Why are these Skydivers shaking hands?

August 21, 2011

Turns out there is a very valid reason.

Over this weekend, Motueka in our fair region, hosted the biggest skydiving (“Parachutists to old timers”) annual event in New Zealand.

your eyes have to struggle to see them doing their formations that far up...

In years past, …..ok actually quite a few, Nelson was a spot where skydivers also landed, however the expansion and bustle of the local Nelson Airport (now NZ’s 4th or 5th busiest depending on who you talk to) has now made that, sadly, impossible to continue with.

So it was Motueka to the rescue.

Each year around this time, something like 120 skydivers descend on Mot for the annual  Good Vibes Boogie 2011, hosted by Skydive Abel Tasman.

Even better news this year is that Skydive have a new plane,

Skydives just acquired Pilatus PC-6/B2-H4 landing at Motueka Airport

……and a beauty this Pilatus PC-6/B2-H4 is too ( rego – ZK-XIT ), just perfect for this type of work.

GoPro Cameras were all the rage....

Saw her in Nelson a week or two ago diving out of the sky at a surreal angle to land at Nelson Airport, where she underwent a new paint job to present herself in Skydives livery.

But back to the story, if you look very closely at the below photograph,

just to the right of top centre (you may have to click on it to enlarge the pic) you’ll notice what looks like a black dot with a streak above it. I’m pretty sure that is our lucky chap shaking hands above, although from my vantage point it didn’t look that big. (well big enough to be a human that is)

....nearly there...

Except as this next shot above amply demonstrates, at the time of this photo he wasn’t too sure how long it was going to take to get down to the ground.

And finally terra firma….with what I would believe to be the fastest heart rate on the day.

Taupo lends a hand...

Matter of fact I was just taking photos, and it was my wife who alerted me the situation, next door where all the competitors were, practically every set of eyes was skyward. ( just in case you are curious – it is not normal to land with two chutes open….especially like this!)

Overall though it was a beautiful weather day, no clouds at all, just beaut cool dense air – perfect for these sports persons, but some had good landings and others, well….I think they were practicing.

Here’s a photo of the landing zone area, those small aircraft in the background….well they’re from NZ’s largest flight training organisation,  NMIT Flight Training school campus, also based at the Motueka Airport.

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