Armenia isn’t known for being a hot spot of extreme sports enthusiasts, but maybe that’s why the government agreed to host an Extreme Sports Festival from August 1-10 this summer. The HayExtreme Festival features various countries competing in a slew of sports any Adrenalist would enjoy.
Lake Sevan, which rests on the east side of Armenia and doesn’t quite reach the Azerbaijan border, is the site of the games. Organizer, Armine Harutyunyan, says it’s looking to become an annual event in order to attract people who wouldn’t normally come to Armenia. It’s also an opportunity for Armenian children to converse with people involved in some of the sports/hobbies/events where people will be competing. In all, it’s an experimental set of extreme sports events for a country that’s not always been open to outsiders.
Approximately 3000 athletes are said to have come from Germany, Russia, France, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Turkmenistan, Georgia and Denmark to compete in contests like paintball, rock climbing and paragliding. They’ve also participated in diving, off-roading (in Jeeps, which is pretty fun to watch), sailing, windsurfing, cycling and airsoft.