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A highlight of the boogie was jumping onto Bird Island – photo by Bruno Brokken

Sublime in the Seychelles

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Jumping over Bird Island
Photo by Tom Sanders

Simply stunning skydiving scenery in the spectacular Seychelles

Rich Grimm has done it again, this time hosting the biggest skydiving event in Seychelles history. From 10 – 19 March, 2024, the Tsunami Skydivers Exotic Boogie “Party on the Playa 2024” was held on Praslin Island with the support and co-hosting from Francesco Drosi and Gabor Viczko at Fly Seychelles. Markus Bastuck brought his fantastic Super Caravan and his team of expert pilots from Skydive Saar, Germany to rocket Rich’s team of world class load organizers across all disciplines, packers, manifest, ground control, and 150 participants into the gorgeous skies over iridescent shades of blue and green waters below. It was quite simply, sublime.

Markus Bastuck, Amir Heidel, Toby Fleischmann, Michael Bess and David Clark exiting, photo by Tom Sanders

Complex organization

This boogie was one of the most complex Rich has ever organized. On top of Markus flying his plane from Saar, Germany, to the Seychelles, they had to navigate the Seychelles Civil Aviation Authority to allow Markus to bring his plane into the country and sort out fueling on Mahé. He coordinated 150 particapants on a chartered Catamarn to/from Mahé to Praslin Isand, arranged for everyone to stay at two different hotels along the Côte-d’Or Beach, private bus transportation to get jumpers between the two hotels and from the manifest to the airport on Praslin Island (a 15-minute ride in blissful air conditioning), arranged for six loads and 70 jumps (also with military personnel) from the Seychelles People’s Defence Force Dornier (Do-228), and the highlight of the event, 118 jumps onto Bird Island. In total, there were 39 loads in the Super Caravan for 539 jumps over 5 jump days.

Photo by Bruno Brokken

Bird Island

The Bird Island jumps required extremely detailed planning to ensure the optimal fueling to coordinate the intricate game of leap-frog with multiple loads, two ground control teams, and packers in both locations to support 118 jumpers to fly the 90 km / 56 miles from Praslin to Bird Island over two days. For example, on day 1 the plane flew the ground control and packers to Bird Island early, flew back to pick up load 1 at Praslin Island, dropped load 1 over Bird Island, flew back to pick up load 2 at Praslin Island, dropped load 2 over Bird Island, landed on Bird Island to pick up load 1, then dropped load 1 on Praslin Island, landed on Praslin Island and picked up load 3 for Bird Island. It made me dizzy just typing that. But the spectacular view of an island gem in the middle of a vast blue ocean with nothing around it was stunning. 

Jumping over Bird Island, by Bruno Brokken

Excursions 

As if this wasn’t enough, along with the nightly poker tournament, there were numerous excursions made to other places on Praslin Island to see beaches or the native and highly protected Coco de Mer (Lodoecea) which has the largest seed in the plant kingdom, and the delicious food trucks along the beach. Other destinations included visiting Curieuse Island and seeing the amazing giant tortoises, beaches, and ruins of a leper colony. La Dique Island offered a step back in time as only bicycles are allowed which make it ideal for exploring some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, along with their delightful cuisine and tortoise conservation. Many people took advantage of the top-notch scuba diving in the area, or simply relaxed with the sound of crashing waves and waving palm trees.

17-way, organized by Kate Cooper-Jensen
Photo by Tom Sanbers

Celebration of love 

But wait, there’s more! Before the festivities began with the farewell dinner, the participants shared in the celebration of love that was the marriage of Tom and Heidi Sanders. It was a gorgeous ceremony officiated by Mad John (John Dobleman), including musical accompaniment from Bruno Brokken and Anna Moxnes, with Bruno and Mike Bess also providing photographer duties. The magnficient backdrop of the western Indian Ocean provided an idyllic memory for everyone. Rich kicked off the farewell dinner for all participants and then Bruno and Anna entertained the crowd with a few special guest appearances from Andy Malchiodi, Regan Tetlow, Al Gray, and Casey Pruett. 

The wedding of Tom and Heidi Sanders, photo by Bruno Brokken

The next adventure

Everyone enjoyed a few non-jumping days at the end of the boogie for scuba, excursions, or catching up on sleep. Rich herded everyone (and the endless of sea of luggage) back to Mahé to start their journey back home, or several onto the next skydiving adventure in South Africa for the Tsunami Skydivers Exotic Boogie / SKYFARI 03 – 13 April 2024!







Meet: Casey Pruett

Casey Pruett (USPA D-37244) is an American, living in Germany, and mostly jumps in Belgium at Skydive Flanders or in Spain at Skydive Empuriabrava. He has been jumping for 11 years and loves aerial photography to capture moments to share with others. He also loves flying a wingsuit, attending exotic boogies, and making new skydiving friends wherever he goes.

Casey is proud to be sponsored by SunPath, Atair Canopies, VIGIL, LB, Modern Camera Solutions, Wynd Blocker.

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