Happy Winter Skydivers At Skydive Orange

Top Tips for Skydiving in Winter

Tuesday, January 16, 2024

As temperatures drop and the winter frost begins to blanket the world in a frosty glow, adventure doesn’t hibernate. 

At Skydive Orange, we’re determined to turn your winter blues into adrenaline-fueled hues. Can you go skydiving in the winter months? You sure can! Read on for some helpful tips for those who are bold enough to ‘polar bear plunge’ into the crisp winter skies.

Can You Skydive in the Winter?

Yes, indeed! Weather plays a huge role in the comfortability of your skydive and more importantly, must be favorable for parachuting safety. Most people picture skydiving on hot, summery days, but it is absolutely possible to skydive any time of the year depending on where you jump from!

At Skydive Orange, we are open year-round (weather permitting, of course) with a short shutdown from mid-December to mid-January for the holidays. During our winter season (mid-January through March), we are usually open on Saturdays only. 

After the winter season is over, we’re open Saturday and Sunday until we get into the warmer months. Come April, we’re generally open six days a week (Wednesday through Sunday). Our clean, modern facilities are equipped to keep our guests comfortable and happy while on their skydiving journey.

Tandem Skydiver in Freefall at Skydive Orange

Is it Good to Skydive in Winter?

Skydiving in the winter can offer a unique experience. The crisp, clean air that winter brings has a way of opening up the view of our beautiful Earth for miles and miles. 

Besides, winter brings chill vibes to the dropzone in more ways than one! Summertime is the busiest time to skydive due to the warmer climate and the freed-up schedules of eager jumpers. However, there is something special about experiencing a skydive during the downtime at the dropzone. It gives your skydiving adventure a more intimate, calm, and laid-back feeling that you just can’t get during any other season. 

And with fewer folks bustling around, you’re more likely to have deeper conversations with some professional skydivers and instructors if you’re looking to really get into the sport.

Do You Feel Cold Skydiving?

Skydiving can be a bit chilly even on hot, summery days. The temperatures up at altitude are about 30 to 40 degrees cooler than what you feel on the ground. So you can imagine just how cold it would be when you jump out of the airplane from 13,500 feet even on days that seem mild.

If temperatures drop below freezing on the ground, it could be around – 9 degrees Fahrenheit up at jump altitude, which is when you probably shouldn’t skydive. Not only are the temps brutal, but the shivery windchill can make it seem twice as cold! 

The risk of frostbite while skydiving isn’t exactly impossible, but there is a small chance especially if your extremities are exposed to extremely frigid temps for an extended amount of time. While the freefall portion of skydiving lasts about 60 seconds, the five to seven-minute canopy ride back down to the ground can be pretty painful on your exposed hands, cheeks, and ears if you aren’t properly prepared.

Tips for Skydiving in Winter

Dress Warmly!

What to wear while skydiving varies between seasons. Dressing for success is absolutely pertinent to ensuring a safe and comfortable experience as you brave the skies. Here are our top tips for what to wear while skydiving in the winter:

  • Layer Up: Long johns, base layers, thermal underwear; whatever you call ’em, wear those! Dressing in moisture-wicking or wool layers allows you to stay dry and comfortable while on the ground and in the sky. Sometimes you can even find layers that have heat pads inside of them! Ahhh.
  • Gloves: Bring a pair (or two) of windproof gloves to wear to protect your hands from the cold, brisk wind. For licensed skydivers, we suggest neoprene gloves that allow full dexterity (like Neumann or Neff), so you can still operate the canopy and toggles with ease while still protecting your hands. Some skydivers will wear a pair of latex gloves underneath their regular gloves to help block the cold wind.
  • Neck Gaiter (or Buff): Wearing a neck gaiter is the best way to keep your neck and face protected from the brutal winds blasting your face. They also do a great job of keeping your hair safe from the aftermath of 120 mph wind – talk about tangled!
  • Goggles: We’ll provide goggles for all of our tandem students so that no frozen eyeballs or potential debris are blocking your spectacular view of the landscape. If you’re a licensed skydiver, goggles are a must at the minimum! But opting for a full-face helmet might be in your best interest to help add an extra layer of protection from the cold wind for your cheeks, eyes, nose, and head!
  • Cozy Socks & Durable Shoes: Don’t forget to protect those piggies! We recommend wearing high, wooly socks and shoes that are made of windproof materials, like leather rather than fabric shoes for example.
  • Hand Warmers: If you can manage, bring some hand warmers (Hot Hands or Toasty Toes) to put inside of your socks and gloves to add more warmth to your digits.

Note: If you are a skydiver, be sure to practice your EP’s (emergency procedures) while wearing your winter gear to get a feel for the different dexterity with gloves and the restrictions on your arms from bulky gear. Make adjustments if necessary.

How Currency & Repetition Build Confidence in Skydiving | Skydive Orange

Be Patient

Winter brings shorter days and a higher chance of inclement weather and high winds, which means it can require a little bit more planning and patience. If temperatures are too cold, winds are too high, and clouds are too low, we may be forced to reschedule your jump for a day that looks more promising to ensure a safe and comfortable skydive.

We know you’re itching to jump, no need to wait! The best time to skydive is NOW! Book your skydive with Virginia’s premier skydiving center, Skydive Orange. Blue skies!

birthday skydive

Patty McInerney

AMAZING ... EPIC! Great experience with my son to celebrate the big 50!

The largest tandem skydiving center near Northern Virginia, Washington D.C. and Maryland.

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