Tandem BASE Jumping Growing in Popularity
Twin Falls, Idaho ( KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV )
"I moved here from San Diego just for the bridge. I didn't know anyone up here, I just wanted to jump all the time."
Since performing the first tandem BASE jump off the Perrine Bridge around 4 years ago, Sean Chuma has seen business take off.
Says Chuma, "I'm very excited about it because in the beginning it was experimental; everyone was really scared about it. We decided to do it and now that everyone is starting to hear about it I feel more comfortable. I've done above 280 now."
Shawn Barigar of the Twin Falls Chamber of Commerce adds, "Looking back 15 years or so we saw some BASE jumpers come to town, it wasn't as widespread. It's a pretty narrow audience that participates but as the community embraced those folks we see more coming. Now we see more adaptations of the sport to tandem BASE to other extreme sports and it really has put us on the map."
Chuma estimates he's has 50 tandem jump students in the past year.
More media attention has increased desire from new participants.
Says Chuma, "It's definitely gets more popular as we do more television shows. The word gets out and we've been traveling around the world and doing BASE jumps off different objects. A lot more people are hearing about it and becoming more easy with it."
Barigar adds, “it's also the social media that has really driven it. The guys who go out and participate always have a camera they are posting and we always get a lot of inquires from people about this."
A growing sense of adventure in the Magic Valley.