Tandil`s Parachuting Club

The Tandil Parachuting Club is the ideal site for making a baptism parachute jump.

The Tandil Parachuting Club is the ideal site for making a baptism parachute jump. Here is our own experience.

One, two, three...

A deep silence invades all of us inside the plane. The pilot asserts that we are at the right altitude with a nod of his head and the instructor shouts: “All right, boys! Be quiet! Action is coming!!”. At that moment, the plane reaches cruising speed. “Now”. In one instant, the hatch is opened and the silence is overrun by the noise of the propellers cutting through the air.

“Who told me to come here?” I wonder, but it is too late for regrets. We stand in at the plane gate and our feet are almost in the air. In front of us, a huge wall of white clouds contributes to the colorful void. As I slowly swing ahead, the instructor tells me that we will get loose at the count of three. “One, two, three.... Ooooohaaahhhhh..........”

  • Almost forty seconds of free fall

    Almost forty seconds of free fall

  • A deep silence

    A deep silence

  • A unique sensation

    A unique sensation

  • Joyful, euphoric, calmed down

    Joyful, euphoric, calmed down

The free fall speed distorts our faces and the air gets into our entire bodies, along with a unique sensation that we will never have on solid ground. We start to spin and spin, until we get stabilized by forming a sort of arch with our bodies. Actually, although we are two people, going in tandem makes us form only one body.

We look at the cloudy mattress into which we plunge, and as soon as we get wet, we keep on falling responding to gravity. That is a hallucinating, unique, unimaginable once-in-a-lifetime feeling… hard to put into words: it is just a pleasure.

Almost forty seconds of free fall and the altimeter already marks 1,200 meters. At the moment, the instructor tells me we are going to open the parachute and in a matter of seconds he pulls the string and a small backpack opens up releasing the parachute. At that point, we feel that some force sucks us upwards. In fact, it means that we have stopped falling and are slowed down by the air, with the open parachute and manipulating the commands towards where our eyes are set.

As we fly and loose height, the fields look larger, as well as the people and the air club hangar. We are about to touch down, which we do almost without notice. We land and release the screams we had restrained up there. Joyful, euphoric, calmed down, a little bit sad at the same time, we would all have liked the fall to last a little longer...

A Little Bit of History

Parachuting used to be an exclusively military activity and the parachuters would jump from short heights to reach the ground quickly, thus avoiding to be exposed to the enemy. Round parachutes would be used in these cases, which would fall wherever the wind wished.

Nowadays, parachuting has found its sport variant, which is obviously much safer. Unlike what most people believe, this is not a crazy sport. It is an activity regulated by the Air Force, in which all the safety measures are taken and nothing is innovated. Everything has been carefully thought and studied. The “What if it does not open?” myth is not real. We just have to get a little bit deep into the matter to see for ourselves… why it opens.

Accidents happen due to an excess of confidence. Low spins, which are very picturesque to see from solid ground, are the ones that jeopardize the parachuter and are totally unnecessary. A mistake never made by students, as they do not have either the confidence or the experience. They are very prudent and they land slowly. There are also air accidents, but this is not to be blamed on the sport. That is why it is necessary to learn about the state of planes when one attends a school. Getting counseling is far from wasting time.

Autor Pablo Etchevers Fotografo Eduardo Epifanio

DurationDuration: 40 minutes


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