The Wildest Winter Activities

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Source: Mystik Lubricants / YouTube

5. Arctic Man (Snowmobile-pulled ski race)
> Where it originated: Alaska
> Equipment needed: Skis, snowmobile with driver, towline

Described as Alaskan Burning Man, Arctic Man is an event centered around a unique 5.5-mile race that originated as a drunken bet. A skier or snowboarder zooms down a mountain before grabbing a tow rope attached to the back of a snowmobile. The snowmobile drags the racer to a jump at over 80 mph, before the skier makes the leap and heads to the finish line.

Source: US Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Rhiannon Willard

4. Outhouse races
> Where it originated: Alaska
> Equipment needed: Custom built outhouse, helmet, teammates, roll of toilet paper

What the Anchorage, Alaska outhouse race lacks in speed, it makes up for in creativity in potty humor (the official website tells competitors “don’t be no. 2 in this race to the finish!”). The race is part of a festival called the Fur Rendezvous that dates back to the 1930s. Outhouse race rules require one person to sit on the custom built outhouse while teammates push them along the course. The outhouse also has to have at least one roll of toilet paper on it.

Source: Auto Snowplow / YouTube

3. Autonomous Snowplow Competition
> Where it originated: Minnesota
> Equipment needed: Custom built autonomous snow plow

The annual Autonomous Snowplow Competition celebrates the technologically gifted people among us who don’t want to go outside and shovel their driveway. Teams compete to build snow plows that are totally unmanned that clean up a designated course faster and more completely than others.

Source: FGS Trip / YouTube

2. Hair freezing competition
> Where it originated: Canada
> Equipment needed: Hot springs, temperatures -20 degrees and below, hair

Extreme cold weather can have interesting effects on the human body, and nowhere is this displayed better than at the hair freezing competition in the Takhini Hot Pools resort in Yukon Territory, Canada. The resort encourages guests to get into a hot spring and dunk their head underwater and watch their hair freeze in the below-zero temperatures when they surface. Winners get $750. Unfortunately, those who are bald have no shot at winning.

Source: GoPro / YouTube

1. Speed flying
> Where it originated: France
> Equipment needed: Skis, parachute, helmet

If sitting by a warm fire with a drink during the cold winter months doesn’t interest you, there’s always speed flying. A combination of base jumping and skiing, speed flying should only be attempted by the most extreme thrill seekers. Speed flyers ski down to the edge of a cliff or sheer mountain edge, then leap off. Before landing, speed flyers deploy a paragliding-style parachute that allows them to glide to safety. Of all the extreme winter activities, speed flying is the wildest.