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jigneshsoni

AFF training options during Winter months

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I live in NJ and I believe all DZs in this area are closed for the winter. I was wondering what DZs are open in the country all year round. I was thinking to visit one of them while taking few days off from work to complete my AFF training.

I am seeking input on which DZs should I consider and why? How was your experience completing AFF within a few days? What are the challenges you had during this?

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You probably want to narrow the area you are willing to travel to down a bit.

There are plenty of year-round DZs in CA, AZ, FL, TX, etc...

This time of year Eloy is probably one of the safest bets for nice weather and tons of instructors/loads available. Perris and Elsinore also work but you can probably burn through training jumps a little faster in Eloy.

I'd do some tunnel before you go back up though if you've had a long layoff.
NSCR-2376, SCR-15080

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Spaceland has an A-license program that they will definitely support in terms of manpower and aircraft. Instructional staff is very good. Weather might not be as reliable as Eloy

Wendy P.
There is nothing more dangerous than breaking a basic safety rule and getting away with it. It removes fear of the consequences and builds false confidence. (tbrown)

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One challenge with setting yourself up to only complete AFF "in a few days" is that you may find yourself back home in NJ with a long layoff ahead of you before you can start to jump again to complete your A license. (I am assuming that ultimately earning your license is a goal of yours; if your only goal is to finish AFF then disregard).

Just finishing AFF is a milestone, but ultimately it's not one that means much unless you follow it up with completion of your license. If you finish AFF "somewhere else" then have a layoff before the NJ season starts, you will have to do at least one if not more recurrency jumps once the season starts in order to start jumping again.

A quick glance at your posting history shows that you've stopped and started skydiving several times; if your goal is to eventually be licensed, and you want to do it in the most financially advantageous way possible, you may wish to wait until you have the time, money, and weather to keep jumping regularly enough to get the whole A license program done.

If all you want to do is complete AFF, you've had some good suggestions for places to travel to do so.
"There is only one basic human right, the right to do as you damn well please. And with it comes the only basic human duty, the duty to take the consequences." -P.J. O'Rourke

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jigneshsoni

I live in NJ and I believe all DZs in this area are closed for the winter. I was wondering what DZs are open in the country all year round. I was thinking to visit one of them while taking few days off from work to complete my AFF training.

I am seeking input on which DZs should I consider and why? How was your experience completing AFF within a few days? What are the challenges you had during this?



I was not able to complete AFF in a few days.

I did just come from 11 days at Zhills. You can camp on site or rent a trailer on site. We were in short sleeves and shorts by 10 almost every morning. I did some AFF jumps there. It is one of many good DZs to train at.
Instructor quote, “What's weird is that you're older than my dad!”

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wmw999

Spaceland has an A-license program that they will definitely support in terms of manpower and aircraft. Instructional staff is very good. Weather might not be as reliable as Eloy

Wendy P.



Wendy has your back on this. The Spaceland program is second to none and they have the staff and planes to rock out 7 day per week. We do have frontal activity here in Houston in the winter so it would help if your schedule is flexible enough to make the trip based on the 10-day forecast.

I've seen dozens of training programs over the years and can say without reservation that Spaceland's is the best I know of.
Chuck Akers
D-10855
Houston, TX

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If you're not too far north in NJ then come down to VSC this weekend. We run AFF all through winter and temps will be in the 50s. Just get on 95 S and we're 30 south of Richmond.
"I encourage all awesome dangerous behavior." - Jeffro Fincher

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NWFlyer

One challenge with setting yourself up to only complete AFF "in a few days" is that you may find yourself back home in NJ with a long layoff ahead of you before you can start to jump again to complete your A license. (I am assuming that ultimately earning your license is a goal of yours; if your only goal is to finish AFF then disregard).

Just finishing AFF is a milestone, but ultimately it's not one that means much unless you follow it up with completion of your license. If you finish AFF "somewhere else" then have a layoff before the NJ season starts, you will have to do at least one if not more recurrency jumps once the season starts in order to start jumping again.

A quick glance at your posting history shows that you've stopped and started skydiving several times; if your goal is to eventually be licensed, and you want to do it in the most financially advantageous way possible, you may wish to wait until you have the time, money, and weather to keep jumping regularly enough to get the whole A license program done.

If all you want to do is complete AFF, you've had some good suggestions for places to travel to do so.




Thank for pointing out about my goals. I really had not thought about this in this perspective. My goal is sure to complete AFF as well as get the license. But never thought about how I will be current after that. On my first thoughts I sure want to stay current after that and not wait several months before I can jump again. I sure have some thinking to do now.

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It should be your intent to complete your A license as soon as possible; not just finish AFF. As an unlicensed skydiver you are required to make a jump every 30 days in order to remain "current" in your program and not have to re-do your last succesful jump (at a minimum). As a licensed skydiver you have much more wiggle room. Moving from one dropzone to another mid-training is often problematic as, oddly, very-few dropzones utilize the same "zero-to-A" training plan and it's not uncommon for some dropzones to discount experience obtained at other dropzones almost entirely because it does not fit into their mold. That's sad, but true. So, my advice for you is to go somewhere warm and take enough money to finish your A.


Chuck

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Same as you, I live in a cold snowy country. I went to Florida to pass my AFF and A license.

I got there on a thursday and was done with AFF on saturday at noon. So a bit less than 3 days.

4 days later I had my A license. Of course this can vary if you fail jumps or if the weather acts up.

I was able to do 25 jumps in 6 days, and only 1 during the last remaining 3 days due to high winds.

I chose to do that because I knew of a DZ here at home that opens this week end, so that's about 20 days in between my last and next jump, which is acceptable, but more would have started to bug my confidence a little. More than 6 weeks and I would probably have an instructor with me for a refresher, although not needed with my A license.

Also, I felt extremely comfortable at the DZ in Florida. I knew who could answer questions, load timings, started picking up habits after almost 2 weeks there. Now, I m gonna change plane, landing pattern, landing hazards, staff, gear........I am kind of freaked out.

If NJ is your home and will be for a while, I say wait for spring and get your AFF there. You won't be stressed out about jump numbers and fast progression.
Better be on the ground wishing you were up there than being up there wishing you were on the ground.

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