Where did BASE Jumping Come From?

May 17, 2024


BASE jumping, not to be confused with base jumping, is an acronym referring to four categories of fixed objects from which one can jump — building, antenna, span, and Earth. The term was originally used by Carl Boenish in the late 1970s when he and another group of men began jumping and filming jumps made off El Capitan in Yosemite National Park.

When a jumper has completed all four categories, they receive a BASE number. The system began in 1981 with Phil Smith being BASE #1, Phil Mayfield BASE #2, Jean Boenish BASE #3, and Carl Boenish BASE #4. These four are considered the pioneers in BASE jumping. There are currently over 2,000 people with a BASE number, and 444 have perished while BASE jumping as of January 2023.

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Daniel Ganninger - The writer, editor, and chief lackey of Knowledge Stew, the author of the Knowledge Stew line of trivia books, and editor of Fact World and the Knowledge Stew sister site on Medium, our ad-free subscription sites. I hope you learn many new things here that add to your knowledge.

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