‘You Couldn’t Make This Up Dept’: Adventurers Climb into a Live Fiery Volcano


Daredevil climbers in silver heat proof suits lower themselves towards boiling lava in the Marum Volcano in Vanuatu near Australia. The video has become an internet sensation after it was filmed by volcanologist Geoff Mackley at the remote Marum volcano on Ambrym Island in the South Pacific Ocean.

There, they pitched a tent 500 meters  down the inside of the smoldering volcano from the lava lake while using oxygen canisters to breath due to the lack of oxygen. They set up their equipment on the lip of the active Marum volcano – which is classified as highly dangerous and is constantly sending plumes of volcanic ash more than a mile high over the island. The volcano is found on the tiny Ambrym Island which is among 82 others in the Vanuatu archipeligo around 400 miles from Australia. 

But Mackley and his team wanted to experience the thrill of venturing inside the volcano, which is reputed to be the place where islanders begin their journey to the afterlife when they have died. 

Because Mackley's film is so amazing sceptics have suggested it is a fake. But Mackley told MailOnline from his home in New Zealand: 'I don't fake things. What would be the point of me travelling around the world to film volcanoes and earthquakes and then faking the footage? 'Of course, you can fake anything in a studio these days, but that's not for me. What you see from me is real.'

'A long lens, which we used, foreshortens the image so the lava looks a lot closer to Drew in his protective silver-coloured suit than it appears,' he explained. 'He is about 100m (100 yards) from the surface of the lava – which is certainly close enough for him to require a protective suit.

'The others of us were further up and while we could feel the intense heat we were quite a bit higher than Drew – although the camera makes us look as though we are just a bit above him.'

Mackley, 44, said the expedition to the volcano had been his dream and it had been 10 years in the planning. "Nothing else in life will ever compare to the mind-blowing rush of being so close to a spectacle like this.

Mackley claims to have scaled dozens of deadly volcanoes in remote locations around the world.

The film-maker and photographer flies to the dangerous spots and posts the pictures on his website.

But his latest expedition with a team of several other men is the furthest that they have ever abseiled into the jaws of a live volcano. The men are believed to be the first people who have ever dared ventured so close the Marum volcano which has erupted several times over the last century. They plan to return in a few months time to make a deeper descent – armed of course, with protective suits for everybody.

Jason McManus via dailymail.com


"The Galaxy" in Your Inbox, Free, Daily