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Now that snowboarding has become a sport of the masses, thrill seekers have found a new way to keep that adrenaline flowing - Volcano Boarding.
As the name implies, it entails climbing up a live active volcano and then hurtling down at speeds of up to 80mph, aboard a specially constructed plywood board.
Volcano boarding, a relatively young sport was first introduced at the Cerro Negro volcano in Nicaragua in 2005, by a local tour company. Since then, over 10,000 sport enthusiasts have flocked to the region to try it out.
The tour entails a 45-minute rocky hike up the back of the volcano. At the summit, hikers can admire the views, get up close to the center of the volcano and even descend into the bottom of the hot crater if they so desire.
When ready, each volcano boarder is given a short training session, special protective jump suits, knee-pads, protective eye wear and and the special board, so that they can embark on their 1,640 feet descent down the sandy side of the volcano. While most volcano boarders come down sitting, there are special boards available for those who want to brave the descent standing.
The tour organizers say that the sport requires very little experience and is open to anyone who is seeking an adventure. They also claim that it is extremely safe, with the biggest danger being that of tumbling off the board into the black volcanic sand and collecting a few bruises along the way.
The Cerro Negro, South America's youngest and most active volcano is located in the Cordillera De Los Maribios mountain range, near the city of Leon in Nicaragua. Since April 1850, it has erupted 20 times, with the last eruption occurring in 1999.
Sources: Dailymail.co.uk, nomad18.travellerspoint.com, wikipedia.org