In a bizarre stunt that was meant to go down in history as one of the greatest daredevil adventures of all time, a parachutist attempted to jump from the Devils Tower Monument in northeast Wyoming. Unfortunately for the parachutist, the stunt took an unexpected turn and left the brave man with regrets.
On Friday, 28-year-old Joshua Wilson arrived at the national monument with a goal of completing the first ever parachuting stunt from the Devils Tower. Though the 867-foot tall monolith may seem like a picturesque backdrop for an extreme feat of athleticism, in this case it almost spelled disaster for Wilson.
Louis Jackson, a local at the monument reported that Wilson had parachuted from an aircraft several times earlier in the day, but each time the wind rushed through Devils Tower’s enormous spires with such force that Wilson was unable to land safely. Not wanting to give up his mission yet, the experienced parachutist made a second attempt and despite wind gusts topping 110 km/h, he jumped from the aircraft.
The wind was too strong, however, and the gusts played havoc with Wilson’s parachute, causing him to plummet nearly 200 feet towards the rocky base of the tower. Thankfully, experienced ground crew were able to deploy an emergency canopy, slowing his descent and enabling Wilson to land more-or-less safely.
It is believed that while Wilson had completed a number of skydives from aircraft prior to his attempt, he had never parachuted from such a great height before. Wilson was later taken to the local hospital for examination, but thankfully suffered no major injuries.
Though some may have found the stunt thrilling, Wilson later offered his regrets for the attempt, saying “At the time, I wanted to conduct what I thought would be a great feat and make history. But after I landed safely and was able to reflect on what I did, I realized my mission was foolish, dangerous, and could have resulted in worse outcomes than it did. I regret this stunt and will not be performing any further such stunts in the future.”
It is unclear at present if Wilson will be subject to prosecution for his stunt, however a spokesperson for Devils Tower National Monument said that they would review the incident and respond accordingly.