Original air date: January 4, 1997
Written by: Tommy Thompson
Directed by: Ian Toynton
Jarod becomes suspicious after a survivalist, who was also part owner of a struggling skydiving school, dies during one of his many trips into the desert.
Jarod’s Discoveries: Popcicles, Meatloaf
Jarod’s Occupations: Skydiving Instructor, IRS Agent, Handyman
Jarod’s Aliases: Jarod Cochran, Buddy Slocum Jr
Secrets Revealed: Miss Parker finds out that her mother lied about her visits to Aunt Dorothy, visiting with Ben
Jarod investigates the death of a skydiver who met a mysterious end in the desert.
Sydney and Miss Parker view a DSA that Jarod deliberately left behind when he fled his last lair. In it, a Young Jarod demands to know who he is. Though Miss Parker dismisses it as yet another diversion, Sydney believes that Jarod is taking a leap of faith. Meanwhile, Jarod, now a skydiving instructor, jumps out of an airplane with an overweight woman.
At a hanger in the Miles-Bates Blue Desert Skydiving School, Jarod speaks with Crockett, a mechanic who busies himself maintaining a small aircraft. Carol, who runs the school, hires Jarod as her newest instructor. She tells him that she lost her partner, Tom Miles, several months earlier when he tested his endurance by skydiving into the desert with only a canteen of water, a compass and a knife, something he had done on a dozen previous occasions. But something went wrong during his trek through the desert and he died. Now, Carol intends to save the business by purchasing a new jump plane and constructing a new indoor training facility. Later, Carol introduces Jarod to Sheriff Dwight Kunkle.
Miss Parker receives a birthday gift from Jarod, a “Miss Parker Edition” of his little red notebook. Inside is a photograph of a man unfamiliar to Miss Parker. When Broots electronically enhances the image, he discovers evidence that the man, Benjamin Thomas Miller, runs a local bed and breakfast in Maine. Miss Parker travels to Maine, where she receives a phone call from Jarod. He tells her that he is providing her with answers…but does not elaborate further, except to ask if Parker has checked for skeletons in her closet.
Jarod encounters an elderly Native American, Two Feathers, who also goes by the name Ernie, who claims the Sky Fathers told him a traveler would approach him seeking the truth…and that he would be the traveler’s guide. Before Jarod can ask more questions, the mysterious man vanishes.
Meanwhile, Jarod pays Tom Miles’ pregnant widow, Angela, a visit. Later, he goes skydiving with some students…and uses a snowboard for some spectacular aerial maneuvers.
Miss Parker makes her way to the Lake Catherine Inn, where she approaches Ben. He recognizes her from her resemblance to her mother.
Jarod approaches Sheriff Kunkle, who confirms that an autopsy had been performed on Tom Miles’ body. Posing as an IRS agent, Jarod drops by the sheriff’s office while Kunkle is away on business. He convinces a clerk to turn over documents related to Tom Miles. Later, Angela tells Jarod that Carol and Tom had a relationship long before they wed and had the baby. But they grew apart and ended their personal relationship. Angela points out that if it hadn’t been for the insurance money, the skydiving business would have failed.
Ernie tells Jarod that it was he who discovered Tom Miles’ body in the desert. According to Ernie, the wounds on Miles’ face were from madness induced by the belladonna plant, sometimes used by Native Americans for vision quests.
Miss Parker questions Ben about her mother’s mysterious visits to the inn. It becomes apparent that Ben was in love with her mother, who always traveled to the inn around springtime.
Jarod discovers that Crockett’s real name is Angus Marin, who is on the run from the law. He approaches Crockett and tells him that he knows Carol is using Angela to access Tom Miles’ insurance money so she can fix up the business and then sell it to another company. He is also aware that Crockett stands to pocket twenty-five percent of Carol’s profit. Crockett describes how Carol switched Tom’s canteen on the morning of the jump. After Tom’s death, Crockett approached Carol about the mysterious canteen switch, at which time she offered him a cut of the profits.
As Jarod and Carol fly over a remote part of desert, their airplane experiences mechanical difficulties. The pair parachute out of the plane. Jarod fakes a broken leg and sends Carol off to get help. Unbeknownst to her, the canteen she carries is spiked with a powerful hallucinogen. Jarod finds her, delirious, and accuses her of letting Tom die in the desert alone.
Later, Jarod regroups with Ernie, only this time, it is he who suddenly vanishes in the blink of an eye.