Highest Skydive over Everest
Everest Skydive
Everest Skydive Team

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Everest Skydive has come a long way since the first test operation held in May 2008. The team’s enormous level of dedication and the people, who wanted to see this event continue and grow, made it such a huge success. The love and passion of everyone involved has made Everest Skydive one of the most amazing adventures in the Himalaya today. It gives extreme adventure buffs the opportunity to get their names into the international record books and make history by taking a leap with the Everest Skydive team.

Everest Skydive history in brief:


Tandem Total
  members solo
2008(DZ:Syangboche) 41 50 19 69
2009(DZ:Syangboche) 7 7 2 9
2009(DZ:Kala Pathar) 3 3 0 3
Total in 2009 7 10 2 12
2010(Syangboche,May) 10 9 5 14
2010(Syangboche,Oct) 12 15 7 22
Total in 2010 22 24 12 36
2011(DZ:Syangboche) 11 12 4 16
2012(DZ:Ama Dablam) 11 15 0 15
2012(DZ:Syangboche) 15 41 0 46
2013 (DZ: Syangboche ) 14               35 3 38
2014(DZ: Syangboche) 11 6 2 8
Grand Total 179 283 66 349

Everest Skydive First commercial operation 2008 (4-11 October) – Shyangboche Dropzone (1,2350 ft) 

High & Wild, UK and Explore Himalaya Travel & Adventure Everest Skydive 2008 organised the first Everest Skydive at Syangboche (12,350ft) in Solokhumbu District. This unique event drew the attention of millions of people from around the world to the hilly Everest region of Nepal.

Syangboche, the highest drop zone in the world, lies 12 miles southwest of Everest Base Camp and 17.5 miles from its summit. The Everest Skydivers jumped from 29,500ft, which is higher than Everest, which makes the event the “Highest Skydive in the World”.

Flying from above the highest point on earth, amidst magnificent views of the Himalayan peaks, was probably the most thrilling and exciting experience of most of the skydivers’ lives. Following the success of Everest Skydive 2008, the event became a “dream” for many skydivers around the world and it could soon attract more people to Nepal than expeditions to Mount Everest.

The event was covered by more than 500 international as well as national media and media representatives at the drop zone included Kantipur, Avenues Television, Channel 5, UK, etc.

Highlights and International Records – Everest Skydive 2008

Everest Skydive 2008 made it into the record books. The event can be dubbed as the most exciting Himalayan adventure. The skydiving event held the world enthralled as divers hurtled from above the world’s highest peak, freefalling for a few minutes before opening their parachute and landing on the highest drop zone in the world, Syangboche.

The major highlights and list of the world records made during the event are as follows:

1. Skydiving event from the highest altitude ever – 29,500ft, above Everest

2. Highest drop zone in the world – 12,350ft, Syangboche

3. The first skydiving event held in the Himalaya

4. The first skydiving event with  41 skydivers doing 50 solos and 19 tandem jumps from a height of 29,500ft, 22,500ft, 22,000ft, 19,000ft, 18,500ft and 18,000ft

5. The only skydiver with the highest number of solo jumps made from above 22,000ft – Wendy Smith of New Zealand, with nine solo jumps (including eight jumps from 29,500ft and one from 22,000ft)

6. First person to summit Mt. Everest as well as skydive in front of Everest – Maya Gurung (Nepal)

7. First solo diver of the event – Wendy Smith (New Zealand)

8. First tandem jump – Lucie Fenton (UK) & Tom Noonan (USA)

9. First Iraqi to make a solo jump from 29,500ft – Fareed Lafta

10. First Swedish to make a solo jump from a height of 29,500f t- Herman S. Duscher

11. First Danish to make a tandem jump from 29,500ft – Per Wimmer

12. First South African to make a solo jump from 29,500ft – Adolphe Botha

13. First Belgian to make a solo jump from an altitude of 29,500ft – Christophe De Pauw

14. First Asian and Pakistani to make a tandem jump from a height of 29,500ft – Namira Salim

15. First Nepali to make a tandem jump from 22,000ft – Nima Tamang

16. First Nepali woman to make a tandem jump from 22,500ft – Maya Gurung

17. First Arab to make a solo jump from 29,500ft – Naseer Alneyadi

18. First Canadian to jump from a height of 29,500ft – Neil Jones

19. First father & son duo to make tandem jumps from a height of 29,500ft during the same event – Scott & Lou Diesel from the USA

20. First British woman skydiver to make a solo jump from a height of 29,500ft – Holly Budge

21. First American solo jumper of the event – Omar Alhegelan

22. First Australian to make the highest (29,500ft) tandem jump – Steve Hennessey

23. First person with gender reassignment (from male to female) to make the highest tandem jump (29,500ft) – Kate Craig-Wood (UK)

24. Two World Champions, Omar Alhegelan from the USA and Ms. Wendy Smith from New Zealand took part as members of the Crew team.

25. Jumps made between the heights of 18,000 to 29,500ft.

26. Ms. Holly Budge (UK), Neil Jones (UK) and Wendy Smith (New Zealand) were the first three solo jumpers to jump from the height of 29,500 ft.

27. Per Thanning Wimmer from Denmark (millionaire) was the first to make a tandem jump as passenger from the height of 29,500ft along with Ralph Mitchell, a British Tandem Master.

28. Molly Anne Bedingfield, founder of the charity mission “Global Angeles”, and mother of famous pop singers Natasha and Daniel Bedingfield, made a tandem jump from 29,500ft to raise US $ 1 million for the charity that helps orphanages and street children from all over the world, including Nepal. She had already raised US $ 300,000 till date.

29. The Pilatus Porter Aircraft of Swissboogie operated 22 flights in total. The aircraft was specially flown in from Switzerland.

30. Twenty-two trekking members joined the trip as observers.

31. All the jumps were planned and regulated by the team of Dave Wood from the UK.

32. The famous British aeronautical scientist, Andy Elson developed a special oxygen system for this event. Elson is also well known for flying over Everest in a hot air balloon in 1990.

33. All clothes, including the jump suits, were made in Nepal. Rajen Dulal is a young entrepreneur, who has workshop in Thamel.

34. The British television company, “Channel 5” made a film about the event and had a daily live-link. The BBC, TV3 New Zealand, Australian Television, Al Jazeera, CNN and other TV stations also covered the event.

35. Everest Sky Dive 2008 has become the most widely covered and publicized tourism event by international media, after the Golden Jubilee Celebration of the First Ascent of Mt. Everest in 2003.

36. Everest Skydive hit the international tourism market as a brand-new and most remarkable product from the Nepalese Tourism Industry.

37. International tourism experts believe that Everest Skydive will bring more people to Nepal in future than expeditions to Everest.

38. Everest Skydive 2008 is a milestone in the history of Everest – after its first ascent by Tenzing and Hillary in 1953.

39. More than 100 Nepalese were involved in making this event happen. Fishtail Air helicopters were on standby for rescue operations during the event.

Names of Skydivers – Everest Skydive 2008

SN Name Country Jump(Solo/Tandem) Remarks
1 Wendy Smith New Zealand Solo Crew
2 Lucie Fenton UK Tandem With tandem master Tom Noonan
3 Tom Noonan (USA) Tandem Crew
4 Omar Alhegelan USA Solo Crew
5 Steve Hennessey Australia Tandem Crew
6 Nima Tamang Nepal Tandem With tandem master Steve Hennessey
7 Cheri Alhegelan USA Tandem With tandem master Ralph Mitchell
8 Ralph Mitchell UK Tandem Crew
9 Neil Jones Canada Solo  
10 Chris Parsons UK Solo  
11 Derek Thomas USA Solo Crew
12 Holly Budge UK Solo  
13 Ryan Jackson UK Solo Crew
14 Adolphe Botha South Africa Solo  
15 Thomas Laurie Hinds UK Solo  
16 Carrie Holmes USA Solo  
17 Maya Gurung Nepal Tandem With tandem master Tom Noonan
18 Fareed Lafta Iraq solo  
19 Christophe de Pauw Belgium Solo  
20 Peter Baker UK Tandem With tandem master Steve Hennessey
21 Martin Preston UK Solo  
22 Molly Beddingfield UK Tandem With tandem master Ralph Mitchell
23 Namira Salim Pakistan Tandem With tandem master Tom Noonan
24 Dean Edwards UK Solo  
25 William Thomason New Zealand Tandem With tandem master Steve Hennessey
26 Derek Cornelius UK Tandem With tandem master Ralph Mitchell
27 Ron Hudson USA Tandem With tandem master Steve Hennessey
28 Howard Shao USA Tandem With tandem master Ralph Mitchell
29 Herman S.Duscher Sweden Solo Solo
30 Djuan Rivers USA Tandem With tandem master Steve Hennessey
31 Kate Craigwood Uk Tandem With tandem master Tom Noonan
32 Jane Dougall Uk Tandem With tandem master Ralph Mitchell
33 Harold Watkins Uk Tandem With tandem master Steve Hennessey
34 Darren Thatcher Uk Tandem With tandem master Tom Noonan
35 Naseer Alneyadi UAE Solo Solo
36 Per Wimmer Denmark Tandem With tandem master Ralph Mitchell
37 Lou Diesel USA Tandem With tandem master Steve Hennessey
38 Scott Diesel USA Tandem With tandem master Tom Noonan
39 Simon Repton UK Solo  
40 Mark Finch UK Solo Crew
41 Leigh Pretty UK Solo  

Everest Skydive 2008 Closing Ceremony- 14th October, 2008

The closing ceremony for Everest Skydive 2008 took place at the Nepal Tourism Board (NTB) on 14 October 2008. NTB hosted the function and saw the attendance of the crew and members of Everest Skydive, dignitaries and officials from the Ministry of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation, tourism entrepreneurs, media persons and the staff of Explore Himalaya and Fishtail Air. The chief guest was Mr.Prachanda Man Shrestha, CEO, Nepal Tourism Board. Mr. Suman Pandey, President of Explore Himalaya, delivered the welcome speech. In his welcome address, he mentioned the major highlights of Everest Sky Dive 2008.  Nigel Gifford, Managing Director of High & Wild UK and founder of Everest Sky Dive also spoke on the occasion. He expressed his gratitude to the Government of Nepal and all concerned for making the event happen.

An incredible aerial video footage taken by Wendy Smith, Director of Aerial photography, of the Everest Skydive, was shown at the end of the program.

The closing ceremony also had Molly Bedingfield, founder of the international charity, “Global Angles,” and a tandem jumper during the event, announcing a donation of US $ 2,00,000/- to ‘The Childrens’ Home Orphanage’ located in Khokana, Lalitpur.

For more details on Everest Skydive History, please go to Everest Skydive Archive.


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