Russian base jumper flies from 7,700m in the Himalayas for a world’s first.
There are people who like the comfort of their living room – and then there are people who just can’t help but break world records, over and over again. Skydiving and BASE-jump legend Valery Rozov definitely falls into the second category.
For three years, the Rozov had dreamt of base jumping off the Himalayan mountain Cho Oyu, the sixth highest peak in the world. And for 21 days, Rozov battled to his take-off point before pitching himself off a ledge at 7,700 metres and spiralling to the ground for 90 seconds in what is a world first in the discipline.
It was also a world record – although unratified – for base jumping, breaking the previous highest mark of 7,220m set by Rozov himself in 2013 from Changtse in the Everest Massif.
For the 51-year-old, it proved a particularly poignant expedition, which he dedicated to renowned climber and close friend, Alexander Ruchkin, who died tackling a climb in Peru last year.Three years ago, Rozov and Ruchkin had been climbing together when the idea was born.
“Now that I’ve pulled it off I’m very happy I was able to make this jump not because it’s a world record or because it’s a personal athletic achievement for me but also as commemoration for my late friend Alexander Ruchkin with whom we were scouting locations for this jump three years ago.”