SKYDIVE New Zealand Fox Glacier

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SKYDIVING Done!!  BUCKET LIST ticked !!! The Free-Fall was like driving a Ferrari without the windscreen !!! 

I have always been talking about doing Skydiving for a long time, but didnt really find the time to do it and lots of other excuses, blah blah blah.  On 5th December 2018, i had finally put a tick on this Bucket List item !!!  And i had done it together with my wife Jacqueline !!!  Also at one of Best SkyDiving spots in the World: Fox Glacier in New Zealand !!! Cherished this adrenalin-filled Skydiving experience forever!  If you have not done skydiving before, you MUST do it !!!!

i googled SkyDiving and was looking at the videos and found that The Fox Glacier was one of the skydiving sites that were mentioned many times over and some even listed Fox Glacier as the Number 1 Choice !!!  Fox Glacier had also been voted The Most Scenic SkyDive in the World in 2016 by TheTravelChannel.com, Escapehere.com and Travelnation.co.uk.  And Lonely Planet says that only Mount Everest could possibly win Fox Glacier for a scenic skydiving experience. Well, My choice was clear:  Fox Glacier because Skydiving at Fox Glacier offers absolutely spectular 360 degrees view from the Snow capped Mountains (Highest Mountains in New Zealand), Glaciers, Snowfields to the beautiful rugged West Coast Sea coastline.

The following is my favourite picture as i jumped out the plane with my tandem dive master at 16,500ft (about 5000m) into the Unknown !!! Soon after the free fall begins, i literally NOSEDIVED with my nose pointing down at a 90 degrees angle to the snow-capped Mountains !!!

My Nose pointing at snow capped mountains. Spot the Fox Glacier in the background!  Free fall at very high speed !!! Your heart will definitely miss a beat or two !!!

Some fun facts about What is a Glacier and The Fox Glacier:

A Glacier is a persistent body of dense ice that is constantly moving under its own weight; it forms where the accumulation of snow exceeds its ablation (melting and sublimation) over many years, often centuries. Glaciers slowly deform and flow due to stresses induced by their weight, creating crevasses, seracs, and other distinguishing features. They also abrade rock and debris from their substrate to create landforms such as cirques and moraines. Glaciers form only on land and are distinct from the much thinner sea ice and lake ice that form on the surface of bodies of water.  A Glacier ( large piece of compressed ice) appears blue, as large quantities of water appear blue. This is because water molecules absorb other colors more efficiently than blue.

Fox Glacier starts up in the mountains in a snow field which is called the Neve (which is big enough to fit Christchurch city). Winding it’s way around 12km down the valley joining up with the rainforest below.  It is very unique as this is one of the only places in the world where a glacier comes through the rainforest.  Like nearby Franz Josef Glacier, Fox Glacier is one of the most accessible glaciers in the world, with its terminal face an easy walk from Fox Glacier Village It is a major tourist attraction and about 1000 people daily visit it during high tourist season.

Having Fox Glacier locked in my “Sniper Scope” as my skydiving site,  i planned my trip to go from Singapore to New Zealand, with a 5-day stopover on Australia.  I ended up having 3 of my Bucket List items ticked.   Hot Air Ballooning and Glacier Ice Climbing and Skydiving !!!.

Jacqueline and i went to a skydiving company named SKYDIVE FOX GLACIER ( http://skydivefox.co.nz ) at Fox Glacier Village. They are the original glacier skydivers since 1997, and has been voted SKYDIVE FOX GLACIER the Best Skydive in New Zealand by Rankers.co.nz.   They had 3 height levels of tandem skydiving:  9,000ft (30 seconds Freefall) NZ$249 , 13,000ft (50 seconds Freefall) NZ$299, and 16,500ft (70 seconds Freefall) NZ$399.

We went for the 16,500ft (70 seconds Freefall) package.  We also paid additional NZ$179 for COMBO which includes freefall photos, freefall video and Skydive Fox t-shirt.  It is all part of the package, 399+179 = NZ$578 per pax for this unforgettable memories !   Pre-booking are required, you can book via their website.

As Fox Glacier is one of the wettest places in New Zealand, it means the weather changes very quickly and is very unpredictable.  We booked to skydive on 3rd December 2018, and it is raining, we eventually did our skydiving on 5th December morning !!!  ( And after we skydived, the 2nd group behind us had their skydiving postponed due to rapid cloud formations.  So, do add a few more days buffer to your itenaries for unpredictable weather ).

On 5th December 2018 morning 9am, we were cleared to go SKYDIVE FOX GLACIER base to gear up and prepare for Skydive !!!  Our Tandem DiveMaster assisted us in putting on our Dive suits and the “funny-looking” helmet.  i put on contact lens so that i can enjoy the beautiful sceneries in the sky!

S.K.Yeo at Skydive base on runways

S.K.Yeo thumbs up and ready to go for his first Skydive !!! Walking on the runway towards the plane for take off…

Jacqueline at Skydive base on runways

Jacqueline, all geared up for her first skydive too !!! With her friendly tandem skydive master !

Skydive Fox Glacier New Zealand plane

This propeller driven plane will take 3 Skydivers with their tandem masters every trip !!!

Magnificent views in the plane as it was climbing up to 16,500sft : Overlooking snow-capped Mount Cook / Aoraki ( Highest Mountain in New Zealand at 12,218ft ) , Mount Tasman , Glaciers and views of the East & West Coasts, including Lake Tekapo and Lake Pukaki. From 16,500ft you will have 70 seconds of freefall at 200 kph (120 mph). Oxygen Masks were given to us to top up our oxygen in our lungs when we reach 10,000ft.

There were 3 skydivers: myself, Jac and British man. I am the first one to FLY !!! The Cabin door opened and my skydive master signalled to me, and i gave a big thumb up !!! My Heart was racing a bit and the 1-2mins will be the Fastest time in my world.

This is the point of NO RETURN : the moment you sit on the edge of the cabin door, there is NO turning back….. INTO the unknown, i fall…  After this, you felt that you are in a fast-forwarded video… SO FAST SO QUICK…

After i left the plane, the initial feeling of Free-fall is an indescribable Sensation!!! Felt the wind gushing in my face and the sound of the wind were very loud in my ears (although my ears were covered by the helmet).  My heart was really above my head.   Zipping through the wind as the acceleration got faster and faster !!!

As we reach stable free fall speed, my arms spread opened like the wings of an eagle.

Speed kept increasing and i really got a Super Face-Lift !!! And i struggled to keep my mouth close.

I was trying to take in the beautiful scenery during my skydive. As i free fall, i kept my thumbs up, telling my dive master that the views were number one !!!

The free fall experience is one that you will remember forever ! The time you soar like an eagle !

The descent was super fast. 70 seconds free fall seems like only a few seconds.

Clouds actually provide a sense of how high you are. i was trying to smile at the camera for many times but was not successful !!!

End of Free-fall! The parachute opened just above the clouds! Jammed on the Brakes. And i have forgotten if i breathed during my free-fall. Nevertheless, this was the time i took a deep breath !!!

As we were parachuting amongst the clouds, the dive master asked me to take out the googles to see more clearly. This is probably one of the few times i can feel and touch the clouds, the cotton wools in the blue sky!  Some pressure were built up in my ear drums while descending at such high speed.

SKYDIVE at FOX GLACIER, New Zealand Finishing Line

Thumbs up again !!! Safely landed. Perfect Landing !!!! Completing my first ever SKYDIVE at FOX GLACIER, New Zealand !!!

Now, it is Jacqueline’s turn to SKYDIVE !!! i think i had already landed on ground !

Seems like millions of thoughts racing in her minds as Jacqueline sat at the edge of the airplane door. One thing for sure, i think she has fixed her smile. !!!

Once you are out of the plane , your REAL SKYDiVE experience begins !

Everything will be getting faster and faster….

Nice Shot !!! SkyDivers and the plane just above them !

FREE FALL started gaining speed

Yippee!!! Jac enjoying every bit of the Skydive free fall. Still maintaining her smile !

Breath-taking views during SKYdive !!!

OMG ! I can FLY !!!

As freefall speed increased, the facelift effect was more obvious! jac was determined to SMILE even at high velocity !!!

Parachute Opened, and the feel of gravity came back briefly !!! Jacqueline looking at her feet stepping on the clouds !

Photo was a bit misty and foggy as Jac skydive through the clouds !!!

Dive Master gave Jac a high velocity Parachute Circling manoeuvre !!!

Happy Jac reaching the finishing line. I was just a small dot in the distance.

Phew! Perfect landing too !!! i was in the yellow dive suit walking towards Jac to congratulate her for doing her first Skydive !

Oh Yeah !!! Thumbs up !!! Many thanks to her SkyDive Master

Double thumbs up!!! We had done our first Skydiving together !!! YEAH !!!!

YEAH YEAH YEAH, We had finally done our FIRST SKYDIVE !!!!  There’s nothing quite like the feeling of Freefall.  I have tried Bungy Jump !  It is definitely 100 times the adrenalin rush !!!  Everyone should give it a go !!!  We only live once.  Life is Short, Just do it !!! Really Cherish this adrenalin-filled Skydiving experience Forever!

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Graduated from National University of Singapore (N.U.S) with a Bachelor of Science Degree ( Passed with Merit ) in 1995. Currently a full time Property Agent with ERA Realty Network Pte Ltd. 12 yrs experience in Real Estate / Property Industry. Hobby: Food, Cycling, Adventure, Travelling.

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