Rapid Descent is located at the Hannibal Regional Airport in Hannibal, Missouri. Hannibal, situated on the banks of the Mississippi River, offers a stunning view of the area on your skydive. You will be able to see the historic downtown Hannibal, with all of its Mark Twain history. On the western horizon, Mark Twain Lake is visible with all of the surrounding parks and forests. The size and strength of the Mississippi River is also clearly visible on your descent, stretching from Burlington Iowa, through Quincy, Illinois southward to St. Louis, Missouri.
While many pilots are intimidated by parachute operations at an airport, dual operations are actually very safe. All parachutists are briefed on the normal traffic pattern of aircraft and will avoid it. On a normal jump run expect jumpers to exit the aircraft between 12,000 and 14,000 feet above the airport and slightly upwind. Free fall lasts less than one minute until parachute deployment, at which point skydivers are very visible with the colorful canopies. Jumpers will drift down inside the traffic pattern, staying slightly upwind until landing in the drop zone.
Communications are key for safe operations. When flying into Hannibal, make your position known on the CTAF (122.80). All jump pilots will make radio calls on the CTAF when departing the airport. During the climb-out, jump pilots switch to Kansas City Center for flight following on (135.52). You can listen in on this frequency and get updates on our position from the center controller. Jump pilots give center a notification one minute prior to jumpers exiting the aircraft and also announce on CTAF when jumpers leave the aircraft. At this point the jump plane will descend back into the normal traffic pattern and land at the airport.
Transient aircraft are more than welcome to come anytime. Stop in and watch some of the jump operations when getting fuel, and say hello. We will be happy to chat with you!