Volcano boarding is an activity I never thought I’d be brave enough to do, but when in Nicaragua…!
We travelled by a small plane from Roatan island to the capital of Honduras, Tegulcigalpa – then headed south across the Nicaraguan border to León. What is there to do in León? One of the most bizarre extreme sports I’ve ever heard of – volcano boarding.
The tour organised by Bigfoot Hostels starts with a drive down bumpy roads on the back of a large open truck. Once there, it’s time to hike for one hour up the side of the active Cerro Negro volcano carrying a wooden board. When I reached the 2388 ft high summit, I peered over the edge and questioned life for a second, and why I would ever pay to fling myself down the side of it, especially when clinging on for dear life to a piece of wood and a tiny rope handle. Then I donned a Guantanamo orange suit, goggles, and perched on the edge of the ash and rocks, ready to push off.
There is no track, just a small groove in the ash from the previous volcano boarders that day. The rest is up to you to control. Speed is increased by lying back as flat as possible. Steering is done by placing your left or right foot out and digging in gently to the rocks. The goggles protect you from some of the rocks flying at your face, but you can still expect to be pretty grubby by the end!
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