A sport that has always been overshadowed by its more popular relative: snowboarding
. While sandboarding and snowboarding both originated around the same time (as derivatives of the surfboard
), only the "cooler" recreation
al form soared in popularity.
While snowboards still dominate the scene, sandboarding is hardly a cult activity. The World Sandboard Championships are held yearly in Monte Kaolino, Germany in front of crowds of 50,000+. There's even an international governing body for sandboarding: Dune Rider International.
Early sandboard models were crude, but thrifty: car hoods, used surfboards, and even water-skis! Borrowing from all the engineering put into snowboards, today’s designs add special waxes to the boards bottom--like Formica--for acceleration purposes over the gritty terrain. The biggest problem was finding dunes for boarding. While the ski industry had little trouble converting its slopes into boarding facilities, maintaining soily land was tough and expensive.