Skip to Content

BASE Jumping: Articles: Philosophy: Contact the Locals

Contact the Locals

by Earl Redfern

This is an original article belonging to the author. It has not been edited by Basejumper in any way.

The Call the Local Rule

By Earl Redfern

To my fellow BASE Jumpers - I would like to remind you all once again of a long standing tradition which is the single most important method of keeping us out of jail and preventing us from burning objects unnecessarily. This is the “CALL THE LOCAL” rule.

This is how it is supposed to work. As long in advance as possible before going to a new city to jump any object, you should make absolutely sure that you contact the most prominent local jumper in the area. That jumper is then honor-bound to help you by either personally taking you or having someone else take you to as many local sites as possible, training you in the accepted method for access on the particular object and partying with you afterwards. This is “THE WAY”. There is no other way.

I will give you examples here of incidents where this rule has not been followed and several where it was followed. Remember, nothing’s perfect. This is as good as it gets.

Call The Local Rule followed:

I have traveled a great deal and visited many cities in the US and abroad. I always called the local BASE jumper who was acknowledged as being the contact person. I had great experiences.

I made life long friends. I jumped some buildings that no one would have imagined possible, even in their wildest dreams. And I partied with some of the greatest people in the World. When I lived in Atlanta, many people called and unless they had inadequate experience they were taken personally to every building and/or crane that was being jumped and given complete lessons on entry, security, landing, winds and traditions. We partied Georgia style and no jumper paid for a motel; they stayed with one of us.

In 10 years, no person jumping with me in Atlanta got busted. None of the people that I trained got busted except for one stupid jump in the middle of a parade. The newspapers and TV stations never ran a BASE jumping story about anyone who was jumping with me or any of the people I helped initially who called for updates the next time they came to town. It was the golden days of BASE in the Atlanta area. Many buildings were free for the taking with the benefit of years of careful effort by the locals.

This “rule” and the assistance that went with it extended to all the local towers and stacks within a hundred miles as well. Ask Dennis, Brenda, the brothers Rick and Randy, “the ice cream man”, John from Oklahoma, several Australians, several Germans, Rob “Broke Leg” from Canada, Kurt, Brian “the video man” and many, many others about the scene and the hospitality.

Call The Local Rule not followed:

Once we had a horizontal crane that, by providing a case of Bud each night, we arranged for the operator to leave it extended over a huge(100 yd. Square) empty lot. It was at about 700ft. We were putting a dozen people off it every night that the weather was good. Many people did their first BASE jump from this crane. Many people were preparing to do their first BASE jump from it. The police were busy elsewhere and basically uninterested at the time. It was the coolest scene and the crane was there for five more months.

Then along came John with his giant ego. He didn’t call anyone. He got someone to take him up in the middle of the day so he could do his usual self-aggrandizing video jump. Two people, including the crane operator were fired from their jobs. Vincent got away and sent videos of himself jumping the World Trade Center (hop&pop) and others to the Atlanta news media for TV broadcast.

Then he made some smart-ass comment like, what are they going to do, arrest me for stealing altitude? The cops were mad and told to bust us next time. Beers Construction put locks on all their cranes. The first BASE jump students were screwed. The locals were so pissed that they rented a van and drove all the way to New Orleans to “really f**k him up”. John is extremely lucky that I was on the load and came up with the idea to TAR and FEATHER him. Otherwise, he would be without tongue and balls, the original plan.

Call The Local Rule followed:

We had been jumping a South Georgia tower for ten years without incident. We had a key to the elevator and the special sequence to run it. Many people came after calling and were taken to the tower. Some that I really trusted, like Bob “Bromo”, were given keys so they only needed to call to get the “hot or not” report and they were on their own with our blessing. We sometimes did ten jumps in one night from that tower.

Call The Local Rule not followed:

Two very well known BASE jumpers from Florida drove their van inside the tower compound and got busted trying to get the elevator to work. If they had called, we would have boogied all night long.

I could go on and on with these examples and I am sure that many of you could as well. Many sites have been ruined for this reason. When will we ever learn?


Submitted by Earl Redfern on 2007-06-13 | Last Modified on 2007-07-02

Rating: 12345   Go Login to rate this article.  | Votes: 20 | Comments: 3 | Views: 7571

Liked this article? Like us on Facebook and we'll let you know when we have more.

Like Us on Facebook


3 Comments CommentAdd a Comment

 Mordecai7
 More ArticlesArticle RatingsArticle CommentsProfile
 2008-11-06
5 out of 5 stars Well said Earl, BQ
 flygirl8
 More ArticlesArticle RatingsArticle CommentsProfile
 2010-04-15
Hi Earl it has been a long time would like to hear from you please e-mail Mary881919@yahoo.com
 bleeman40
bleeman40
 More ArticlesArticle RatingsArticle CommentsProfile
 2016-06-21
I get it but honestly you guys could of gotten in serious trouble for tar and feathering a person. Kidnapping, Assault, battery, even attempted murder. And if by some chance that man went into shock and died you could be looking at 2nd or 3rd degree murder. You would of done some serious time. Impressionable Young men and woman are reading this. What if they are inspired to do the same? How are you going to feel when a 20 year old kid is facing 20 years in prison because he wanted to fallow your lead? To glorify this behavior is completely unethical. You tortured somebody because your crane got shut down. Do you realize how wrong that is?

Add a Comment