Dec 11, 2006
Disclaimer: Don't try this. Its dangerous - you could be severely hurt or die in a "remote" area and your Mom, wife/husband, rescue/evacuation workers, etc will be pissed. I take no responsibility for your actions.
This is in response to an email I received from Josh Janes.
"...I've dreamed of jumping off that cliff... I'd been reluctant because 1) I've been afraid that maybe it wouldn't be deep enough or that there'd be some underwater obstruction, 2) that I wouldn't be able to find a nearby place to swim to to get out of the water, and 3) that the water would be hypothermically cold!
Tell me the story... I'd love to hear all about it!
Thanks for the email Josh- I decided to post it on here in case anyone else finds it interesting.
I had hiked to Blue Lake once before and my hiking partner told me he'd seen video online of people jumping off this huge cliff on the other side.
On 10/1/05, Wes, Noah, myself and Noah's parents hiked up and checked it out from the other side of the lake. There were a couple other guys hanging out up there and one of them told us he'd done it with buddies many times. He pointed out the perfect spot to jump and told us underwater was safe in all his experiences.
Going off the word of a complete stranger and a rumored internet video (if its on the internet its gotta be true!), we hiked clockwise around to the jump. Coming from that direction, there is direct access to the water. We left our piles of warm clothes, towels, and shoes down in this gully then free-soloed barefoot up 60 feet of ~4th class rock. From here, we looked over the edge and promptly shit our pants. Noah's parents were in photo position on the other side of the lake, we were in position on top of the rock. We actually argued over who got to jump first, Wes took the last cliff on skis so I won this one.
"OK, I'm going. (pause for what felt like 20 years) SEX DRUGS AND ROCK AND ROLL!"
3 seconds later, I splash into the frigidly freezing water. I had landed with my feet slightly in front of my body and my arms straight out to my sides hoping to keep from plunging too deep into the unknown. Good plan, nothing hit solids, but from 50 feet up, my feet and underside of arms were red the rest of the day. Also, with my feet in front, my ass was split wide open by the impact. Felt like getting raped by a fish in Antartica.
At the time, none of this registered though as the adrenaline took over and I frantically swam to my right towards the shore and my clothes. Wes and Noah followed, Noah screamed like a girl the whole way down, we have it on video.
We dried off and dressed up then climbed back to the top for a safety meeting- safety first ;-P. We concluded that the water was so cold, without adrenaline, we would have mentally and physically frozen up and sank like stones.
Of course the water level fluctuates but if you look at the picture and use one of us as a 6-foot measuring stick, we've approximated it at 48 feet. We tell the girls 60+. Scars heal, glory fades, but chicks love extremists!