What's it like to fly like a bird? Few people know better than the members of the Red Bull Air Force. Whether it's leaping off the Eiger in Switzerland, or soaring over high mountain roads in China, this is some of the coolest (and closest) proximity flying we've seen yet.
Pilot Mike Swanson has done over 1,000 wingsuit flights, and over 300 proximity flights, making him one of the best human flight pilots in the world. So what (other than the close calls) makes a proximity flight different than a normal skydive?
“There's just a lot more preparation,” he says. “At a drop zone, you might focus on routine, what tricks you're doing in the air – with proximity flying, there's a lot more details about the spot, the line, the conditions. In typical skydiving, you can deal with high winds and adverse conditions – in proximity flying, you can't get away with that.”
Above, we've compiled POV footage from wingsuit flights all over the world, through "The Crack" in Switzerland to snowy Jungfrau, also in Switzerland, where the wingsuit flyers carve around slate-gray rock face, to Chamonix in France. The video ends with Tianmen Mountain in China and follows the skydivers as they land on the area's unique curvy roads.