Last weekend I spontaneously drove across the Mojave desert with Bogart the foster dog to visit my Aunt and Uncle in Phoenix. Nothing too extraordinary. Growing up in the South where trees and grass dominate the landscape like love letters to Justin Bieber’s mailbox, it still fascinates me to drive through the desert. I usually drive at night to avoid the notorious LA traffic. But this time I drove there and back during daylight, with my camera and a 50mm lens.
Bogart was a great co-driver. He pointed out all the squirrels.
Just so California could remind every driver on the I-10 that they care about the environment, they set up 3,100 turbines near Palm Springs. An amazing spectacle, and would be interested in knowing how many rear-ending-rubbernecking car accidents happen because of them.
Rows and rows and rows and rows of turbines.
They almost look like trees from very far away.
5:00 AM next morning I head out with my adrenaline junkie buddy Matt Frohlich from South Carolina (who goes to helicopter school in Phoenix) to base jump off of Superstition Mountain. Me? I was just along for the ride for a good hike and take some pictures 🙂
We park and start the 2hr hike to the top of Superstitious (the jumping point framed in the background).
An Arizona sunrise is about as good as it gets.
For a brief moment I felt like I was delivering some ring to some volcano.
Once the sun rises the rock looks even more menacing.
Rule #1 when going anywhere in Arizona: Bring plenty of H2O.
Matt looking EXTREMELY nervous to be doing his 800-some-odd jump off a big rock.
Rule #2 when going base jumping: Bring a friend. Rule #1? Open your chute.
Finally reaching the top, Scott and Matt do a wind check to see if it’s safe to jump.
Yep, it’s safe. Tie your shoes tight and get ready. Rule #24 of Base Jumping: Strap a video camera to your helmet so you can impress the ladies on youtube.
One last survey before descending over 1000 feet in a little over 1 minute… hopefully not any less than that.
For Matt, base jumping is more safe than driving down a highway, so I wasn’t very worried about picking up any body parts. In fact later in the day we did an impromptu photoshoot near Camelback Mountain of another base jump. Look for the edited shot very soon. After the shoot, and jump, I had just enough time to snap off an incredible sunset over downtown Phoenix. One day I’ll sky dive… and dare I say, one day have enough confidence to jump off 1000′ tall rocks? That’s a damn good way to get over my fear of heights.