remember being a grommet boarder back in the 80’s and standing at the top of “Olympic” for the first time, a black diamond run at Perisher, Australia. Was I going to die? It was the steepest, largest and most formidable snow terrain I had seen. I survived, minus a single crash on the drop off at the top. A six foot launch off the lip to get the run going.
I also remember that after making that first run it was the roller-coaster call of “let’s go again, let’s go again.” That was my first “pants pooping” run on a mountain – more have followed since. I have not attempted any on this list of our Top 10 most dangerous runs in the world and my age and mortality now will probably hold me back from doing so.
Now there are people who have skied down Everest, but no boarders yet. No word of a lie a few people have done it. It took Davo Karnicar, 38, of Jezersko, Slovenia, five hours to ski from Everest’s 29,035-foot summit to its base camp, which is at 17,500 feet. He took only a few breaks and never removed his skis, according to the Nepal Ministry of Tourism.
While Everest isn’t the most accessible for most of us to ride death defying slopes I wanted to present what I thought was the Top 10 most dangerous slopes in the world that were accessible to the public. So don your diapers, grab your boards and all your savings. Fill out your will and wax that base, it’s time to countdown some hellish rides.
10) Backside of the Valluga – St Anton, Austria
This run at the backside of the Valluga in St Anton isn’t technically demanding. All you have to do is get to the top and accept your fate, which is a lot harder than it sounds. Your journey starts with a gondola ride to the top of the most challenging ski area in Austria and you can only get on the car if you’re accompanied by a qualified mountain guide. You then have to gently push through the crowds of tourists at the top of the viewing platform. And then hear gasps when you strap on your board. The first slope is apparently pretty easy to handle but, as luck would have it, it ends in a precipice. Pay attention – if you miss the left turn you’ll end up on jagged rocks 700m below!
9) The Streif – Kitzbühel, Austria
The Streif, in Kitzbühel, is the most spectacular downhill skiing race track in the world. It brings the best skiers from every corner of the world together in an almost gladiator style fight for the honour of victory on the Streif. During the winter, before and after the race, the Streif is a public run and one can tackle the racecourse or the easier Family Streif, which offers two alternative gradients.
In downhill ski racing, the Streif, is regarded as the ultimate challenge because of the diversity of its terrain. All the elements of a classic downhill course can be found on the Streif: high speed breathtaking jumps, steep slopes, flat out gliding sections, curves, compressions, spectacular bumps and even a short uphill section just before the Seidlalm jump. The Streif has it all and sounds like an extreme challenge for snowboarders looking for a rush.
This baby is all about speed – it’s gruelling – and while it’s an Olympic skiing track, it’s still available for the best of snowboarding. Just look above at how deadly this beast is. Apologies it is solely a skiing video – no boarding videos this intense on Streif that we could locate.