Extreme climber and BASE jumper Dean Potter dies following Yosemite base jumping accident. If you have ever seen videos of Dean Potter and his dog Whisper flying through the air in a wingsuit, you will know the dangerous jumps that Dean Potter is famous for. Sadly, Dean Potter died on Saturday doing what he loved to do. According to accounts, on Saturday evening, May 16, BASE jumpers Dean Potter and Graham Hunt died after attempting a wingsuit flight from Taft Point, a 7,500-foot promontory that overlooks Yosemite Valley and El Capitan. On Sunday, a state police helicopter was able to spot both bodies from the air. They found that no parachutes had been deployed.
I cant even imagine doing anything like this. Rest in Peace Dean, we sadly lost some one who believed not only in pushing the limits, but pretty much thought there were no limits, unless he felt the jump or climb was wrong. Don’t worry, Whisper was not with Dean Potter on his last base jump. Dean Potter is survived by his girlfriend Jennifer Rapp and his dog, Whisper, a blue heeler.
From National Geographic – Dean Potter BASE Jumps With His Dog Whisper … When Dogs Fly
After years of risky climbing, he began the even more treacherous sport of base jumping, which involves leaping off of cliffs and other high-up structures and waiting till the last possible moment to deploy a parachute.
In the end, Potter’s recurring dream proved prophetic: Saturday evening he died in a base jumping accident at Yosemite National Park. He and a fellow jumper were found dead below Taft Point, a 7,500 foot cliff overlooking the park’s famous valley. Their parachutes were never deployed.
For years, Potter had toed the line between deadly falls and impossible flight.
“I know it’s insane to think that I could fly,” Potter told ESPN. “But to make it possible, you truly have to believe in it — to go to a place that’s not accepted.”
On Saturday evening, May 16, BASE jumpers Dean Potter and Graham Hunt died after attempting a wingsuit flight from Taft Point, a 7,500-foot promontory that overlooks Yosemite Valley and El Capitan.
Potter has been a fixture on the climbing and BASE-jumping scene in Yosemite since the late 1990s. According to Yosemite chief of staff Mike Gauthier, the pair made the jump late Saturday. Their spotter heard two sounds that could have been impacts or could have been the noises made by parachutes snapping open. She followed standard protocols, first trying to reach the pair by radio, with no luck, and then moving to a predetermined meeting place. “They were optimistic, thinking that the men might have been arrested,” says Gauthier. BASE jumping is illegal in Yosemite National Park.
Yosemite Search and Rescue (YOSAR) initiated a hasty search, but the rangers were unable to locate the pair overnight. Potter and Hunt had been attempting to fly along terrain that required them to clear a notch in a rocky ridgeline. “It’s kind of a trickier flight to go through this notch,” Gauthier says. On Sunday morning, a state police helicopter was able to spot both bodies from the air. No parachutes had been deployed. Two rangers were then airlifted to the site to perform the recovery.
Survivors include Potter’s girlfriend Jennifer Rapp and his dog, Whisper, a blue heeler who has played a prominent role in Potter’s adventure life for the past few years.