Do you want to fly? Don't have hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend on a plane? Then try the new sport on the block: ropeboarding.
Ropeboarding is a blossoming new international sport. Notable groups are Brock Ropeboarding, Fly High Ropeboarding, Adrenaline Ropeboarding, and many more. It originated in Kitchener, Ontario thanks to the Brock Ropeboarding group. Tricks that you can do are similar to skateboarding tricks. Many exist but new ones are being thought up constantly. A few weeks ago, one of my friends did a handstand on the ropeboard (of course, she's a gymnast). It provides for hours of fun with friends, a place for your creativity, and an ab workout that you will feel after your first day. Jump on for a thrill!
This is our ropeboarding video:
Step 1: Getting the Supplies
For your own ropeboard, you will need several supplies. These include:
Rope (Recommended for at least 300 lbs.)
A Climbing Carabiner
A basic understanding of knots
Step 2: Preparing the Board
To begin, take the wheels and everything off of the bottom of the skateboard. It should be easy to just unscrew them from the top of the board.
Next, find the middle of the board and mark it. Measure it lengthwise and widthwise then divide each of those numbers by 2 to find the middle in each direction. Mark it here.
Drill out a hole here about the diameter of your rope. You can also paint it if you want.
Your board is now primed for ropeboarding.
Step 3: Preparing the Rope
Get your rope and tie a bowline in one end. This will be the end attached to the tree. Wrap the bowline in duct tape. Duct tape down the rope about 1-2 feet. This will prevent fraying that could result in injury or death.
Do not cut anything else just yet.
Step 4: Getting the Rope Up
This is the hard part. You have to get the end with the loop up and over the branch that you have decided on. This is where you may have to be creative. Most people either climb the tree or get a ladder to get up to the branch. For my ropeboard, we tie a rock to the end of the rope and threw it over the branch since it was too high to climb. Be aware that this is very dangerous if the rock comes down and hits someone as it will probably injure if not kill him or her.
Try to get the rope around as close to the tree as possible without posing a risk of swinging into the tree when it is finished. This will minimize the risk of the branch breaking to almost nothing.
You will know you have done this successfully if you are on the ground and are holding the loop in one hand and the other end of the rope in the other hand. Of course, between these two ends the rope should be going over the branch.
Step 5: Securing the Rope
After I spent 2 days trying to get up the rope this was very satisfying. Make sure the rope is not tangled around itself. Put the untied end of the rope through the loop and slowly pull on this end so the loop goes up to the branch. The rope is now in place. Give it a few good yanks to make sure that it is tight. You absolutely do not want the rope to be sliding on the tree branch as it will cause it to snap. It can end like this:
Just make sure the rope is snug up there.
Step 6: Attaching Your Easy Swap Carabiner
Get out your step ladder and tie another bowline in the rope so the bottom of the loop is about 8 feet up. Cut off the extra rope. Put the carabiner on this loop and give it a good tug to make sure it is tight.
Step 7: Attaching the Handle
You want to be able to hold the handle with your arm straight up while holding the ropeboard on the ground.
To begin, tie a loop in the wakeboard handle's rope. Next put this loop over the carabiner. Adjust the loop so you can hold the handle over your head comfortably. It helps to have a friend do this with you. Once you are done adjusting cut off the extra rope. Pull to tighten the knot.
You should now have a handle hanging on a rope on a tree that you can swing from.
Step 8: Getting the Board Attached
You have to attach the board now to finish up. Put a rope through the hole in the board. Tie an overhand know or 8 knot on the bottom of the board. Make sure it is secure since this will be holding your weight. Tie a loop in the other end of the rope. Don't tighten it down just yet.
Put the loop on the board on the carabiner. Adjust the loop so the board is about 1.5 to 2 feet off of the ground. Find a place that is comfortable for you. Once you find that spot, tighten down the knot.
You now have a working ropeboard. Hop on and swing a bit to make sure everything is secure.
Step 9: Ropeboard!
Join the ultimate pastime. watch a few ropeboarding videos on youtube to figure out how its done. If you want extra height, you may want to build yourself a platform to jump off of. These can get pretty big, but i'll let you figure out how to make your own.