BASE Jumping, Highlining, Zipping…What the heck is the difference?

Bridge Day for the adventure-goer is all about adrenaline. But if you’re new to the festival or just like to the last time you got your heart beating was on the teacups – all the opportunities at Bridge Day may be confusing. So here’s the 411 on all the heart-pumping stuff we have going on:

BASE Jumping This is the coup de gras of adventure sports. The biggest rush you can get. And BASE jumpers take their love for flying high to the New River Gorge one time a year on Bridge Day.

BASE stands for Building, Antenna, Span, and Earth. BASE jumpers leap from any and all of these four fixed objects with parachutes designed specifically for rapid deployment. It’s known around the world as the most extreme of extreme sports.

Bridge Day Flags

To be a BASE jumper, it takes parachuting experience, and of course guts. You can’t just walk up and decide to parachute off a bridge. This takes some advance coordination. You can however watch until your heart is content.

Highlining Being on the Bridge Day highline may conjure images of ladies swinging from a circus high wire. Well, this is nothing like that. Highlining on Bridge Day is ziplining – from the Bridge down some 700 feet. And it’s fun.

Bungee Jumping Try again. We’re like way freaking high in the air and have steel beams all around us. We’re all for adventure, but are you crazy?

Rappelling Fixed ropes under the bridge’s catwalk provide an opportunity for teams of rappellers to descend (and ascend) throughout the day. Teams for rappelling are selected by a lottery system each June, but watching is open to everyone.

Skydiving Tri-State Skydivers, owned by Bridge Day BASE jumper Larry LeMaster (you have surely seen Larry jump in with the giant American Flag!), is bringing skydiving for experienced and inexperienced jumpers to Bridge Day (October 12-18) at the New River Gorge Airport (3 miles Northeast of the New River Gorge Bridge). They'll have a Cessna 182 and tandem skydives will be available for those wanting to make their first skydive (no experience required). Prices are $250 for tandems (reservations require a $50 deposit). If you contact Larry early, tandems are only $210. Video of your jump is also available. You can also contact Larry Lemaster at (740)894-JUMP(5867) with your questions. There will also be tandem jumping at Fayette Airport (NOT parachuting from the Bridge) on the South Side of the New River Gorge provided by West Virginia Skydivers.

Do you have your license to chill or a need for speed? No matter, Bridge Day will offer you a bit of both in just 18 days.