Though children are taught to reach for the sky, in time it becomes apparent that jumping out of the sky is more practical. Leap into one of life's timeless lessons with today's Groupon: for $125, you get a tandem skydive from 10,000 feet from Skydive San Diego in Jamul (up to a $209 value).
Skydive San Diego’s USPA-certified instructors whisk thrill-seekers into the sky for exhilarating tandem jumps above gorgeous western scenery. A brief training course outlines skydiving regulations before licensed trainers strap themselves to students with a Sigma Tandem rig. Conjoined twosomes then climb skyward in a Cessna Caravan or DeHavilland Twin Otter spacious enough to stage leaping parties for friends and family interventions for geese refusing to migrate. As planes ascend, cloud surfers can gander at a breathtaking spread of landscapes, skimming their eyes over the Pacific Ocean, downtown San Diego, and the Otay Lake reservoir near the skydive facilities. Once achieving a height of 10,000 feet, divers take the plunge and free-fall for approximately a minute. At 5,000 feet, trainers pull parachutes into bloom, and patrons drift back to earth during a 5- to 7-minute parachute ride. The eventual touchdown at the verdant jump zone, located on the same grounds as the takeoff site, nabs guests a First Jump Certificate and congratulatory smooch from a cloud princess.
The 10,000-foot jumps are scheduled each day at 8 a.m.i ac and 9 a.m., though customers hoping to take a later or slightly elevated tumble can pay $40 extra for a 13,000-foot dive. For an additional fee, Skydive San Diego can also affix a video camera to a trainer's wrist, an outside flier's helmet, or a pterodactyl's steadicam crest to document proof of aerial daredevilry.
Skydive San Diego
To the uninitiated, the dusty, mountainous expanse just north of the Mexico border might sound like a war-torn battleground—it has borne the boots of soldiers in the US Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps. However, the troops simply visited to practice plane evacuations at Skydive San Diego, whose private, skydiving-only airport is buffeted by steady winds and outfitted with state-of-the-art Cessna and DeHavilland jump planes.
Civilians can jump there too, drinking in views of the Pacific before leaping out of an aircraft for solo jumps or tandem dives, in which a USPA-certified instructor is securely attached to the jumper with professional harnesses and a powerful hug. With 8,000 square feet of padded packing area, the full-service facility not only houses an airport but also a deck for barbecuing post-jump feasts.