TWIN FALLS — Despite temperatures reaching the 90s, Miles Daisher’s positive energy was unfaltering — and he was well on his way toward a BASE jumping record Monday evening,
“It’s beautiful. It’s perfect. We’re so lucky right now,” Daisher said after his 22nd jump of the day.
After one more jump from the I.B. Perrine Bridge, followed by another ascent up the 486-foot canyon wall, he complained of a cramp but said, “We’re gonna make it.”
Daisher is attempting to break the unofficial record held by Danny Weiland for the most human-powered jumps from the I.B. Perrine Bridge in 24 hours. He began Monday, a day earlier than planned, because of ideal weather conditions.
By the time he finishes at 11 a.m. Tuesday — the summer solstice — Daisher hopes to have completed 62 jumps.
He was off to a good start, having made five landings within the first hour of his event. By 6:15 p.m., he’d completed 24 jumps.
A steady crowd of about a dozen people filtered in and out to watch as the 48-year-old BASE jumper made landing after landing onto the bulls-eye of a painted target on the ground.
“They’ve done a lot of trail work leading up to this,” said Cheryl Wheeler, a friend of Daisher’s who planned to offer support throughout the event.
Daisher made his first jump and hike up the trail in about 12 minutes. He’d need to average about three jumps per hour to beat Weiland’s record.
“I’ve never seen anything like this, where it takes this much effort and this much energy,” Red Bull sponsored athlete Luke Aikins said.
Aikins was helping to coordinate safety efforts among the 30-man crew that would help Daisher throughout the event.
Packers at the landing spot and on the bridge were checking and re-checking the packed parachutes. These were hiked back up to the Perrine Bridge, where Daisher — after riding a bicycle across the bridge to the jump spot — would get loaded up again.
Chris Peterson of Davis, Calif., started his shift to help pack Monday evening. Daisher had taught Peterson to BASE jump about 10 years ago.
It takes about 15 to 30 minutes to pack a parachute, Peterson said.
“We could do it in 10 minutes if we were really hustling, but there’s no reason to,” he said.
Daisher had 18 parachutes available.
Concerned about Daisher overdoing it in the first couple hours, Aikins offered advice between jumps, reminding him “it was the tortoise that won the race, not the hare.”
Although Daisher cracked jokes about gaining weight by all the food he’d eaten, Peterson said he’d been keeping up a steady pace.
What will it take for the BASE jumper to make the record while facing exhaustion?
“For Miles, it’s going to be mind over matter,” Aikins said.