Jessica has her eyes in the sky. Always learning how to challenge fear while balancing inner truths, she’s likely advocating for Sky Divers and BASE Jumpers all over.
“Embrace imperfections. It’s what makes this crazy life beautiful. “
Arêt Since: 2017 | Location: California | Trade: Bartender | Basewear: Low Cut Neptune
Your TOURA of choice?
The Low Cut TOURA in Neptune is my favorite, but honestly, how can you pick one color? The Orchid and Mars are beautiful colors as well. The Low-cut TOURA is my favorite because the cut is flattering.
I am apart of the itty bitty titty committee, and more often then not, sports bras can make me look like I have nothing there. The low-cut is girly and flattering, yet totally functional and comfortable. I can fall asleep in this bra and it never bothers me.
What is your favorite view, glimpse, or moment when in the outdoors?
My favorite moment when I’m outdoors is when I’m geared up and standing at the edge of a cliff. Base jumping takes me to some of the most beautiful locations in the world, but in this moment on the edge, there are no words to describe how beautiful the landscape looks to me before I jump.
What is a modern-day issue or struggle regarding the state of our outdoor spaces that you are particularly passionate about?
I have a few. First, plastic pollution and the toll it’s taking our environment. I live in Salt Lake City, Utah and the Rocky Mountains are 30 minutes from where I live. It doesn’t take long to get out of the city and away from pollution.
However, the plastic crisis we are having is not as visible in the mountains, and unfortunately, this issue can be easily overlooked by people who do not have to deal with it intimately.
Nothing is more moving than seeing the issue up close and personal. When I traveled to Panama many of the beaches were littered with plastic, but the most common item I saw washed ashore where CROCS. These horrible shoes would be piled by the hundreds. All it takes is a little bit of traveling to see how much of an issue plastic and littering is.
Five things to eliminate your plastic use:
- Shop at your farmers market to stop purchasing produced packaged in plastic
- Use reusable food ware such as cloth or stainless containers
- Choose plastic-free pet-care such as litter
- Choose plastic-free body care
- Stop buying plastic water bottles
You’re pretty passionate about the state of BASE jumping in the united states and National Parks. Tell us more, and how we can get involved:
Outside of the United State base jumping is legal and in many locations, you pay a fee to an association much like paying an entrance fee at a National Park in order to jump. The law on base jumping in the UnitedStates is an outdated law written in 1965. The law is on “Illegal AerialDelivery”. It was written in order to prevent the resupplying of squatters in National Parks via planes or parachutes. Now, the law is applied to any form of parachute activity.
The dynamic this puts on base jumps can be fatal. It means jumpers are jumping in limited light, rushing to stay away from rangers, and jumpers will use old gear in fear of having their gear confiscated.
The reality is that base jumping is no more invasive on the environment than hiking, and with climbers like Alex Honnold, free climbing in Yosemite the risk of fatality is arguably more dangerous than base jumping. Year after year, there are serious traumatic rock climbing injuries in National Parks and these athletes are performing under no legal pressure.
If you feel that base-jumping should be legal and equalized you can write a letter and send it to me!
This letter will be sent with others from the community. The letter can be anonymous. Please still introduce yourself, share your story, and who you are, why it’s important to you, etc. Take a positive stance. Avoid anti-authority attitudes, negative tones, or arguing current laws on BASE jumping.
We all deserve to play in the National Parks. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org
What is the biggest mental hurdle you face when skydiving?
It’s interesting because the mental hurdles you face in skydiving are often parallel with those in your everyday life. My biggest mental hurdle in skydiving has been matching my confidence with my skill level.
There’s a fine dance between pushing yourself and staying safe in the sky, and its always evolving and changing for me.
Does fear creep into the back of your mind? How do you deal with that?
Every. Single. Jump. Fear is healthy. Fear keeps you alive. You just have to learn what type of fear you’re dealing with. There’s good fear and bad fear. Good fear is the kind of fear that happens when you’re trying something new like.. a new route your leading, a new ski line, or the first time you jumped off a diving board as a child.
That’s good fear. That means you’re human!
I personally manage that by acknowledging it, focusing on my breathing, and trusting my training. If I am sensing bad fear such as; marginal conditions, dangerous group dynamics, lack of training, or fatigue I respond to this by controlling my breathing and taking a step back. These warning signs are never worth pushing. They are the precursors to accidents/injuries. You can always come back and accomplish what you wanted at a better time, and if a better time never comes around then it’s just not meant to happen.
Where is one of your favorite places to go dive and why?
My favorite places to base jump are; Italy, Switzerland, and Moab, Utah. There’s a lot of reasons why these are my favorite places, but at the most basic level, it’s because of the landscape and type of jumps. My favorite places to skydive is Skydive Utah (because I learned to jump there), Skydive Arizona, and Skydive Perris. I’d really love to visit Norway, Dubai, and Australia.
What is your greatest personal achievement?
My greatest personal achievement is becoming the person I am today. This meant letting go of the social norms women my age have and pursuing a life that was best for me. It meant building the confidence and courage to step away from a life and “support system” that was toxic for me and creating a new family, and a new support system. In doing so, I found my passions and I found a happiness I did not know existed.
What do you wish you could tell other women everywhere?
Find what makes you smile and keep following that. Let it lead you to the next thing and then keep going. What makes you smile will change and it will evolve. Most likely it won’t be a perfectly clear picture, but your happiness is the most important thing in your life. This is what makes you beautiful.
What do you wish you could see more of in the world?
Equality. At the very least, if you cant help fight for equality then give love. Put yourself in their shoes.
Sometimes a hug is everything. You don’t even have to speak the same language to give empathy and love.
What do you think the community can do to be more uplifting to each other?
I think this starts with ourselves. When we are secure in our own skin and happy it is easy to uplift and encourage others. The best thing our community can do to be more encouraging and uplifting is just speaking up! I think that its easy to be shy, or worry about if you’ll come across weird, but the best thing you can do is just get it out.
Tell someone when they inspire you, or when you’re happy for their accomplishment and give support when they need it because we all know what it feels like to get support in hard times.
What have you done to create positive change around you and for yourself?
Through childhood and early adulthood, I dealt with sexual, physical, and emotional abuse from family members.
I spent a large majority of my life being destructive, victimizing myself, and being completely lost.
What I’ve realized through time is; get away from toxicity. All forms of it. A bad/mediocre relationship or friends that discourage you, just get away from it.
Secondly, it can be easy to focus on the negative when it feels like its the only thing around you. But if you can take all that energy to focus on the positive it will change your entire world. I kept exploring and learning ways to cope and I surrounded myself with people that inspired me. Slowly, but surely I found my own family and a new happiness.
What is your food of choice before or after your adventuring?
Right now, I’ve been on a bean and rice kick. I’ll cook quinoa and rice, and mix tomato, beans, corn, and some sort of protein with the rice, and that’s been my go-to. I’ll throw some cilantro and my favorite seasoning on top, and I’m ready to conquer. Its cheap, easy, and fuels me for hours. For snacks; I carry Honey Stinger Waffles, Honey Stinger energy chews, MamaChia seeds, and Smash Packs.
What is your adventure rig?
My partner in crime and I have a Tacoma truck that we take for adventures. We’ve got a platform with a bed on it and we have a nice system down. I definitely prefer the truck set-up for adventures.
You’re stranded in the wilderness, what 3 things are your can’t-live-without?
My three practical things would be; a flint, knife, clothing appropriate for the environment. My three impractical things would be; a super-duper fuzzy blanket, an endless supply of cherries, and my base rig.
What is your Adult-job?
Oh, adulting. My adult job is bar-tending. I finished college December 2017and I’ve been giving myself the time to dump all my energy into traveling and skydiving. I’m not sure what’s next. I think flight school in a few months sounds like the next step for me.
What interests you when you are indoors, not outdoors?
In the rare occasion that I’m indoors, I’m usually doing yoga, meditating, hanging out with friends, or eating food with friends.
What got you started in this high adrenaline lifestyle?
I had always thought that skydiving would be fun, but could never justify the cost of it. Then one day, my best friend was in town and she had completed her skydive licensing with the air force academy. She was going out to jump for the day and invited me to tag along. The rest is history.
Who is your femmespiration? ??
This is a tough question because I am constantly inspired by other women and I am lucky to have many beautiful women in my life that provide support! There is a common theme with the women who inspire me, and that is they unapologetically pursue their dreams. They’re women who are not afraid of showing their love and have the courage to show even their dark sides.
→ Jessica Maviano | Advocate of the Skies
Jessica is always on the road finding new heights to leap from and traveling to new scenery to inspire her. You can find her on Instagram or at the highest peaks. To get involved with the current laws on BASE jumping in a National Park send Jessica an email at email@example.com.