Fortus North's Sky Dive

29 November 2021

Dan Steel

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9 COURAGEOUS (and crazy!) individuals for our North team took a literal ‘leap of faith’ and completed a skydive from 10,000 feet, all in the name of charity! Dan Steel takes us back to see how their thrilling adventure went!

how was it?

This has been one of the most amazing experiences of my life.

The day itself was a really fun day, we had a large group of family and friends, and even some colleagues who weren’t jumping in attendance. There was a real sense of comradery amongst the courageous employees who were completing the jump, and every time someone landed, everyone was clapping and cheering, it was very nice!

As for the jump itself, the scariest part for me was going up in the aeroplane, I’ve never been on such a small plane! And what made it really comforting, was the large amount of duct tape that seemed to hold the thing together. I was in the last group to jump with Wes and Jack. After a couple of minutes of leaving the ground and making the very fast incline to 10,000 feet, we were about level with the clouds when I said to the ‘professional’ “We must be nearly at 10,000 feet by now?!” we were so high up. He showed me his altimeter…it read 4,500 feet…we weren’t even halfway yet!

After another couple of minutes of enjoying the beautiful Yorkshire coastline, the professionals jumped into action and whipped the door open, there was no messing around. Wesley was closest to the door so after one last fist bump, he was scooted over to the door on the professional skydiver’s lap, told to assume ‘the position’ (grab the handles of the harness, head back on the skydiver’s shoulders and legs scooped under the plane, hanging like a baby in a baba sling out of the door) and out they went. A few seconds later Jack was in position and he went too, then, it was my turn.

I turned back to the professional whose hands I’d just placed my life in, and asked him “What the hell are we doing?” he reminded me that we’re jumping out of an aeroplane at 10,000 feet! (He said that a lot, I think he was trying to scare us). Being the last one to leave, at first felt like the best place to be, however after seeing two people disappear out of a small door of a plane, you have longer for reality to set in and realise what you’re about to do! I placed my head back and scooped my legs under the plane, held the straps of my harness for dear life and waited for the professional to push us out. The freefall felt like it lasted a good minute, but in reality, it was 10-20 seconds. Looking down on the farm fields below was a view I can’t even begin to explain, it didn’t feel real, it was like I was in VR or something! After the freefall, the parachute pulled and I was handed the reins to spin around in the air which was a lot of fun! It doesn’t take long to get down and after a minute of spinning around, the professional takes back control and I assume the landing position (hands under your knees and lift your legs as high as you can) and we came sliding to a halt on our bums.

All in all, it was one of the most thrilling experiences of my life, so much so that I’m signing myself up for a solo jump next year, if anyone wants to tag along!

Why?

The main reason for the skydive was to raise money for 3 amazing charities, but really, completing a skydive was something I’ve always wanted to do and I think most of the team felt the same way. It feels like a real achievement to overcome the fear and also to have raised so much money for 3 charities made it even better. In the end, our efforts totalled £2,857 which was a brilliant effort – thank you to everyone who donated and made the jump worthwhile!

 

 

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