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The World Famous Miles D

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I wonder how Red Bull would feel if this guy took some wuffo on a BASE jump that resulted in his or her highly publicized death or paralysis. -Chris



In the words of a Red Bull Marketing guy I overheard "any publicity is good publicity." I'm sure they'd love the publicity.
-- Tom Aiello

Tom@SnakeRiverBASE.com
SnakeRiverBASE.com

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I'm in absolute agreement with Avery.

Miles (and Shane, and to a lesser extent several other people in their crew, like JT) is a great guy. He's very friendly, super helpful, outgoing, positive and nice. I can think of few people I'd rather hang out with.

But Miles (and the rest, as above) is also a horribly unethical and not terribly skilled BASE jumper. His antics at our legal span are way over the line, and his idea of BASE skill appears to be "how bad can I flail and live?" A "rad" jump is not the same thing as a skillful jump. If there hadn't been trees to break the fall at Bridge Day, I'm pretty sure that his daughter would never really have known her father--and that would be a true tragedy.

In short: Great people, horrible ethics.
-- Tom Aiello

Tom@SnakeRiverBASE.com
SnakeRiverBASE.com

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Miles is a great guy. He is a good friend. He cares about people and their safety. He's just goofy. That ad just shows his personality. A little over the edge for some people.



I agree.

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I just think it's sick to hear people that don't even know him talk about the Darwin and the Gene Pool. What the hell is that all about?



Some of those people _do_ know and like him. Perhaps they worry about him.

Regardless, being a super nice guy is not a free pass on ethics or safety.
-- Tom Aiello

Tom@SnakeRiverBASE.com
SnakeRiverBASE.com

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I'm sure that there are better ways to express your disapproval of a new business venture...



This is a bit more than a new business venture. It's more like a fundamental paradigm shift in BASE instruction. That will lead to shifts in the nature, safety, and perception of the sport.

Little stone, perhaps. But very big ripples. I think we all have an interest in the sport, and a right to comment on the direction that various of us take it.
-- Tom Aiello

Tom@SnakeRiverBASE.com
SnakeRiverBASE.com

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I don't have much in the way of BASE experience with 3 skydives and 5 base jumps



I don't even know where to begin with this. I presume those 5 were off TF?

With all of 3 skydives do you think you're prepared to effectively track away if I hucked you off of one of our 2000-footers? Do you have the body awareness to get yourself turned around and stable quickly if you flailed an exit?

We have a person takes students out to one tower. They only jump that tower. And they only jump it terminal.

In my opinion, he's not teaching these people how to BASE jump. He's teaching how to BASE jump from one particular tower. Big difference.

- Z
"Always be yourself... unless you suck." - Joss Whedon

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just curious, but if some other really nice guy with good experience in BASE, that you did not really know or even did not know at all, advertised this sort of course allowing people with zero skydives to get into BASE, what would your gut reaction be?



Same as it is here: "ouch, bad idea".
-- Tom Aiello

Tom@SnakeRiverBASE.com
SnakeRiverBASE.com

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...
In the meantime, why don't y'all check out some video of Miles and Shane wowing all the gawkers at BD 2004! Sheeesh! what will those crazy kids come up with next? <----click here for video!

pope



I'm having a hard time distinguishing the Red Bullshit team in question here... the link goes to several poor jumps.

was it the first BD clip where the dude has the wrong gear set up for BASE jumps and has a pc hesi and then a long snivel?

Or were they the ones in the cool bunny/pig costumes who had the sweet stand up flailing exit and canopy strike?

Or how about the rockin' 2 way linked exit that ended up with the dude pitching on his back?

Maybe they were the guys that ended up eating topskin because of a messed up exit and total unawareness of their surroundings.

Oh wait a minute... I think I found them trying to kill themselves with a long rope:)
Honestly, anyone of those BD videos could have been the clowns at red bullshit. They all look like first jump students trying to get the approval of the world on live (delay) TV.

:D:D
I guess MD really is 'world famous' especially if your living in his little world!

570

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I don't have much in the way of BASE experience with 3 skydives and 5 base jumps



I don't even know where to begin with this. I presume those 5 were off TF?

With all of 3 skydives do you think you're prepared to effectively track away if I hucked you off of one of our 2000-footers? Do you have the body awareness to get yourself turned around and stable quickly if you flailed an exit?

End Quote from Zennie--------------------------------

Of course not. I may not be the sharpest french fry in the happy meal, but I'm not a complete idiot.

The way I see it, jumping of the bridge (yes, TF) gave me a TASTE of what BASE is all about... and an inkling of what more I need to learn in order to be able to jump the aforementioned 2000 footers.

From my somewhat outsider perspective on BASE, I believe that a wealth of ONGOING skydiving time is essential for gaining any margin of safety with more advanced jumps. Watching video's showing jumpers with excellent vs. average tracking skills near cliffs has illustrated this.

I would never had any involvement with BASE at all had I pursued 200 skydives before ever trying a base jump.

Reason being: I didn't enjoy the skydiving scene. Too mechanized / contrived, to far away from where I live, too much sweet / sick / rad bro, dude sort of attitude.

Now having had a TASTE of the base environment, I have motivation for what I want to get out of skydiving "training".

So, I certainly don't disagree that the skydiving time is essential for anyone wanting to pursue BASE. I'm just not sure that's it's necessary before getting your first intro in a relatively controlled environment such as TF.

As someone else said, they were more concerned about the person who got 200 skydives, then did only BASE jumps than the person with no skydives to start with, but then commited to an ongoing learning process in both BASE and skydiving.

By taking the hard line that the only way into base is through the skydiving door, I think that the BASE community is depriving itself of a potentially valuble source of outside knowlege.

Based on the fatality lists, accidents en route to exit points, object strike after canopy inflation, and landing accidents account for at least as many injuries and deaths as freefall object strike.

Getting some paragliding and climbing background COULD help with this. Those with a climbing background will generally be more secure on approaches and descents and paraglider pilots spend way more time controling their canopies than skydivers... they are also much more used to landing in tight areas.

Faber replied to my seeing of exprienced jumpers with bad deployments, off heading opening, and poor landings; that this sort of thing would eventually happen to me and without skydiving experience I would be more likely to get hurt.

My point was that skydiving experience may not be the best way to achieve skill in some of these areas. Flying paragliders will give you way more experience correcting off headings, avoiding objects, and landing in tight areas than skydiving.

While in TF I had someone tell me about the cliffs that they jump at home, then refuse to walk out of the canyon because it was "sketchy". If you are going to go into the mountains and jump off of cliffs does it not seem prudent that you might want to develop your movement skills as well as spending time at the local DZ?

An ongoing diet of skydiving certainly seems essential for the prudent BASE jumper... but is not an ongoing diet of paragliding, climbing, gymnastics / diving, and good general fitness / athletic ability equally wise??

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Flying paragliders will give you way more experience correcting off headings, avoiding objects, and landing in tight areas than skydiving.



Paragliders are going to better at dealing with an off heading opening? Huh? Where did you get that nugget? Paragliders are going to be better at avoiding objects? Huh? When was the last time you witnessed a slew of paragliders landing together in a tight area? I seem to recall seeing this all the time with skydivers at a large boogie or a large DZ (of course not all skydivers have good canopy control). Paragliders are better at landing in tight areas than a skydiver is? Wow it's nice to know that someone with only 3 skydives knows more about canopy flight than some skydivers who have dedicated jump after jump after jump towards their canopy control skills. It's also nice to know that someone with only 3 skydives assumes that skydivers have never had to land off in tight confined areas, not to mention Ground Launchers which not only land in tight areas but are definitely landing in the back-country environment. Think you're ready to be a Ground Launcher with your 3 skydives and 5 BASE jumps? I'll get video of it. But I'm guessing it's not the sort of video we'd want to show to your loved ones.

Hey I've got no problem with anyone regardless of their background wanting to get into BASE jumping (shit I'm only a newbie BASE jumper and have only begun to scratch the surface as to what this really means). But BASE jumping is BASE jumping. It is not skydiving, nor is it paragliding, climbing and/or gymnastics or any of the other sports you likened to BASE jumping. Kudos for you for wanting to be a BASE jumper with only 3 skydives. But to suggest that skydiving is only useful for tracking is showing us how much you really don't understand what it is you're getting into.

To quote Johnny Utah right now "Have fun, don't die".


Try not to worry about the things you have no control over

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I don't have email at home, so I wasn't able to respond last night.

If I had, I would have responded to Avery Thus-
Avery! Are you not the one who perfected the "publicity stunt" with an Easter Buny outfit off a well-known bridge a few years back. How can you dis another's "WAY?"

There is no "WAY" in this sport. Just individuals doing their best to fulfill their own dreams.

And to whoever said Jeb is better than Miles. Based on what I've seen of both, I'd say Jeb is better at wingsuits, but not, and I know many will disagree, at aerials or general body flight.

Miles is highly, highly skilled.

And to those who continue to attack his character, I have no response other than you really do not know what you are talking about.

I want to know one single instance, barring the tired old rail jump argument, in which Miles has in any way harmed the sport of base jumping.

And it really is uncool to try to undermin a guys business venture just because you don't like to see him on TV.

For many of you, base jumping is still a hobby, for Miles it is a profession. I doubt he would walk into your workplace and demean you in front of potential customers, business partners, etc.

And don't correct me on my spelling, or my grammar. If you get my drift that's all that's important.

-jimmy

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I am compelled to comment on this thread because I am one of the other students of Miles' FJC.
After talking to him I found out he was unaware of this discussion as he doesn't care about or pay attention to the criticism that goes on here.

His first two 'students' were are both truly 'world famous' paragliders. One has the world record longest paraglider flight and is current Canadian Champ, the other is a past Canadian and US nationals winner as well as a top placer at the world cup events. Both are tremendous athletes.
I have no accolades but have over 400 paraglider flights with over 300 hours of canopy time. Most of these flights were in Golden B.C. which is one of the top paragliding sites in the world. Lots of these flights were in very sick air. My longest flight was over 6 hours. I am an instructor of paragliding and have done many tandems.

Does this qualify me to Base jump? No. Can I fly a canopy? Yes.

Base canopies are far easier to fly, far less susceptible to collapses and have way more consistent landings. The wind seems to affect them less and there is little ground effect as the approach angle is too steep. Base canopies are way easier to land in a tight spot. I landed softly in the 10' circle at BD on both of my jumps there this year. I missed the button by two feet on my no-step landings.

I'm in my 40's with a family. Have had a few different careers, the latest being a raft guide and tandem paragliding instructor.

This is not meant to glorify or justify us as Miles' students but to let you know we were not the average 'wuffos'. He did his research before accepting us into his course.
He knew also the I was going to continue jumping from my paraglider to gain experience before doing any other objects. My latest was Wednesday from 3000' above the field. Nothing to run into, lots of time to think. I now know what terminal feels like. I've been practising tracking, flips, rolls and getting stable from different positions. Simulating riser turns and emergency procedures when the canopy opens. I had packing experience with my reserve canopies in my paraglider harnesses. I spent 20 minutes in the wind tunnel and am currently in a gymnastics club program to perfect flips and twists.

The thought of sky-diving has been on my mind for a long time and I was definitely discouraged to go to base by my sky-dive/paraglider friends. They had a lot of valuable input to what I was getting into. And more about what I'm doing now. I heard about Miles from a friend who had jumped with him before.

Effects on my life....base is all I think about. Just the way I was when I started paragliding. And skiing. But I didn't go out and do really stupid things then and I won't now.

All that Josh Briggs said ('AirCanada') I have to agree with. Miles was very safety conscience and made us repeat practise procedures over and over. He covered everything very well including past accidents. Not morbidly or maliciously but in a way that we could learn from them.

Do I feel comfortable tracking away from a cliff? Not yet. Can I track? yes. Will I do a cliff soon? no.

Paraglider drops are not base jumps. But I'm getting my sky-dive experience here. Without an engine. Miles knew that when he started to teach me.
Maybe one day I'll use a plane to get up there. But I can easily be 7000' over the valley in summer in my glider. And I had fun getting there. Maybe next summer I'll be looking for some cliffs. No, I definitely WILL be looking. I've actually found some near here.

I've also met locals (2.5 hour drive away) who don't have a problem jumping with us. They are actually quite stoked about exiting from my tandem glider.

I highly recommend Miles D.'s BASE camp. He was very professional and extremely safe with us. That may be completely different from his personal jumps. But I do believe that he carefully plans all his jumps. Sometimes $hit happens. That can happen to anyone.
I know I will be very careful to avoid that $hit.
Miles knew that about me before I started.

Scott Watwood
Golden, B.C.
Canada

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There are some good nuggets in here. Not being sarcastic, maybe I should take up paragliding to better learn canopy control.

My only concern is that your satisfaction in the course may be unfounded and once you have a few hundred jumps under your belt you may realize the true danger you were placed in. It seems there really are many disciplines that could hone you for base jumping, but I cannot think of doing it without learning to skydive. I personally think I could become much better by taking up gymnastics and paragliding. However, learning BASE through gymnastics and paragliding is like learning to fly a jet plane by learning to fly a canopy or a radio controlled plane.

To the DZ.com and Blinc Magazine and internet community, is it possible to have advertising for such courses banned from Skydiving Magazine until the quality of such learning techniques become acceptable or otherwise?
Looks like a death sandwich without the bread - Steve Deadman Morrell, BASE 174

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There is no "WAY" in this sport. Just individuals doing their best to fulfill their own dreams.



Would you say the same thing about society in general? Perhaps we shouldn't have any laws at all so that people can follow their "WAY"?

Laws are there for a reason (in most cases, anyway!), which is to support societal goals. Why shouldn't a community agree on self-policing goals which benefit everyone?

Do you follow the "call the locals" rule?
Coreece: "You sound like some skinheads I know, but your prejudice is with Christians, not niggers..."

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Comparing the base society to society in general might be a fun mental exercise, but it would go way beyond the scope of our internet discussion and would probably ellicit more arguments than we have already.

Just as we want each other to act appropriatly in regards to how we pursue the sport, we should also want each other to act appropriatly in how we interact on a personal level.

This all started becasue Miles is going to teach people to jump. Whether he's the MOST qualified jumper to do so is really not the point because
because he IS qualified to teach.

But because some people have personal issues with the logo on his canopy, or the stunts he pulls, or the "WAY" he approaches the sport in general, they are trying to undermine his credibility as a coach.

That struck me as extremely offensive. And those people should check their approach because they look no better with their way.

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I am one of the other students of Miles' FJC.



from the lack of official pre-requisites, Miles' FJC seems like a bad idea.

(then again, so did jumping off an object in the first place.)

a couple posts indicate he is still being selective.
if he carefully selects his students and customizes training for his clients, he will be seen as an innovator.

it seems MD is testing a new theory. if the concensus here is correct, it will quickly prove faulty.

hopefully it doesn't damage our access.

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I understand exactly what Nick means.



So do I, but the statement makes no logical sense as it is inherently self-contradictory ;-)



Actually, it does make logical sense, and I can set up a simple syllogism to prove it. "Those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them." Most fail to learn the lessons of history. Ergo, most make the same mistakes again and again and again.

It is okay (and even expected) to assume the missing words.

That being said, the fallacy you have indulged in has a name that eludes me at the moment. In layman's terms, however, if you know what someone means, it is considered not nice (not to mention self-indulgently fallacious) to pretend you don't. Point to Dexter, no point to you.

:P[#789abc]
If you don't know where you're going, you should know where you came from. Gullah Proverb

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Reason being: I didn't enjoy the skydiving scene. Too mechanized / contrived, to far away from where I live, too much sweet / sick / rad bro, dude sort of attitude.



And you learnt this after just three skydives?

You slag off skydivers about canopy control, how much do YOU know about CReW and accuracy? If I gave the same attitude to paragliding peeps after the equivalent of just 3 (three) skydives I'm sure they'd tell me where to get off.

When I did my first parachute jump in 1993 I really looked up to my instructor. When I did my first bungy jump the same year I really trusted the Kiwi Extreme guys doing the rigging. I think you don't really have a balanced perspective about skydiving or BASE, but are just blindly following the guy who strapped you into the coolest rollercoaster of your life.

Oh, and I'd like to see video of your 3 second HH delay at TF.

Thanks. :)

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was it the first BD clip where the dude has the wrong gear set up for BASE jumps and has a pc hesi and then a long snivel?



In my own defense.....Yes it was borrowed gutter gear (Warp 3/Pegasus). It's put two other first timers off the same bridge in previous years. My hesi/snivel was caused from the pure and simple fact that I pitched WAAAAY to soon.[:/] I was watching the peeps ahead of me go head low so I was concentrating on nailing the exit. Which as soon as I did, I pitched, and as soon as I pitched, I thought OH SHIT that was to soon. What you don't see in the video is after it opened with a single line twist headed right for the rappellers, I managed to kick out of it and yank a rear riser to get turned back upstream in time to dodge a boulder and land in the middle of the eddy. I never even had time to unstow the brakes.:o
Jump number two, I gave it the needed 3 sec delay and had a beautifal jump with only a 45 degree off heading opening and a dry landing.B|

Excuse the highjack....
Now back to your regularly scheduled bullshit:P


Huh?!? What cloud?!? Oh that!!! That's just Industrial Haze
Alex M.

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Actually, it does make logical sense



No, you're wrong. His statement was as follows: "The one thing we learn is we never learn."

You can't learn and not learn at the same time. Therefore, the statement is inherently contradictory and makes no logical sense.

I understand exactly the sentiment of what he's saying, but the statement itself is not logical.

Spock from StarTrek would agree with me... assuming he actually existed. Which he does!
Coreece: "You sound like some skinheads I know, but your prejudice is with Christians, not niggers..."

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