BASE Jumping

My passion in life is jumping and it’s my job, too. I’m a jumper with the Red Bull Air Force.
-- Miles Daisher, BASE jumper

Daisher standing on a bridge with sunglasses, helmet and parachute packWe met up with Miles Daisher on the Perrine Memorial Bridge, just north of Twin Falls, Idaho, where it is perfectly legal to hurtle oneself over the railing any day of the year.

But you better be prepared for the 486 foot drop to the Snake River below!

And Miles Daisher is definitely prepared. He lives three miles from the bridge and has made several thousand jumps.

We learned that you did not have to sneak around in the dark to jump off a bridge, you could come out in the middle of the day and jump off a terrific bridge that has an awesome landing area.
-- Miles Daisher

Daisher headfirst in the air after jumping off the bridgeThe acronym BASE comes from the fixed objects a person can jump off: Building, Antenna, Span, and Earth. Daisher says what he does is a sport, not just some crazy thing to do. But he admits that it takes a special kind of person to pull it off.

People think that this is just a crazy hobby. It is a sport. There’s definitely a lot of athleticism that goes into it, a lot of mental timing. It takes a specialized mindset. You really need to stay focused all the way into your landing, even when things are going nuts.
-- Miles Daisher

Daisher preparing to landDaisher says that, relatively speaking, this is a safe sport. But mistakes here can be fatal. The margin of error is thin. And you need to know when to back off, when to call it a day.

A lot of people don’t like to use the word ‘Extreme,’ but I think it’s an extremely good word! This is one of those cutting edge sports. Lots of things are happening in a quick amount of time. If you don’t do it in the right conditions, and don’t rig your gear properly, and if you’re not prepared… We’ve had a couple hundred deaths since the early ‘80’s. You’re going to have to make judgment calls, with every jump you do. And in order to have a good hike out, you need to have a good landing.
-- Miles Daisher