Quantcast

Extreme Sports Legend Dean Potter Dies

Dean Potter, 43, and Graham Hunt, 29, died on Saturday following a BASE jumping accident in Yosemite National Park. They were attempting a wingsuit flight leaping from a promontory at Taft Point, 3,000 feet above the valley floor.

Potter was a climbing and wingsuit pioneer and creator of  "freebase," a hybrid extreme sport that combined rock climbing without ropes and skydiving.

BASE jumping is illegal in Yosemite and those that attempt it risk being arrested and fined. Potter and Hunt tried to clear a notch in the granite cliffs but missed and smashed into the rocks.

Reports say that the spotter heard a "pop-pop" and assumed it was their parachutes opening, but after she tried to reach them via text and there was no response, she informed park officials of their disappearance. According to park spokesman Scott Gediman, a search-and-rescue operation was launched early Sunday morning, with up to 100 people including park rangers and volunteers surveying the park for the men. Crews in a California Highway Patrol helicopter spotted their bodies on the wall of rock along Yosemite Valley, and both were flown out.

Potter lived in Yosemite with girlfriend Jennifer Rapp and his dog, Whisper. Hunt, who lived in El Portal, California, was described by friend Shawn Reeder as "an amazing soul living a human life to the fullest with humility, love and a shining light that affected most people it shined upon." Reeder said Hunt "was very inspiring" and he now wants to be sure he lives his "life more present in every moment, just like Graham did."

Last year in an interview with Outside, Potter said, "When I was a little boy, my first memory was a flying dream. In my dream, I flew—and I also fell. I always wondered as I got older if it was some premonition of falling to my death." Watch here:

In this video, Potter is Base jumping with his dog:

Potter, one of the most recognized figure in extreme sports, was also renowned for his tightrope walking. Watch this incredible video as Potter is crossing the Enshi Grand Canyon in central China's Hubei province, 1,800 meters above sea level in 2012:

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

7 Facts That Prove the Renewable Energy Revolution Has Arrived

5 Signs the California Drought Could Get Worse

World’s First Solar Road Already Generating More Power Than Expected

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Wesley Martinez Da Costa / EyeEm / Getty Images

By David R. Montgomery

Would it sound too good to be true if I was to say that there was a simple, profitable and underused agricultural method to help feed everybody, cool the planet, and revitalize rural America? I used to think so, until I started visiting farmers who are restoring fertility to their land, stashing a lot of carbon in their soil, and returning healthy profitability to family farms. Now I've come to see how restoring soil health would prove as good for farmers and rural economies as it would for the environment.

Read More Show Less
skaman306 / Moment / Getty Images

By Jillian Kubala, MS, RD

Radish (Raphanus sativus) is a cruciferous vegetable that originated in Asia and Europe (1Trusted Source).

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Tinnakorn Jorruang / iStock / Getty Images

By Dan Nosowitz

The budding research on cannabidiol, or CBD, attracts a great deal of interest in the agricultural field.

Read More Show Less
Oksana Khodakovskaia / iStock / Getty Images

By Jillian Kubala, MS, RD

The loquat (Eriobotrya japonica) is a tree native to China that's prized for its sweet, citrus-like fruit.

Read More Show Less

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) released new numbers that show vaping-related lung illnesses are continuing to grow across the country, as the number of fatalities has climbed to 33 and hospitalizations have reached 1,479 cases, according to a CDC update.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
During the summer, the Arctic tundra is usually a thriving habitat for mammals such as the Arctic fox. Education Images / Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Reports of extreme snowfall in the Arctic might seem encouraging, given that the region is rapidly warming due to human-driven climate change. According to a new study, however, the snow could actually pose a major threat to the normal reproductive cycles of Arctic wildlife.

Read More Show Less
Vegan rice and garbanzo beans meals. Ella Olsson / Pexels

By Alina Petre, MS, RD (CA)

One common concern about vegan diets is whether they provide your body with all the vitamins and minerals it needs.

Many claim that a whole-food, plant-based diet easily meets all the daily nutrient requirements.

Read More Show Less
A fracking well looms over a residential area of Liberty, Colorado on Aug. 19. WildEarth Guardians / Flickr

A new multiyear study found that people living or working within 2,000 feet, or nearly half a mile, of a hydraulic fracturing (fracking) drill site may be at a heightened risk of exposure to benzene and other toxic chemicals, according to research released Thursday by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE)

Read More Show Less