The plane at Great Lakes Skydiving is something of a celebrity—in the '90s, 20th Century Fox used it to shoot the skydiving scenes in Point Break. This was no stroke of luck. The center's dives are truly cinematic, taking place at a breathtaking elevation of up to 14,000 feet. The spacious facility is also stocked with state-of-the-art equipment, and staffed by a team of certified instructors who helm tandem dives for newbies.
Sportations connects amateur adrenaline jockeys to certified professional adventurers, drawing from a nationwide network of aeronauts and speed demons to introduce habitual pedestrians to the wonders of skydiving, ballooning, hang gliding, and stock-car racing. Thrill seekers can zipline across a forest canopy, hollering like Tarzan or taunting nearby birds until they agree to race. Helicopter tours ferry patrons skyward over landmarks and cityscapes, whereas paragliding adventures get up close and personal with blue skies and clouds. For most sports, Sportations accommodates groups of any size, from physics classes empirically proving gravity's existence to solo ballooning supervillains declaring dominion over all they see.
Skydive the Rock pairs thrill-seekers or bucket-listers looking to leap out of an airplane with skilled instructors who know exactly how to do it. Jumpers will start off with a 20-minute training session, then are placed into a harness before taking to the skies. With a USPA certified instructor, they'll board a turbine aircraft to a breathtaking height of 14,000 feet. Once there, they'll exit the plane and enjoy an adrenaline-filled freefall for roughly 60 seconds. Jumpers have the option of opening their own chutes, but the instructor is always present as a backup. Once the parachute is opened, thrillseekers take in the scenery during a 3- to 5-minute descent back to earth, which can be as wild or mild as desired.