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  • sambosch87

The history of Volcano Boarding

Updated: Feb 12

Volcano boarding, a thrilling adventure sport, has a rich and diverse history that spans centuries and continents. Let's explore its fascinating journey through time.


He'e Holua!

Volcano sledding, known as he'e holua or "sled surfing," traces back over 2,000 years to the Hawaiian islands. Early enthusiasts would navigate long, slender wooden sleds down pathways of lava rocks, either naturally formed or carved by human hands.



Not On My Watch!

Despite its ancient roots, the sport faced suppression in 1825 when British missionaries prohibited its practice. However, the allure of riding down fiery slopes never truly faded away.


Extreme Sport

Fast forward to the 21st century, and volcano boarding experiences a modern renaissance. In 2002, French daredevil Éric Barone pushed the limits by hurtling down Nicaragua's Cerro Negro volcano on a bike, reaching speeds upwards of 100 miles per hour. His daring feat captured global attention and sparked renewed interest in extreme volcano sports.


Speeding down Cerro Negro

Current Day Volcano Boarding

The true genesis of modern volcano boarding can be attributed to Australian adventurer Darryn Webb. While traversing Central America in 2004, Webb stumbled upon Nicaragua's Cerro Negro and was captivated by locals sliding down its ash-covered slopes on makeshift boards. Inspired, Webb embarked on a mission to craft the perfect board for the rugged terrain and breakneck speeds of volcano slopes.



The Next Level

After extensive experimentation with various materials, Webb developed a durable board made of plywood, metal, and Formica, capable of handling the volcanic terrain with ease. In 2005, he founded Bigfoot Hostel, offering volcano boarding tours and accommodations, thereby transforming his passion into a thriving business.



We're Going Global!

Thanks to Webb's pioneering efforts, volcano boarding has evolved into a popular global phenomenon, attracting thrill-seekers from all corners of the world. Today, numerous tour companies offer adrenaline-pumping ashboarding experiences in exotic locations, fueling the sport's exponential growth and widespread appeal.


Who Did It First?

While Webb is widely credited with popularizing modern volcano boarding, claims of its invention by others, such as American journalist Zoltan Istvan, add intriguing layers to its narrative. Regardless of its disputed origins, one thing remains certain: volcano boarding continues to push the boundaries of adventure sports, offering enthusiasts an unforgettable ride into the heart of nature's raw power.

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