Can you go skydiving in winter? You can indeed! While the practice of jumping out of airplanes is typically pictured as a sunny, summery, fair weather kind of thing, it is entirely possible to skydive during every month of the year – if you go to the right place. The weather conditions do still need to be favorable for parachuting, but there are some solid reasons why skydiving during the winter is a great idea. Here are a few of our top tips for skydiving in winter with examples of why, and some additional tips on getting it right …
Each season of the year has particular positive qualities. There’s the fresh green of spring, the long hot days of summer, and the spectacular sunsets of fall. Winter has crisp, clean air that makes your view of the world bigger and clearer than at any other time of the year. What you see when you are up in the unrestricted sky during your first skydive, can have a profound effect on how you view our big blue-marble home, Earth. Winter time can present skydivers with amazing visuals that add something extra special to the experience.
Dropzones are, no doubt, cool places to hang out. Summer is busiest due to the warmth and the longer daylight hours for jumping. The energy in the air is electric and contagious as everyone either gets hyped for their big moment or is on cloud nine after touchdown.
There’s something to be said for the calmer, quieter times, though – and skydivers regularly spend time at the DZ regardless of the month. (Quite frankly, we like jumping on any day that ends in D-A-Y, all year long.) Some first-time skydivers feel a little overwhelmed with the hustle and bustle of a buzzing dropzone and actually get more out of their experience when things are more laid back. Plus, a quiet dropzone allows you to deepen your engagement with the sport if you’re interested. Skydiving instructors work in the industry because they are passionate about sharing our sport with as many people as they can, and like it all the more when new jumpers are hungry to learn.
To go skydiving when it is cold out, you need to dress appropriately. This means layers. Jumping from a plane is a sport, and athletic wear that covers your whole body will set you up for success.
Closed-toe footwear is essential for skydiving at any temperature, and during winter some wooly socks inside your lace-up shoes are a splendid idea. Gloves are a smart choice, as not only does the air get colder the higher up you go but there is also the wind-chill factor of falling back to earth at 120mph to consider. It’s possible to jump without gloves, just uncomfortable, so plan to bring some with you. The best course of action is to follow your instructor’s example – if they’re rocking gloves, rock yours too! A popular nice-to-have for extra insulation while skydiving is a tube scarf, also known as a neck gaiter. Note: not a traditional scarf. You don’t want anything loose and flappy in freefall.
Skydiving in winter is a bit more of an adventure, but that’s why you want to do it anyway, right? With shorter days and a higher possibility of inclement weather, it can sometimes require a little extra planning and patience.
Cold isn’t the problem, unless it’s straight stay-inside freezing – which isn’t often the case in North Carolina. Just like all other times of the year, wind and cloud cover are the important factors to consider for aircraft and parachutes. If the wind is too strong then flying parachutes is a no-no. And you need to see the ground from the plane to be able to jump at all, so cloud cover will definitely ground you. Winter skydiving has plenty to recommend it though – in our opinion, more than enough to justify the possibility of having to wait or reschedule.
The best time of year to go skydiving is as soon as you can! Once you’ve jumped, you’ll very likely ask yourself why you didn’t do it sooner. Here at Skydive Paraclete XP we have everything you need to get started with skydiving at any time you choose – so what are you waiting for? Book it!