Contributing Monkie Sarah Backhouse
Published on July 6, 2008
New Zealand is famous for three things: hobbits, sheep and adrenaline sports. With regards to the latter, Kiwis rule all things heart-pounding, from bungy jumping and white water rafting, to heli-skiing and zorbing. In fact, Queenstown in New Zealand’s south island has become a global mecca for those looking to scare themselves senseless. So, it comes as no surprise that a New Zealander is behind the Blokart, which some scientifically describe as “wind-powered awesomeness”.
Paul Beckett is the brains behind the Blokart, a three-wheeled cart with front wheel steering attached to a windsurf sail. Since its launch in 2001, the Blokart has gained in popularity with Blokart clubs and schools springing up all over the world. Dudes who ride the ‘kart describe the experience as “sweet”.
But its benefits are many. The Blokart’s design also makes it a sweet ride for people in wheelchairs. In fact, according to pushingthelimits.com, in 2007, a paraplegic Frenchman named Nicolas Massatt navigated his Blokart through an eight day, 2,000 km race across the Gobi desert.
For those living in snowy climates, ice sliders can replace the wheels, so one “can rock out on frozen lakes”. Best of the all, Blokart is wind-powered — making it a totally “G” sport, Dude.
Come to think of it, many of NZ’s extreme sports are kind to the environment, so what are you waiting for? There’s nothing quite like hearing the clipped accent of your outdoorsy Kiwi instructor yell: “three, two, one… bungyyyyy” as you free fall from a Queenstown bridge. (Not that I’ve done of it, of course. I much prefer the sheep.)