I have no record of the 7 deaths at Yosemite from BASE jumping that Somke referred to….only these 4:
In 1982 Jimmy Tyler, tried a jump off the face of Half Dome. He did it on a cloudy day with a slight wind. The breeze put him into the wall.
In 1988 Mitch Reno did the same and delayed opening his chute and impacted the talus just as his chute was rolling out.
In 1993, when Susan Oatly, jumped off El Cap. She held her head skyward for too long, lost altitude awareness, and backed into the wall in her 15th second of freefall. This jump began the process of insisting people who begin BASE jumping have at least 150 previous parachutes jumps.
The jump that ended it all was in 1999 when 5 jumpers planned a protest jump off El Cap in front of Park Rangers and the media. Jan Davis was the third to go off while her husband down below filmed it. By prior arrangement, Park Service officials agreed not to prevent the jumps but insisted jumpers would be arrested upon landing and their gear would be confiscated. It’s not against the law to talk about jumping – only the actual jump is a violation. This caused some jumpers to switch to their “B” gear. Jan jumped a system with an older style leg mounted pilot chute pouch when she was used to jumping a pilot chute stowed in a chest pouch. After a normal delay she instinctively reached for the bottom of the container and after failing to find the pilot chute handle ran out of time before figuring things out.
Unrelated thought worth quoting: “Well it’s too bad that our friends can’t be with us today. Well it’s too bad. The machine that we built would never save us! (That’s what they said.) That’s why they ain’t comin’ with us today. And they also said it’s impossible for a man to live and breathe underwater. Forever was a main complaint. Yeah and they also threw this in my face, they said: Anyway, you know good and well it would be beyond the will of god and the grace of the king. Grace of the king.” – continuing 1983 (A Merman I Should Turn To Be) – Jimi Hendrix
*MrHalfDome™ – Rick Deutsch – www.HikeHalfDome.com