FAYETTEVILLE, W.Va. — Thrillseekers from across the globe are converging on West Virginia for an annual bridge-jumping event.

Saturday’s Bridge Day festival in Fayetteville is being held for the 38th year. It is the one day a year that it’s legal to jump off the 876-foot high span across the New River Gorge.

Hundreds of BASE-jumping parachutists make the annual leap off the bridge. The acronym BASE stands for the places from which jumpers usually leap: buildings, antennae, spans and earth.

More than 80,000 people are expected to walk across the bridge. Rappellers also will make their way from a cat walk under the bridge to the river below. Also available to anyone for $159 will be an 800-foot-long high line slide that drops 300 vertical feet.

The 3,030-foot-long bridge opened to traffic in October 1977.



Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.