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The Drakensberg Features On This List Of The World’s Most Dangerous And Deadly Hikes

Story from: 2oceansvibe.com

I know you felt a little like Indiana Jones the last time you climbed the chains and ladders section of Lion’s Head, but some of these are slightly more terrifying.

So terrifying, in fact, that they feature on BusinessInsider’s list of the “15 most dangerous and deadly hikes in the world”.

When they say dangerous they don’t mean crime-related, either, because certain hikes have a lengthy list of casualties caused by the extreme challenges they pose.

We’re going to start with the Drakensberg, and then we’ll pick a few others.

Drakensberg Traverse, South Africa

Rumor [sic] has it that so many people have died on this 40-mile trek that officials have simply stopped counting. That’s not to say that deaths aren’t reported almost every year, though.

The most dangerous part of this trail may be at the very beginning, where hikers climb two rickety chain ladders to a narrow ridge where animal tracks, herding trails, and rocks make up the trail.

Mount Hua Shan, China

This hair-rising path is literally no more than a few rotting wooden planks bolted into the side of a cliff with rusty nails, hundreds of feet above the ground.

Called the most dangerous hike in the world, it is rumored that 100 people die on Hua Shan annually, although there are no official death statistics. However, it doesn’t seem too far off considering that there’s a point in the hike where even the planks of wood disappear, and where hikers must rely on small cavities carved into stone.

El Caminito del Rey, Spain

El Caminito del Rey features a narrow path that hangs 100 feet in the air. Built 10 decades ago, parts of the pathway has started crumbling, making it extra dangerous. In fact, the hike was shut down for several years after four adventurers plummeted to their deaths in 2000.

The path has since been fixed, reinforced, and reopened. While it’s safer than before, the park has now capped the number of visitors to 600 per day.

Pacaya Volcano, Guatemala

Pacaya Volcano is an active volcano, which means it could erupt on hikers at any moment. In fact, a 2010 eruption claimed three lives, another eruption three years later sent lava flowing down one side of the mountain, and just last year it spewed hot ash.

However, none of that deters hikers from climbing it — not even the fact that it can get hot enough to melt the soles of your shoes. On the plus side, people have roasted marshmallows on the side of the volcano before.

Roasting marshmallows on the side of a volcano – now that’s gangster.

One more – Half Dome, Mist Trail, California

According to a Yosemite hiking website, over 60 people have died on Half Dome and the trail leading up to it. In fact, at least five people have died there the past 10 years alone, mostly when the rock was wet from rain.

Although steel cables help climbers on the last part of the ascent, rain causes it to become incredibly slippery.

Certainly not for the faint of heart.

Thankfully not all of the hikes around the Western Cape risk life and limb, and you can find a list of the 17 best multi-day hikes HERE.

Be safe out there, friends.

[source:businessinsider]

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