By Luke Kenton
This paraglider ended up landing in what he claims could be a remote, top-secret government facility, after avoiding terrifying crash that left him feeling lucky to be alive.
In the stunning Wasatch mountain ranges of Salt Lake City, Utah, adrenaline junkie Dominic Clarke was careening above the sweeping landscapes before a change of wind bought about a frightening chain of events, on April 24.
Opting to take a shorter route across the mountain range instead of around it, Dominic immediately found himself swept up in a rotor wind – a downward gust of curling air that caused his glider to fold in on itself.
Desperately trying to address his potentially fatal mistake, Dominic can be heard praying for any display of divine intervention to help save his life.
Thankfully for the 26-year-old, a mere few metres above the ground, the wind re-stabalised and his canopy reopened, cushioning his fall.
But the danger wasn’t over yet.
Cameron, a biology graduate and the founder of Pukana Adventure Films, said: “I impulsively decided to take the shorter route and cut straight through the range instead of taking the longer way around the large canyons.
“Doing so placed me far from roads, signs or any kind of real human activity.
“I felt like I had enough altitude to make it over, but as soon as I tried, I drastically started losing height.
“I dropped below the ridge line and encountered turbulent air called rotor – my paraglider then failed and deflated.
“I did my best to react and avoid getting tangled in the lines, but at this point I realised I was going down no matter what and had to look for a place to land.
“The ride got bumpy again and I hit the ground and rolled along the ground – I had no idea where I was.”
Stranded with no mobile phone service and nothing around him for several miles, Dominic began to trek through the shrubbery in search of road.
Suddenly, however, in a remote area of mountainside, Dominic notices a concentration of security cameras, walking past a motion detector warning him to ‘leave now’.
Dominic said: “Nothing was out of the ordinary until I started passing a load of motion detectors and cameras – there was one every 15ft.
“I only dared to stay there for a limited amount of time, but I have no idea what any of it was about.
“A part of me actually hoped they would send cops because I could’ve done with a ride.
“I’m still not sure what that place was.
“It was so heavily surveilled that it couldn’t have been just a normal research center.
“It was all very strange – I felt like I’d crash landed in Area 51.
“I’d love to know what’s going on in that area.”
To see more of Dominic’s adventures, follow him on Instagram: @Pukana_