Heart-pounding video shows the death-defying moment a daredevil kayaker descends a snow-capped volcano at 100 km / h before racing through a forest and a waterfall, in scenes that are clearly reminiscent of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
Red Bull athlete Aniol Serrasolses can be seen on top of Villarrica, one of Chile’s most active volcanoes, and enjoys the breathtaking view from the 9,340-foot peak. After soaking up the landscape, he gets into his kayak to make the 25 km descent.
As soon as the 29-year-old Spaniard tips over the edge, he’s gone like a shot with just his paddle to keep him from going off course.
Daredevil kayaker Aniol Serrasolses on the summit of Villarrica, one of the most active volcanoes in Chile, before starting his stunt
After soaking up the landscape, Serrasolses gets into his kayak to make the 25km descent down the volcano
In certain places it flies through the air as it whizzes off the edges of snow. Then he strikes back and continues shooting.
After driving a good stretch of snow and rocks, he enters a wooded area where trees and other pieces of undergrowth turn out to be an obstacle course. Despite the leaf net, he avoids a collision.
Eventually Serrasolses reaches a fast flowing river that it seamlessly navigates into a dramatic waterfall.
When he reaches the drop, he does a mind-boggling flip in free fall.
As soon as the Spaniard tips over the edge of the volcano, he’s gone like a shot with just his paddle to keep him from straying off course
In certain places, Serrasolses soars through the air as it whizzes off the edges. Then he hits compact snow again and continues shooting
The trick, known as a “double kickflip”, is to make two full revolutions in the air.
It had apparently never been performed in a kayak before, which gave Serrasolses another reason to celebrate after stalling. When he stops, he appears to be in a euphoric state with a big ear-to-ear grin.
The veteran athlete managed the descent last September, the beginning of the Chilean spring, when mostly snow was still on the ground and the rivers were flowing well.
After driving through the snow-capped volcano and a piece of forest, Serrasolses ends up in a fast flowing river
While the extreme kayaker said the adrenaline rush is a major factor in why he faces extreme challenges, he added that the “places, people and experiences” are the greatest thrills for him when it comes to the sport
With most of the athlete’s other competitions canceled due to the pandemic, he had some more ambitious projects in his sights, including Villarrica ancestry.
He said: “I’ve always wanted to go kayaking down the snow and combine the four elements of earth, air, water and fire. I took advantage of the great winter Chile experienced in 2020 and the difficulty of traveling due to the situation we live in and decided that this was the year the project was developed. ‘
Before the stunt, Serrasolses did a test run, but it didn’t go well. During the exercise descent, he hit a bump, spun nearly 360 degrees, and flew 30 feet through the air before landing flat on his face.
When he comes to a dramatic waterfall, Serrasolses performs a mind-boggling freefall flip
The trick, known as a “double kickflip”, is to make two full revolutions in the air. Here a stop-motion photo by Nicolas Gantz shows how the move works
Villarrica is one of the few volcanoes in the world that is classified as permanently active
Fortunately, the main run went a lot smoother and Serrasolses described it as “pretty fun”.
He added, “The part on the snow was the hardest part as a kayak isn’t really made for the snow. So you drive him like a sleigh. You’re walking very fast, but you’re kind of out of control. ‘
While the extreme kayaker said adrenaline is a major factor in why he takes on extreme challenges, he added that “places, people and experiences” are the greatest thrills for him when it comes to the sport.
“Besides,” he mused, “kayaking is all about just living.” It transports you to another time when things were easier. ‘