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ShannonElise

First time at Deland... and I'm a little nervous

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First, I tried to see what else has been posted like this and I could not find anything recent. So here goes...

I started jumping in May and have 153 jumps. They have all been at the same DZ.

I am traveling to Florida to jump at Deland at the end of November and I'm a little nervous. I jump at a relatively small DZ, with what I have been told, is a very small landing area. Also, we only jump a 206 and 182, so I'm stoked for larger, quicker planes.

Anyway, any tips or information would be greatly appreciated! It's my first time away from home and first time at a pretty big DZ.

Shannon

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I do basically the same thing at every new DZ I visit:

Get the briefings on the landing pattern, hazards, outs, etc...
Find an LO
Introduce myself and give them an idea of my experience level
Go jump (something reasonable in size you're comfortable with)
Hang in brakes a bit after deployment and then follow the crowd in on the pattern.
Repeat

After a few jumps it will feel routine to be jumping from Otters and such... just don't panic at the sight of all those canopies in the sky... they are generally much farther away than you think.
NSCR-2376, SCR-15080

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It's OK to be a little nervous. Keeps you on your toes.

As said, get the brief, familiarize yourself with the air to ground picture of the DZ, landing areas and patterns then keep your ears and eyes open. There's a lot going on in the air as well as on the ground.

You'll love Deland!

Great community before, during and after hours. Really fun people, great aircraft, lots of help if you ask.

jon

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Deland is my favorite dz. be ready for a culture shock. Everything has been said.... Get a briefing. The landing areas are big and plentiful. Stay heads up, now there's more than just 3 other canopies in the air and landing. Pay attention to landing patterns and you'll be golden. Have fun! Maybe I'll see you there!
I was that kid jumping out if his tree house with a bed sheet. My dad wouldn't let me use the ladder to try the roof...

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I have only been to a few DZs outside of my home DZ, but like your situation I was going from a very small place to a very big one. One thing that made me feel more comfortable, after doing what everyone else has suggested (briefing etc.) is to watch a load or two open and land. Watch where and how they setup their landing patterns. Don't forget to have fun!

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Land in the "student" area at Deland... it will keep you away from the high-speed traffic, and gives you lots more room.

Deland is a great place to jump.... have FUN!

It would be a VERY good use of your time there to take a canopy control course with Flight-1. They have three different course which would all be good for you at ~150 jumps: 101, 102, 103.

http://flight-1.com/sport/
The choices we make have consequences, for us & for others!

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I went to DeLand last spring for some coaching and 2 flight-1 courses. Best thing I did was to get current with Rob over at Skydive U then get some coach jumps after my course. The professionalism and organization at the DZ more than compensate for its size. I had 60 jumps at the time, mostly at a Cessna DZ and I improved as a lot over the course of the 6 days.

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What are the actual dates? I am going to be in Orlando the same time frame. My fiancee and I are doing the whuffo amusement park thing but im also going to try to get some jumps in. Maybe I will see you out there. :)
"The restraining order says you're only allowed to touch me in freefall"
=P

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Oh, don't be nervous, it's a great dz and the people are friendly!
If you are nervous about your accuracy or landings, I agree that landing in the student area is a good idea. It's far away from the main landing area, so you shouldn't be around any high speed canopies. If you tell manifest that is your plan, they'll make sure to send a truck to the field so you won't have a long hike. I opted to land there just last weekend on my first jump back after a few months of not jumping.

Since you're not used to so many people on the plane, make sure you're at the loading area in plenty of time so you can talk to everyone else about the exit order and tell them what your plan is. If you're looking for people to jump with, let them know in the Office. You'll find most of the flat flyers at the creeper pad adjacent to the building.

If you use a packer, I do recommend the packers at the dz. I've used them for years and they are quite experienced. The bar is well stocked and fun to hang out at. The deck is a nice place to hang out and watch the patterns and landings of other jumpers. I hope you have fun and enjoy your visit! When are you coming?
She is Da Man, and you better not mess with Da Man,
because she will lay some keepdown on you faster than, well, really fast. ~Billvon

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DougH

What are the actual dates? I am going to be in Orlando the same time frame. My fiancee and I are doing the whuffo amusement park thing but im also going to try to get some jumps in. Maybe I will see you out there. :)



What dates are you heading down? I will be down the first two weeks of Dec.

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Shannon, Take Bill up on this offer! Its a great use of time to get a better understanding of your gear so that when you want a new container or canopy down the road you will know what you want to get. UPT, PD, Aerodyne, Alti-2 and everyone else is right there just off airport and if you call ahead they can usually do tours for you and get you a pull up cord or two :)
Get the DZ briefing, and watch a load or two land before making a jump. Compared to home the landing area will be huge but there are unique hazards at all DZ's. Also ask for things like seat belt removal height and the seating arrangements in each plane. Depending on what plane they are flying that day you might need to learn how to open or shut the door if you are getting out first. Figure out the spot and how to watch for traffic under canopy but have fun.

Also since you are down there see about swinging by the Orlando tunnel for a few minutes.

Yesterday is history
And tomorrow is a mystery

Parachutemanuals.com

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As others have mentioned get a briefing and make friends with an Instructor. I made many friends on my trip to DeLand that I still stay in touch with. I was weathered out but we talked a lot. I was like yourself coming from a small drop zone then went to Zhills and DeLand on the same trip. Say hi to Steve Hubbard for me he's an AFFi @ DeLand and also does lots of Wingsuit flying. He is very knowledgeable and will help answer any questions you might have.

There are some great people who will help you at DeLand. Also don't be afraid to ask questions. I would also recommend stopping into Blue Skies Mag, Chutting Star, Aerodyne, PD, UPT, L&B, Vigil they are close by and many are on the same street! Great People and fun to see behind the curtain of the skydive industry in my mind :)

Have a blast and blue skies!

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I have jumped at DeLand for many years. A very nice DZ.
If you check on Google Map you can see the airport has several runways and taxiways which means a lot of paved areas. In between them obviously, you have grassy areas. In order to land in the grass I suggest you to plan your descent before reaching 1500 ft. Test your penetration into the wind early and, if you penetrate into the wind, on final, concentrate on landing a bit passed a runway or taxiway to keep a lot of grassy area ahead of you. You should avoid to land at the end of a grassy area where a runway or taxiway is near.
If by any chance, you see yourself about to land on a taxiway, don't try a late turn or early flaring to slow you down with the hope to make the grass. Keep your canopy straight. Concentrate to make the best normal landing on the paved area.
Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.

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Back about ten years ago I went from a very small DZ to ZHills and it was a wonderful experience. It was also a great experience to visit other DZ's in Florida (including Deland) because they are not retardedly far from one another and each one has it's unique vibe, et cetera. Not only this but each dropzone tends to be particularly good at certain disciplines and this depends a lot on who is there and what the landscape is like, et cetera. Some will have great swoopers and others will have particularly skilled belly fliers and others are more free-fly-friendly and some have fantastic canopy people et cetera et cetera. and since no two dropzones are exactly the same, the vibe and culture also varies quite a lot from place to place - some will suit you better than others (some dz's have more "fun" jumpers and some have more team-oriented/"serious" fliers)... Some are really in the middle of nowhere so there is no night-life outside the dz (but a rather active bonfire to compensate!!)...

Looks like you may not have time to go anywhere other than Deland (which was and aparently still is an amazing DZ)... So my advice would be: start saving up for a longer trip to FL!!!!! :P

Oh, and ask the local people where is best to stay before you book your accommodations... Some hotels can be real dumps and not so handy for getting to the dz. Some people rent out their trailors, et cetera so worth asking around (in my opinion).

"There is no problem so bad you can't make it worse."
- Chris Hadfield
« Sors le martinet et flagelle toi indigne contrôleuse de gestion. »
- my boss

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Thanks. Always good to know the most recent changes. But I guess the runways are still about the same.
My point was to tell the lady a couple of tricks to land on the grass and what to do in case she would land on a taxiway.

Few years ago, unfortunately, we have lost a girl from the Canadian team. She had experience but only few dozens of jumps on her new canopy. It looks like she has landed on the taxiway after stalling her canopy, struggling to try a landing on the grass.

Personally, I have had a total there and you can be sure that under my reserve, as early as possible, I evaluated the best way to land in a grassy area located on the North side of the airport but between some taxiways...

OTOH I like very much this DZ. You don't have to be afraid to land far way from the packing area since two pickups are continuously dedicated looking for jumpers and by the time you pick up your canopy, they are alreay waiting for you to give a ride back to the club.
Learn from others mistakes, you will never live long enough to make them all.

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My wife and I love Deland so much we're moving from Naples to Deland on dec 18th. Were 2 min from the dz and less than half a mile from my work now! So stoked! Maybe we'll see you up there. I drive almost 2 hours to the nearest decent dz now and it's just too far. I'll be tattooing at untouchable ink. I'll always hook up a fellow skydiver!
Yes shameless plug....
I was that kid jumping out if his tree house with a bed sheet. My dad wouldn't let me use the ladder to try the roof...

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DeLand is the Center of Skydiving on Planet Earth.

The Industry is here along with World Class coaching and training.
The DZ has a history of Sport Parachuting going back to the very early 1960’s.

DeLand is a fun town with lots of entertainment. Some of the local motels and hotels near the DZ offer special Skydiver Rates.

At the Perfect Spot bar and Restaurant you can listing to some Drunken Ass Jump Stories that Andrea (Skymama) just loves to hear again and again. B|

Parachute Labs Inc. is on the Airport, they make “The Racer” and “Firebolt Main”. You should visit them.

I Jumped with the guys who invented Skydiving.

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