving.

Share this review


Link to review
diverds

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
Skydive Chicago's facilities are the best in the world bar none. I have traveled to almost all the big dropzones in the United States and SDC is truly in a class of it's own.

Driving onto the property feels more like entering a state park than an airport. Activities like swimming, canoing, kayaking, hiking, biking, sand volleyball, and horseback riding will keep the non-skydiving members of your family as entertained as the jumpers.

The laid back friendly vibe on the dropzone is fantastic. My first experience at SDC in 1998 was very welcoming. My wife and I didn't know anyone there, but as soon as we walked in the door we were given the grand tour by the owner and 20 minutes later were on organized multi-point 20-ways that built and invited to dinner that night. Skydive Chicago somehow manages to pull off a small family dropzone feel in a big shiny package. The Nelson family has built a true skydiving paradise.

Go to the rest, then come to the best. Skydive Chicago rocks!

Share this review


Link to review
Martman

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 4
I went to SDC to do my first jump and became addicted instantly. Everyone was friendly, helpful, and made you feel at home. The instuctors are awsome! They are very big on saftey, and make sure you understand eveything. First time jumpers, this is the place to go.

Share this review


Link to review
chiquita24

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 4
Professional:
  • 4


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 3


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 3


Aircraft:
  • 5
Such a wonderful place to be. Everyone is so friendly and helpful here! Ok so maybe I'm biased since I have only been to and worked(Skydive Ixtapa) at a few other dropzones. The facilities at SDC are amazing, cafe, camping, tiki, Sky Lounge, huge packing area, and the shower houses- which were much improved this year! I lived at SDC for awhile and although it was hard for me to adjust living in a trailer at first, now that I'm home in MN I truly miss it! The friends I made there were great! Rook (DZO) is an amazing skydiver and a really nice guy too! Although I am not a full-time skydiver-Ok so really I have 13 tandems which I know is a bit ridiculous, I enjoyed being at SDC.
Saludos a todos mis amigos!!!

Share this review


Link to review
SammyPopov

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
This is the skydiving capital of the world! If you have not been there - you need to go!

Sammy Popov

Share this review


Link to review
Mr17Hz

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
This used to be my home DZ. Now it's my home.

Share this review


Link to review
Broke

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
SDC is a DZ with absolutely everything.
The Staff at SDC are very professional. Their rigging services are top notch. They have wrestling mats for the packing area, so you can pack in comfort. This facility has everything including a weight room for the health conscious skydiver.
The load organizers were super friendly and awesome at organizing some cool dives. even though I am a low timer there were plenty of people to jump with. I learned a lot.
I even got to jump with one of the SDC Furies... mmmm SDC Furies... so hot :)

Share this review


Link to review
kingbunky

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 5


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 5


Aircraft:
  • 5
on my first visit to sdc i was met in the parking lot by the S&TA. she asked where i was from, had i been there before, what discipline i was interested in and what my experience was. i was directd to a load organizer who took me under his wing and took me on several fun jumps, until i chickened out. it's easy to get lost in the crowd at a dz this size, especially when you are travelling alone and don't know anyone. this wasn't the case here, i can't reccomend the place highly enough. i'd be a regular jumper here if the commute wasn't so long.

Share this review


Link to review
paulbo

0 of 0 members found this review helpful 0 / 0 members
  • 5
Professional:
  • 5


Services:
  • 5


Location:
  • 4


Facilities:
  • 5


Vibe:
  • 4


Aircraft:
  • 5
I went to SDC Thanksgiving weekend and loved the experience. It was the first time off my home DZ. I only had 50 some jumps but the locals still welcomed me on their jumps and offered helpful tips. I don't know much about their student operations but I would assume everything is top-quality judging by the rest of the dropzone. The twin otter sure climbs faster than a 182!

Share this review


Link to review