Base jumper makes record leap off Jungfrau
A Swiss base jumper set a world record by plunging from a 4,060-metre high peak on the Jungfrau mountain in the Bernese Alps and landing in a valley far below, local media reported this week.
Patrick Kerber, 32, from Uerlikon in the canton of Zurich made the jump on August 11th but waited to release a video of the exploit.
Kerber, who has made 1,800 base jumps and began skydiving at an early age, took just two minutes and three seconds to make the journey from the peak to Lauterbrunnen, at an elevation of 820 metres.
But the vertical drop marks the longest altitude distance — 3,240 metres — ever made by a base jumper, the Blick newspaper reported.
Kerber told website Redbull.com that improvements in wingsuits have made jumps possible that were previously impossible by allowing base jumpers to “fly” at an earlier stage in their freefall.
The adventurer took the Jungfrau railway partway up the mountain with two colleagues.
“After a five-hour climb up through the ice and snow to the peak of the Jungfrau, I realized that there was some steady winds blowing and it took another two hours before I could jump off,” he told Redbull.com.
Kerber said he reached a speed of 200 kilometres an hour and wanted to go “as far as possible,” Blick reported.
He opened his parachute when he arrived above the valley.
“While flying I was perfectly concentrated,” he said.
“And after having landed I just stayed on the grass for an hour,” Kerber said
“I had to digest what had happened.”
More than 30 people have died base jumping in the Lauterbrunnen area of the Bernese Oberland in the past 20 years.
Kerber made his jump just three days before British stuntman Mark Sutton died in the Valais Alps when he crashed into a mountainside after leaping out a helicopter wearing a wingsuit.
Here's the video Kerber of his jump that he posted to YouTube: