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Tomcat933

Skydiving in Winter

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I'm a sophomore in college, and since i've decided to pledge a fraternity this semester I won't be able to jump regularly again until November (just kill me). My dropzone is in SC, and apparently they jump all winter as long as enough people come out and the weather is decent. I was just wondering, do most of you jump regularly during the winter? Obviously dropzones in Florida and AZ do, but on a forty degree day, do the temps at altitude take the fun out of jumping? I've skied in 5 below zero, but i would imagine that 10 or 20 above at 120 mph would be fucking COLD.

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I jump all winter long, in Wisconsin. I haven't missed a calendar month in over 12 years. The whole key is that you aren't in the element for that long. You'll hear all about proper clothing, glove, etc. That is all important, but it is all about managing the cold for a short period of time.

Also it is where your head is at. Mind over matter type of thing.
Peace,
-Dawson.
http://www.SansSuit.com
The Society for the Advancement of Naked Skydiving

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I never look forward to winter jumping, but it is fun! I used to think 40 was too cold. Then 30. Now I pretty much just jump and don't worry too much about the temperature. Plenty of jumping in the 20s last winter.

But SC? Come on, they barely even have winter. Come visit CT when the snow falls!

More pics: http://www.skydivingstills.com/keyword/snow.

Dave

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I jump in the winter in WI. The most important part is keeping the wind off of ANY skin. Full neck and face coverage, good gloves (I prefer the foam neoprene type), etc. You are in the wind for a short enough period of time that you really don't need alot of insulation, just wind protection.



That is unless you don't wear a jumpsuit at all. If you jump nekkid, you spread the cold over a lot of surface area and then it doesn't feel as bad. ;)
Peace,
-Dawson.
http://www.SansSuit.com
The Society for the Advancement of Naked Skydiving

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I never look forward to winter jumping, but it is fun! I used to think 40 was too cold. Then 30. Now I pretty much just jump and don't worry too much about the temperature. Plenty of jumping in the 20s last winter.

But SC? Come on, they barely even have winter. Come visit CT when the snow falls!

More pics: http://www.skydivingstills.com/keyword/snow.

Dave




Hell, for sights like those id head up north JUST to jump.
Thanatos340(on landing rounds)--
Landing procedure: Hand all the way up, Feet and Knees Together and PLF soon as you get bitch slapped by a planet.

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The -20F was my low limit too. We jumped into a winter carnival for free tickets for the night festivities. The boss handed us a beer oops that grew to a few pitchers . No more jumps and banquet tickets cancelled.I upset alot of people with my Tevas landings in the snow and on ice.I went 35 years of consecutive jump in every month.Having a hangared plane withplowed taxi and runways helps.
One hint on fresh snow is to have people stand in the landing area fot depth perception problems {White-Out}to land close to.I had a guy follow me in on landing and was glad I broke my ankle and gave him a landing height to look at while I was mosning and groaning. I also use "Ice -Fishing " gloves from sporting goods stores about $8.00 in sizes too

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-20 seems like a common number ... that was my coldest jump, too. (My car wouldn't start, so we ended up hitch hiking to the DZ with our rigs on our backs.) I saw -28 on the jump plane's OAT at one point on the way up; not sure what it was when we finally got out, but it WAS bloody cold!

One nice thing is the air is so dense that you float like a feather under canopy (even an old round!). I also remember one especially vivid visual image from a canopy (PC) ride through a snow squall: the snow flakes were all stationary in space -- our relative descent rates were the same.

Bravoniner

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I’ve jumped every winter at The Ranch since I started and I really love it, but I think it requires the right attitude. If you approach it – or any other winter sport – thinking about “how much you hate the cold” you’re not going to enjoy being there. Instead I believe you really have to embrace the cold weather and all the great things that go with it. To that end, here are some specific suggestions:

1. If you have access to an outdoor hot tub use it first thing in the AM. For some reason 20 minutes in 100 degree F water in crisp morning air helps you acclimate to cold temperatures all day.

2. Beyond merely not having exposed skin, invest in a set of high tech thermal underwear. The engineering of these products is remarkable. I like the La Montana series from these folks: www.hotchillys.com/cm/Home.html

3. Do you drive a convertible? If so, go to the DZ with the top down, heater on and the tunes cranked. Acclimate and enjoy.

4. Appreciate the winter vibe at the DZ. Instead of a hanger full of manic adrenaline junkies all getting their fix – not that there isn’t a certain charm to that – on a winter day there’s often only 10 people in the hanger. The feel is more intimate and low key, with everyone really appreciating each jump.

5. Appreciate the winter air. The air is denser in the winter, which means your body and your canopy will fly better. On cold, low humidity days the visibility can be incredible. As an added bonus, trees that have lost their leaves present less surface area to disturb the winds.

6. Appreciate winter light. Really beautiful, particularly when you’re facing north.

7. Appreciate the snow. Landing in snow, especially powder, is great! (Look at the pics PilotDave posted!) You can slide and it doesn’t get your jump suit dirty. Before load one I like to trample a pattern in the snow, e.g., a 40-foot diameter peace sign. Great to look at from altitude.

8. When you’re done for the day add some Bourbon to your safety meeting. Viola!

Cheers,
Dean
www.wci.nyc

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I have a few winter jumps, including some hop-and-pops in -25C weather. I've got a few freefalls from 7000 feet in -2C weather (~30F), which naturally meant it was at below -20C at altitude.

It's not bad, as long as you layer clothing very well, and keep your extremities heated -- especially hands. I use latex gloves under my regular leather freefall gloves, and very rarely ski gloves.

I'm one of those who almost never wears gloves or neckwarmers during big way jumps, even from 16000 feet, when everyone else is chilly. However, during Texas winter big way camps, it becomes cold enough from 18000 feet for me to don a single layer of gloves.

Slide landings on hard snow are also fun too. Just watch your distance perception if the snow is featureless.

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8. When you’re done for the day add some Bourbon to your safety meeting. Viola!



Hot chocolate is always a good choice ... as long as it's fortified with Bailey's or peppermint schnapps. B|
"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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Holy hell! Do you jump clothed like your avatar in February in Wisconsin?:S:P:D



He does yeah - you wouldn't catch me doing it!!
~D
Where troubles melt like lemon drops Away above the chimney tops That's where you'll find me.
Swooping is taking one last poke at the bear before escaping it's cave - davelepka

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