Wingsuited Russian Daredevil Dies in Himalayan BASE Jump
Valery Rozov spent his life pushing the boundaries of what most would consider the unsafe and the insane.
The Russian daredevil made a career of climbing the most difficult mountains—and jumping off.
Wearing a wingsuit—a special webbed garment connecting the arms and legs to the body for greater surface area—Rostov would glide through the air for a minute or two before opening a parachute and floating down to land at an altitude still higher than most mountaineers would ever reach.
However, on Saturday, Nov. 11, Rozov made his final flight.
The 52-year-old daredevil crashed while jumping off Mount Ama-Dablam in eastern Nepal, from a height of 22,349 feet. According to members of his group, Rozov crashed into the side of the mountain.
“Valery Rozov … received international recognition as a highly professional athlete, an aerial adventurer who tirelessly set himself against increasingly difficult goals.
“Valery will always remain in our memory: strong in spirit, professional, modest, full of energy, an eternal dreamer who was forever burning with new ideas and projects.”
Rozov was a pioneer of extreme BASE-jumping—a sport already considered extreme to begin with. BASE jumping—the acronym stands for building, antenna, span, and Earth—usually involves making parachute jumps from extremely low altitudes, like off a skyscraper or a bridge.
Instead, Rozov would jump a few thousand feet off a mountain such as Kilimanjaro or Everest.
Rozov was five-sevenths of the way through his “Seven Summits” quest—to BASE-jump from the highest peak on each of the seven continents—which he began in 2009.
He had completed Mt. Elbrus in Europe (15256 feet;) Antarctica’s Mt. Ulvetanna (8694 feet;) Kilimanjaro in Africa (17913 feet;) Asia’s Cho Oyu, on the Nepal/China border (25262 feet;) and Huascarán in South America (22064 feet.)
He also made a short side trip to Mutnovsky Volcano on Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula to become the first person to jump into the cone of a volcano.
He also found time to climb Mt. Everest and make the world-record highest BASE jump from 23,688 feet.
Not satisfied, in 2016 he climbed Mount Cho Oyu on the Chinese/Nepalese border—itself a 21-day expedition—to set a new record for the highest jump.
“We express our deepest condolences to Valery’s wife and sons, whom he loved and valued very much,” the Red Bull tribute reads.
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