You know you're a pilot when


#41

Have you ever dropped them at the wrong school? :thinking:


#42

Only if it’s on the checklist, surely? :grin:


#43

No, being pilot and jumpmaster allows me to make a perfect spot every run. They have exited with the wrong rig though :smile:


#44

Can’t remember if I had posted this before…but can you imagine (well…I’m sure you can) the pucker factor here:


#45

Wow, someone trying to do an impression of Battle Royale!


#46

Great instructional video on what can happen with a bad spot. The jumper nearest the door or first out should have checked the spot and then told the group to get in the saddle high enough to clear the trees. You also need to be assertive enough not to accept the spot and ask the pilot for a second jump run.

Summary

It’s difficult not to get caught up in the moment and enthusiastically follow each other Lemming like to your doom. I only had to scare the crap out of myself once to learn that a majority does not always make the best decisions.

A few hundred jumps later I was in an 4 way at Zephyrhills with 3 low time jumpers (>200 jumps) and tried to tell the group to break up and pull high because of the wind. I was not so politely told to F-off old man. We were first out and the green light came on right over the DZ. Anyway, I broke off the formation going through 6k and was in the saddle by 4500. I was the only one that made it back to the DZ. And in a magnificent stroke of poetic justice, the young man whom had disrespected his elders ended up body slamming into the side of a very expensive motor home, enraging the owner and sending him to the hospital with a broken arm.

To his credit, he returned to the DZ at the end of the day, right arm in cast, and brought me a beer.


#47

Yeah. In that video, seems like the gal made a really good decision early to perhaps give up on the glide toward the planned and LZ and find another alternative (that road). Pretty heads up decision. Turning away from the LZ is probably one of those hard to instruct “target fixation” things similar to the 180 return to the airport mindset that gets some people killed.


#48

When I lived in Munich, we jumped a lot over in the Czech Republic at a DZ near Klatovy. One thing completely different about jumping there compared to the States is that they will spot with GPS and put you out in solid overcast. This took me a few jumps to get used to, but the spots were actually pretty good and freefalling through a few thousand feet of cloud with your girlfriend was kind-of cool anyway. But occasionally they would get it wrong, and I got used to hitchhiking back to the DZ (once standing on the back of a tractor) using hand gestures and poor German in place of Czech. It was mostly an agricultural area and I landed in an assortment of crops, mature corn being the most challenging and painful, due to you wanting to flare at the plant tops which was often 7 or 8 feet over the ground. The beer was good though, Pilsner Urquell being a local favorite which eventually made it to the US.


#49

When we were growing up, while far from the great Santini, dad made it abundantly clear about how things within in his realm would be run. For instance, when I was about 14 or 15 years old, I made the mistake of trying to adjust the heat while riding with him in our family station wagon. This was something that mom not only tolerated, but encouraged of her children, being that she cared for our welfare. But with the wily F-4 driver, things were a bit different.

“Son, do you see that all of the controls, whether it be to operate the vehicle, control the temperature, or tune the radio, are with easy reach of the driver? You can’t say that about any other seat in this car. That’s because the engineers wanted the driver to be in control. Not the front seat passenger, nor anyone in the rear. Understand?”

He would make this statement while drawing an invisible barrier with his hands from the center console over to his side of the instrument panel. And usually the proclamation was delivered with a very slight smirk on one edge of his mouth, like although he thought it a valuable lesson, it was one the he was definitely enjoying relating at my expense.

I’ve tried this tactic on my wife and girls, but they just tell me to stuff it. Women learn early that they can get away with that sort of behavior.