Russian adventurer Valery Rozov has become the first person to BASE jump off Mount Kiliminjaro more than 100 years after Hans Meyer first summited the mountain in 1889.
Kilimanjaro is the largest peak in Africa, topping out at 5,895 meters. Although its gentle slopes make it a fairly straightforward climb, a successful BASE jump had never been made from the top.
Rozov made the jump from the mountain’s Western Breach wall, about 400 meters below the summit, using a wingsuit that allowed him to glide for several minutes before deploying a parachute.
Rozov, 50, is an accomplished BASE jumper and wingsuiter with flights made off of several of the world’s tallest peaks, including Mount Everest. But he faced challenges with this jump.
“I prepared for this jump for one year,” Rozov said. “The main problem in searching for the ideal jumping spot was that the wall was not vertical.”
The slowly sloping walls of the mountain made the jump dangerous and left little room for error.
Rozov summited the mountain with a team and spent several days camping in the crater of Kilimanjaro waiting for crummy weather conditions to improve. Clouds clustered at the summit, leaving the team a short window in the morning to attempt a jump.
On the third day, the weather cleared and the jump got the green light. After launching himself off the mountain, Rozov traveled 3km before landing at a popular camp near the bottom of the mountain. A surprise was waiting.
“When I landed there were hundreds of people to meet me,” Rozov told Red Bull Media. “The locals had heard what I was up to and were pretty impressed!”