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This day gave me one of my more random experiences in Central America, perhaps even in life, but is definitely something anyone in Nicaragua should try – Volcano boarding on the active volcano, the Cerro Negro!
The day didn’t start in the best of ways. We had to get to León early, which was a lovely 3 hour drive away. I was hungover as hell and had had a total of 3 hours sleep; did not love the 4am alarm. Arriving in León we headed for the Bigfoot hostel which served up the most delicious breakfast, as well as organising the boarding itself.
As part of the price we all got given Bigfoot volcano boarding vests and so feeling quite the part we set off. We boarded an extremely hot chicken bus and bumped along the countryside tracks towards the Cerro Negro volcano.
When you arrive you are given the large wooden boards you will later be sliding back down on. There are also sherpas around, who for $5 dollars will carry your board up the volcano for you. Best $5 I have ever spent. It was exhausting enough without having to carry a massive lump of wood as well. Even early in the morning it was a hot and sweaty climb. It was so worth it though and taking in the views from the top,standing on a hot, smoking, active volcano was just something else.
It was then time for the boarding. Donned a lovely orange jumpsuit, goggles and grabbed my board. I’m not going to lie, I was quite nervous at this point. However, there was really no need to be. I don’t think I fully got the knack of leaning back and pulling the board up as I never hit record speeds. Some of our group got the records for that day. It was great fun and totally surreal experience to be pelting down volcanic ash on a thin bit of board and I would highly recommend!
We got back to the bus and drank celebratory beers before heading back to Leon.
Another fantastic day in Nicaragua, something totally different and unique and above all highly recommended!