How Stunt Vacations Work

Additional Stunt Activities for the Discerning Adventurer

Bungee jumping lets you experience pure free fall.
Bungee jumping lets you experience pure free fall.
© Van de Wijngaert

Stunt vacation companies certainly aren't the only adventure outfits to offer bungee jumping, zip-lining and tandem skydiving to the fearless. But these high-flying activities constitute just one crazy genre of stunt vacation options.

In case you need a reminder, bungee jumping can be a blood-pumping, 60-mile-per-hour (97-kilometer- per-hour) plummet from 150-plus feet (46-plus meters) to within just a few feet of the ground[source: Thigpen & Blackman]. The only thing keeping you from crashing into the earth below is a big, long rubber band, either attached to your body harness or strapped to your ankles. You can either experience this free-fall stunt sensation by yourself or with another person in a tandem jump. As a solo jumper, two take-off options are available to you. You can either take the plunge with a swallow dive, jumping face first with your arms outstretched, or a back dive, in which you dive in reverse, with the back of your head leading the plunge.

Although it won't allow you to experience the free-fall sensation synonymous with bungee jumping, zip-lining is another exhilarating stunt vacation activity. Once you're strapped into your harness, you'll hook onto a line suspended high above the ground and start your descent. At times, you can reach speeds of up to 100 miles per hour (161 kilometers per hour) [source:]. Soaring over treetops or gorges, you will get a very unique, bird's-eye view of some great natural landscape.

Another offering for those of you unfazed by heights (or, alternately, another nightmare for any acrophobe) is a stunt called tandem skydiving. Tandem skydiving allows you to skip the training necessary to pull off a solo skydive. But don't worry -- you still get plenty of training to ensure a safe and successful jump. You'll experience a free-fall sensation that only skydiving can provide as you drop from between 2.2 and 5.6 miles (3.5 and 9 kilometers) in the air. Your instructor, who is strapped to your rear, decides when to pull your parachute cord and coordinates a safe landing.