Skydiving has become increasingly popular in Iowa and some are even calling Knoxville, Iowa the skydiving capital of the world. Skydiving is the process by which a person jumps out of an airplane and completes maneuvers in the sky while free-falling, before landing with a parachute. It is a popular sport in the United States and according to the United States Parachute Association, in 2021, almost 40,000 people accounted for over 3.5 million jumps. If you are thinking of traveling to Iowa for an incredible skydiving experience, we have done some research for you and have gathered everything there is to know about skydiving and the best places for skydiving in Iowa.
History of Skydiving
Falling from the sky dates as far back as the 1100’s in China where, according to Sky Diving Melbourne, people would jump from cliffs and float their way to the ground on parachutes they made themselves. Then, in 1797, a man made a parachute out of a canvas and a small basket tied under a hot air balloon. Finally, in 1919 the earliest competitive skydives that are recorded began to take place. Now, skydiving is a popular sport that happens all over the world with modern parachutes that have the latest and greatest technology. It has even evolved so much that militaries have used skydiving as part of their military training.
Although it is an extreme sport that people are attracted to for different reasons, people still need to take precautions when participating in it. To help, we have gathered some tips on what to look for and what to expect when planning to skydive.
What To Look For and What to Expect When Planning to Skydive
Find The Right Dropzone
When looking for a place to skydive in, you will find that skydiving locations are considered drop zone. A drop zone can be any size and provide different services in different ways. For example, some drop zones may be too busy to provide you with the appropriate quality training and others might not offer the specific type of freefall experience you are looking for. To get the best feel for the dropzone you are looking at, you can call ahead or visit before planning your skydive.
You will also notice that certain drop zones will be members of the United States Parachute Association. Drop zones become members of this association by joining a membership service that is dedicated to providing the safest skydiving experience. The United States Parachute Association is always working to promote and recommend the best procedures on how to practice a safe skydive experience. You can ensure that the dropzone you are looking at is practicing the latest safety recommendations by making sure they are members of the United States Parachute Association.
Best Aircraft For Skydivers
Not all planes provide the optimal experience you might be looking for to skydive. Experienced jumpers recommend a large turbine aircraft to skydive. This is because these airplanes allow you to get to altitude faster than other planes, meaning you will reach your skydive experience a lot quicker. Additionally, these planes offer a more comfortable ride and fit more people, which is perfect for those that are wanting to skydive at the same time as their friends or family.
What Gear Will You Need to Wear?
While most dropzone locations will have all of the gear for you ready to go, it is a good idea to do some research ahead of time and know what to expect when you do go skydiving. First of all, you will wear a helmet specifically made for skydivers. There are two different types of helmets, some are called hard hats and some are called soft hats. As you can probably guess, hard hats are more durable than soft hats.
Aside from helmets, you will also be wearing a parachute. Parachutes are essential to your skydiving experience as it is what help you float. All parachutes are different and while some people choose to buy their own, you may still be able to get one at your dropzone location. The one thing to look for is to make sure that your parachute comes with a reserve parachute as well. This is important in the event that the main parachute malfunctions and that you are relying on the automatic activation device to release the reserve parachute. The automatic activation device is programmed to activate based on the speed at which the skydiver is falling and at which altitude so this piece of equipment is rather important. You may also feel better knowing that you are flying with this device ready to be triggered, should anything go wrong.
Another piece of equipment that you may find useful as a first-time skydiver is an altimeter. An altimeter makes divers aware of the altitude at which they are flying so that they know when the perfect time is for them to release their parachutes. Some dropzones may have altimeters available for you, but you may also purchase one independently if you like.
The last piece of equipment that you will need is goggles. Without goggles, skydivers are unable to see while they are freefalling and will also not have protection for their eyes. You may find specific skydiving goggles that differ in price available for you to buy.
Different Places to Skydive in Iowa
There are two places that are available for skydiving in Iowa. One of them is called Des Moines Skydivers and the other one is called Skydive Iowa. Both are USPA regulated and are up to date on the latest safety standards. Let’s review some of the services they offer and what the prices are for said services.
Des Moines Skydivers
Des Moines Skydivers located in Iowa offers different services including tandem skydiving on a turbine aircraft and tandem skydiving on a piston plane. You may even purchase certain packages that include video and photography included. Additionally, they even offer skydiving classes at their dropzone. While they currently do their skydiving in Des Moines, they are in the process of moving over to Knoxville, Iowa. If you are wanting to gift a skydiving experience to someone you know, you may even purchase a gift certificate on their website. Experienced jumpers may even may a membership and join their club for access to showers, student gear rental, refrigerator, and microwave, heated bathrooms, creeping area, and coaches.
Price for Tandem Skydiving – $280
Price to get an A-certified license to learn to skydive – $2500-$3000
Google Reviews – 5 Stars out of 185 Reviews
Address – Winterset-Madison County Airport
3405 N 8th Ave
Winterset, Iowa 50273
Phone Number – 515-243-1711
Email – email@example.com
Skydive Iowa is located in Brooklyn, Iowa, and also offers tandem skydiving at its facilities. They also provide training for people who are looking to begin skydiving on their own. For those of you who are looking at gifting a skydiving experience, gift certificates are also offered by Skydive Iowa. Finally, you may also purchase a photography and video package from them to capture your entire Skydive Iowa experience.
Price for Tandem Skydiving – $270
Google Reviews – 4.8 stars out of 182 Reviews
Address – 1922 US Hwy 6
Brooklyn, Iowa 52211
Phone Number – 515-598-6329
Email – Skydiveiowa@hotmail.com
Finding a great place to skydive in Iowa is not difficult considering the great reviews that both Des Moines Skydivers and Skydive Iowa have. They are both safe facilities to experience your first jump experience and both have the latest equipment available for you to use and to train with to ensure that your safety is the top priority. Additionally, both facilities offer great customer service and have earned valuable reviews on Google based on the customer’s great flying experiences. Don’t waste your time looking for other places to skydive, and be sure to consider one of these locations when visiting Iowa.