Looking for an adrenaline-fuelled adventure? Maybe sheer cliff sides, wild animals and volcanoes is your bag? Or maybe you just like seeing photos and videos of others undertaking these crazy adventures. To satisfy these needs we've put together a list of five of our favourite fear-inducing hiking trails...
#5 Caminito Del Ray (The King's Little Pathway), Spain
The Caminito del Rey is a scary walkway which is pinned along the steep walls of a gorge in El Chorro in Spain. The Kings Little pathway was built between 1901 & 1905 for workers at the hydroelectric power plants at Chorro Falls and Gaitanejo Falls. The trail is made from concrete slabs which are rested on steel rails, supported by stanchions built around 45 degrees into the rocks surface. The Caminito del Rey had fallen into disrepair and was partially close for well over a decade. It took over four years to repair and renovate and reopened fully in 2015. The trail/walkway is only a metre wide and is 100 metres above the river below!
#4 Mount Pinatubo, Philippines
The Pinatubo is a relatively easy trail taking from 50 minutes to two hours but it's what you're hiking on that makes it scary... it's an active volcano! Mount Pinatubo laid dormant for over 400 years but in 1991 it erupted killing 800 people and again in 1992 claiming 72 lives. The eruption was so big that the sulfur dioxide released into the atmosphere lowered temperatures on a global scale and temporarily accelerated depletion of the ozone layer. The views along the way are stunning and the crater lake is breathtaking just be careful when dipping your toes in as the currents are strong. And just try to ignore the small fact you're walking on an active volcano....
#3 Devil's Path, New York
Who would of thought that New York would show up on this list, but that's all down to the Devil's Path. The trail itself is 24 miles long which includes a six mile round hike up Indian Mountain. This trail will be scary for anyone new to hiking and people who haven't hiked the trail before. It's a very steep and unrelenting climb which at times requires hikers to pull themselves by grabbing into wet slippery roots. Another section of the trail requires you to navigate a 10 foot cliff and shimmy around a fallen tree. Throughout the trail there are spots that tripping and falling has cost people their lives. According to officials at least one person a year dies on this trail either from a fall or a heart attack!
#2 Mount Washington, New Hampshire
Although the summit of Mount Washington is relatively small and the trail isn't that scary, what is scary is the unpredictable weather. Over 100 people have died whilst trying to summit this mountain either from suffering from hypothermia, being blown off ridges and even swept away by an avalanche. To give you an insight about how scary the weather is, let's just say the mountain holds the world wind speed record at 231 miles per hour!!! On Mount Washington state park's website they quote "There are no guarantees that hikers will escape the mountain unscathed, so if absolute safety is what you require then avoid a visit". It's no surprise it's called "the home of the world's worst weather".
#1 Via Ferrata, Dolomites
Via Ferrata is Italian for Iron Way and this route originates from the 15th Century. The trail was later used during World War One by specialized troops. Today though the route has been updated and has become more accessible thanks to new steel cables, ropes, walkways and suspension bridges. The route is well maintained but your personal safety all hinges on a special carabiner set called the Via Ferrata set. Then all you're faced with is sheer mountain sides and edging your way around tall ledges. Even though this is a popular well maintained trail people have fallen to their death. Most recently in 2009 a British woman fell to her death after slipping on a snow band and falling 600 feet, another died due to gear failure. This trail really isn't for the faint hearted.
Have you hiked any of these trails? Or do you think we've missed any out?