Remembering Eddie Braun’s Snake River Canyon Jump One Year Later
I find it hard to believe that it's already been one year. But, this Saturday marks the one-year anniversary of Eddie Braun's successful jump over Snake River Canyon.
Eddie Braun: Dare to do epic things despite the doubters and skeptics and go for it with all you've got
After years of back and forth between Eddie's team and the city of Twin Falls, there were indications late last summer that plans were getting serious. I didn't become directly involved until Eddie held a press conference on September 14, 2016.
The inference we got from the press conference was that they were being coy about a planned launch day for several reasons. First of all, there was the unknown factor of what winds would be like on any given day near the Canyon. There was also concern expressed about what could happen if crowds tried to gather on or around Hansen Bridge, near the launch site. There were infamous reports from Evel Knievel's failed jump back in 1974 of crowds nearly pushing through fences into the Canyon. This concern by Eddie's team for public safety has been one of the least understood aspects of this jump, in my opinion. Some perceived this as a slight to the people in Twin Falls not being able to witness this jump. I never got any vibe like that from Eddie or the planners. It was the opposite.
The launch window that was publicly stated was anytime between Friday, September 16 and Sunday, September 18. Due to weather conditions that were predicted, I had a gut feeling that Friday was gonna be the day. We arrived at the scenic overlook near Hansen Bridge late that Friday morning. As you can see in some of the pictures I shared above, there was a good indication that the jump was imminent due to the presence of law enforcement and activity around the launch site.
What happened next is unlike anything else I have ever witnessed in my life.
I was a snot-nosed 8-year-old Midwestern kid who watched the Evel Knievel jump attempt on TV. There are insufficient words to express the emotions of seeing the jump successfully done in-person over 40 years later. The cool factor of seeing a dude fly over the Canyon in a rocket blew me away.
But, after one year, it's not the magnitude of the jump that I remember. It's the small things that are meaningful to me now. I watched the Braun team take the high road when accused of wronging Twin Falls and show nothing but gratitude for those that supported them. I watched some amazing respect shown to the Knievel family, much of which has gone unreported. Anyone who has followed Eddie on his Facebook page will tell you that there has been nothing but love for Twin Falls since that jump a year ago. To me, many in Twin Falls cheated themselves out on something they could have embraced.
I reached out to Eddie Braun to get his feelings on the one-year anniversary of his Snake River Canyon jump. He was his usual go-get-em self.
Dare to do epic things despite the doubters and skeptics and go for it with all you've got
One of the cool things about America is you are free to love or hate what happened on (and over) Snake River Canyon one year ago. For me, I say thank you Eddie. Your jump was the closest I've come to remembering what the 8-year-old version of me used to be like.