There was a moment when Felix Baumgartner was spinning so violently during his record-breaking space jump in 2012 that it didn’t look like he was going to make it. Seeing it from the ground was terrifying enough, but imagine what it was like from his perspective. Thanks to an amazing new video put together by GoPro, you can experience the entire jump, which took place an incredible 24.2 miles above Earth, from Baumgartner’s point of view. My stomach dropped just watching it.
When Baumgartner stepped off the ledge of his space balloon at 127,852.4ft above sea level, his body reached a maximum speed of 843.6 mph, his flesh and blood barreling toward Earth—that’s Mach 1.25, or 1.25x the speed of sound. From the ground below, Baumgartner was just a tiny white blur against a cobalt blue sky, descending from space like a human meteor. In the process, the daredevil broke a number of records, including the maximum vertical speed, highest exit jump altitude and high vertical distance of freefall.
The footage captured by the many GoPros attached to Baumgartner is absolutely stunning, showing the jump from many different angles as he propels through the air. He was at such a great heigh that you could see the curvature of the Earth. For a time it looks like Baumgartner is merely floating along, enjoying a once-in-a-lifetime view, when things suddenly go bad as he starts to spin uncontrollably. Baumgartner eventually regained control, and safely landed back on Earth.
If by chance you missed the Red Bull Stratos jump, this video (below) is a must-watch.