The World’s Most Insane BASE Jumping Destinations from The World’s Most Insane BASE Jumping Destinations
The World’s Most Insane BASE Jumping Destinations
People have always craved adrenaline-inducing adventures. Scuba and cave diving, heli skiing and highlining, to name a few, attract more and more thrill seekers. It’s no surprise that falling from extremely high altitudes is catching up. Tall mountains and man-made structures make for the perfect locations. Skydiving is considered less dangerous because you’re jumping off from a much higher altitude. With BASE jumping, you don’t usually have more than 15 seconds to open up your parachute. Official statistics on how many people have died don’t exist. Some unofficial lists count around 250 deaths since 1981. Other estimates say there is about one fatality per 60 participants, according to Destination Tips.
Meru Peak in the Himalayan Mountains
One of the highest BASE jumps ever completed was in 2006 when Glenn Singleman and Heather Swan jumped from 6,604 meters (about 21,666 feet) up Mount Meru in the Indian Himalayas. They climbed for more than 20 days and flew down to the BASE camp for about two minutes, reaching speeds of about 125 mph. You can see a BASE jump from a point at the top of the East Face of Meru Peak in this video.
Perrine Bridge in Idaho
If you don’t have a permit and want to know what BASE jumping feels like, the only place in the U.S. to do that is Perrine Bridge. Leaping off the 1,500-foot structure and opening a parachute midair is one of the best adventures in Idaho. You can jump off the Perrine Bridge year-round. You will be flying down to the canyon floor under the bridge – the ultimate thrilling feel. You can see what it looks like in this video.
Burj Khalifa in Dubai
The tallest man-made construction in the world – at 2,716 feet, roughly twice the height of the Empire State Building – should be on your bucket list if you plan to BASE jump. It will be about 30 seconds long as you reach a speed of more than 130 mph. See it here. Flying down may look like a scene from a Superman or a Spider Man movie, but it’s illegal.
Lauterbrunnen Valley in Switzerland
The Swiss village is like a magnet for daredevils who love BASE jumping from about 2,600 feet. During the peak season, they can be seen plummeting down almost every few minutes as there are many jumping points. However, the more people go, the more will get injured or die on impact after hitting the cliffs. Beginners are not discouraged from trying the extreme sport, as there are several BASE jumping schools to train them. See a BASE jump in this video.
Angel Falls in Venezuela
If you don’t want to jump of the tallest building, consider the highest waterfall in the world. The falls are 3,230 feet in height with a vertical drop of 2,647 feet. This is a very intense jump, as seen in this video, and getting to the waterfall is not easy – you’ll have to hike through the jungle for about five hours. Strong winds and water spray make the jump very technically difficult.
Troll Wall in Norway
The Troll Wall in Norway - with a vertical drop of 3,600 feet, one of the biggest in all of Europe - has become a very popular BASE jumping destination, even though it’s illegal because rescue teams can’t easily get to thrill seekers who encounter a problem. In 1984, Carl Boenish, the “father” of modern BASE jumping, died here shortly after setting the world record for the highest BASE jump in history. You can see a jump in this video.
Gocta Waterfalls in Peru
Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 3.0
New River Gorge Bridge in West Virginia
New River Gorge Bridge, which is 876 feet tall, has been the most popular BASE jumping spot in the country every year in October since 1980. This year’s Dridge Day is on the 15th. This is the only day you’re allowed to leap off the bridge. Go there and see jumpers leaping more than 800 feet into the New River Gorge below. Rappelling, skydiving, and more adventures abound.
Verdon Gorge in France
One of Europe’s most gorgeous river canyons is the Gorges Du Verdon in south-eastern France, in the midst of the region of Provence, Alps and the French Riviera. The gorges have sheer, plunging cliffs, some of which are 2,300 feet high, twice the height of the Eiffel Tower. The jump looks terrifying.
Mount Thor in Baffin Island in Canada
Photo Modified: Wikimedia Commons/ CC BY-SA 3.0
Canada's Mount Thor in in Auyuittuq National Park is the world's steepest and tallest cliff with a record vertical drop of 4,101 feet. BASE jumping is illegal, as rescue teams can’t reach people in time, but that hasn’t stopped adrenaline-seekers from trying to conquer the peak. The jump is also very technical as you can see in this video. You are very close to hitting the cliffs and rocks.
Christ the Redeemer Statue in Brazil
This is one of the lowest BASE jumps in the world – at only 98 feet – but that doesn’t make it less dangerous. Quite the opposite actually. Jumpers have just about a second to open up their parachute. This is why BASE jumping off the statue is illegal. You can see the famous Austrian daredevil Felix Baumgartner jumping from the statue’s arm in this video.
KL Tower in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Malaysia hosts several BASE jumping events a year. The KL Tower is popularly known as the world’s BASE jump center. Malaysia’s First BASE jump took place there in 1999. It is also home to the longest urban BASE jumping event, with more than 100 people jumping over four days and three nights. The jump off the platform is about 985 feet high.
El Capitan at Yosemite National Park
El Capitan in Yosemite National Park rises nearly 3,600 feet above the valley floor (7,500 feet above sea level) making it one of the most prominent features in the park. BASE jumping is illegal in national parks but a few people have been known ignore the rule. See BASE jumping pioneer Carl Boenish as he jumps off El Capitan here. There have been calls to remove the ban on BASE jumping in the park.
Tianmen Mountain in China
Tianmen Mountain is famous for the the world's longest cable car ride. But the mountain, which is almost 5,000 feet high, is also a popular location for BASE jumping. The most well-known case is Jeb Corliss’ daredevil flight through a tiny crack in Tianmen Mountain, as seen in this video. He jumped off a helicopter which may not be considered by some as a “BASE jump." You can see a daring wingsuit BASE jump here.
Jin Mao Tower in Shanghai
This 88-story landmark skyscraper has become a very popular BASE jumping location. It even hosted an International BASE Jump Show a decade ago in honor of the Chinese National Day holiday. Many thrill-seekers have since made the 1,174 feet plunge. Strong high winds make the jump technically difficult.