Reader question: What’s your jumping weather window?


Up here in this hemisphere, it’s getting cooooooold. We’ve heard rumors that it’s actually getting hotter in that other hemisphere, but that seems like just hogwash. Whatever season you’re in, this month’s reader question is:

What’s your weather window?

How cold is too cold, and how hot is too hot? Do you have a formula? Like, the temperature must be at least twice your age minus 10 and no less than half your age plus 4? Not that that’s mine or anything …

Select responses will be printed in the upcoming issue of Blue Skies Mag. Comment here or email me at Sign your comment or email with your name or nickname as you would like it printed. Responses might be edited for spelling, grammar, clarity or space.

i57: Coming Soon

i57: September 2014 | Kjersti Eide, Gridset, Norway. Photo by Marius Back Dahle

We just got word that i57, the September 2014 issue of Blue Skies Mag, is in the mail to subscribers around the world!

If you don’t have your copy by the end of the month, please let us know! Be patient though, it’s not called snail mail for the fun of it.


If you’re not a current subscriber, you can >> SUBSCRIBE HERE << and tell us you want to start with this issue. Otherwise, we’ll start you with i58, the October issue.

i57: September 2014 | Kjersti Eide, Gridset, Norway. Photo by Marius Back Dahle

i57: September 2014 | Kjersti Eide, Gridset, Norway. Photo by Marius Back Dahle

We start out with a profile of Norwegian BASE jumper Kjersti “Kitty Cat” Eide, by the always fabulous Cynthia Guzman.

In the FlyBy: Take It DZ, the monthly comic by Nadene; tit4tat, the ever-popular breast-cancer awareness PSA; reader question of the month; Lonnie Bissonette’s first jump back at the bridge that bit him 10 years ago; and the opening of the 2014 DZ Awards Voting!

An ekstremsportveko ’14 photo essay by Chris “Giant” Stewart, Team One Call.

A peek into Douggs’ personal BASE logbook.

The Four Times You Might Quit Skydiving” by Gil Sharon. Yes, you might actually think of quitting someday.

A Photo Tour of the Windy City’s Two Biggest Boogies: Skydive Chicago’s Summerfest and Chicagoland Skydiving Center’s Independence Boogie, by Norman Kent.

Predicting the Future” by Moe Viletto. A select few were there to hear this speech Moe gave at Bridge Day a few years back; we thought it was still relevant enough for everyone to read today.

The Perfect Madness of a BASE-Jumping Dad” by Alastair Macartney. How do you reconcile being a parent with participating in the world’s most dangerous sport?

James La Barrie has more DZ-management wisdom. “The Devil Is In the Details” will help your DZ go from good to unforgettable. More business = more jumps for you.

Feel like it’s been a rough year for fatalities? Sydney Owen Williams, former n00b, feels you. “If You Stay” might help you keep trucking.

4-way guru Kurt Gaebel of the NSL explains why you might be disappointed with your outdoor results after an awesome indoor training session in “The 4-Point Indoor Illusion.”

I’ll admit it, I asked the Fuckin’ Pilot how he managed to get porn in Dubai. His response — and more, of course — in “Fuckin’ Porn: Pros & Cons.” Remind me to think before I ask questions.

Melanie Curtis Grillet,, makes friends EVERYWHERE. You totally can, too. “Car Selfies and RAPA Revelations” might help you figure out how.

SkyGod. Rants.

We hope you like it! Please let us know what you think, and don’t forget to vote in the 2014 DZ Awards. Results will be in the December issue.

Happy September!

Reader question: What is the most beautiful thing you’ve seen jumping?


Answers to our monthly reader questions are published in The FlyBy section of Blue Skies Mag. The September question is:

What is the single most beautiful scene, landscape, imagery or sight you’ve seen while skydiving or BASE jumping?

Could be on the ground but I’m going to guess most of your answers will be a sight from the air. Mine was a light-contact high pull at Titusville with Kolla, Justin Carmody, Ward Hessig, Isaiah McCauliffe and Grant (I’m sure Grant has a last name but I cannot remember it) way back in 2005. I was at a way lower wing loading than everyone else so I had floated back away from everyone. My inability to keep up was a blessing in disguise; the sight of them all together under colorful canopies, against this perfect Florida sky with the sun breaking through the clouds like a spotlight from heaven … I almost cried and told myself to mentally take a photo because this – this friendship and beauty and open sky – was what I wanted my life to be about. It was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen, and by far the most beautiful jumping.

So what’s your take-my-breath away sight that you’ll remember the rest of your days?

Answer here in the comments or email me,, with your name as you want it printed in the mag. Responses may be edited for clarity and/or length.

i56: The Getaway

i56: August 2014 | Justin Russell and Brandon Chouinard doing a sunset freefly “dance off” during The Revolution Boogie held at Skydive Dallas. Photo by Randy Swallows •

This is the 56th issue of Blue Skies Magazine. Wow. It will mail this week, so you probably do not have it yet. Sit tight and bake your mail carrier brownies (the good kind if you’re in Washington or Colorado, the double fudge kind anywhere else) — if you don’t have your August mag by September 1, please email so we can get you sorted.

i56: August 2014 | Justin Russell and Brandon Chouinard doing a sunset freefly “dance off” during The Revolution Boogie held at Skydive Dallas. Photo by Randy Swallows •

i56: August 2014 | Justin Russell and Brandon Chouinard doing a sunset freefly “dance off” during The Revolution Boogie held at Skydive Dallas. Photo by Randy Swallows •

On the cover: “The Getaway” by Douggs, The story behind this video:

In The FlyBy:

  • Your monthly favs, “Take it DZ” comics by Nadene at Adventure Creative, Reader Question & tit4tat‘s monthly contribution.
  • Routine Exit Turns into Anything But” by Anthony Rocco, a tale of two skydivers who got away with a sketchy tailgate exit, plus Skydive Arizona‘s safety guru Bryan Burke’s insights on the incident.
  • LKXA Extreme Barcelona International Action Sports Cup” by Mike Carpenter,
  • David Winland doesn’t just tattoo cool shit, he golfs and writes about it, too, in “Paragolf!”

Amy Chmelecki tells us how, in “RBAF over NYC,” the Red Bull Air Force got away with this stunt and a half:

Art Shaffer and Christina Arango take you to the beaches of Normandy for the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings, in “D-Day + 70.”

This month’s SkyCouple is Frank and Aleth Matrone, interviewed by the awesome Eli Godwin.

Katie Peterson introduces you to Laura Dawson, an artist who creates skydiving-themed glass pieces, in “Perfectly Good Glass.” Laura also has the distinction of being married to Jeff Dawson, our favorite naked skydiver!

James LaBarrie,, writes to the DZ management crowd, but we hope fun jumpers enjoy reading about the mechanics of a winning skydiving business too. This month, “Connect, Inspire … Win” is all about how DZ staff – and even individual fun jumpers – connecting with new customers makes good business sense. So if you like your DZ and want to keep jumping there, you can help them stay in business by connecting with and welcoming the new tandem student customers!

Sydney Owen Williams wants you to “Make a List and Check It Twice” to keep yourself alive amongst idiots in the sky. She says it a lot nicer and more eloquently, of course.

4-way and competition fans, Kurt Gaebel, NSL, has you covered in his Turning Points column. This month, “4-Way History in Jeopardy.” Airspeed going home empty-handed from the Czech Republic? Le gasp!

The Fuckin’ Pilot hands you some “Fuckin’ Tandem Humor” if you’ve run out of jokes to tell your students.

Wax the Booty!” Melanie Curtis Grillet,, started the DZ Dance Off Challenge, aka the greatest thing since sliced dancing.

SkyGod rants.

We hope you like this issue! If you have any feedback, letters to the editor, comments, concerns, news or jokes, email me,, or submit it all online.

Reader Question: +/- Five Years

5-year anniversary photo shoot

We have another two-part question for you readers! Our fifth anniversary issue is coming up (the June/July combined issue, #55*) and we are quite naturally reminiscing about the last half decade — but also looking forward at what the next five years might bring.

So, our question(s) to you is (are):

  1. What has been your greatest accomplishment in the last five years?
  2. What is your biggest goal for the next five years?

*We have enlisted the infamous Robert J. Carmody to take pretty pictures for our anniversary again. Stay tuned … Better yet, subscribe now and you’ll get issue #55 with his soon-to-be masterpieces in them, already printed out for your framing needs. Teaser photo below. What does it all mean???

5-year anniversary photo shoot

How Can Mirrors Be Real If Our Eyes Aren’t Real