Just how extreme are Parkway Drive?
They love jumping out of planes, but would they give extreme ironing a try?
From surfing with sharks to leaping out of planes, Parkway Drive love living on the edge. But just how extreme will they go? We researched some of the world’s most ludicrous sports to test their mettle...
WINSTON McCALL VOCALS: “I love surfing. It’s basically all I do when I’m off tour. I hate to sound like an Aussie cliché, but it’s true – I hang with the family and surf. It’s not the most daunting thing on this list, but the main problem with surfing is when you get caught in a tide and it rips your board shorts right off! That’s happened to me a bunch of times. You want to get up out of the water, because you’re swallowing it and being pulled under, but at the same time you don’t want someone to come and help you, because you’ve got the boys on show! When you get it right, it is an incredible rush, but there’s nothing dignified about sloshing about in the nude. So make sure you keep on the board if you’re going in.”
GOLF CART JOYRIDING
BEN GORDON DRUMS: “I’m actually the only one that doesn’t play golf, but I certainly go in for the old golf cart. It’s essential at a festival for us to have our own transport – a golf cart, scooter, or whatever – and have a bit of freedom. So that’s certainly one of our pastimes. We’ve tried to take the security guards’ ones before, and they don’t like that – they’re pretty well-monitored. And we don’t want to take advantage of these people’s good nature! But that’s the challenge, isn’t it? Getting one out into the middle of somewhere where it isn’t meant to be. We’ve rolled a few in our time, not gonna lie. It can get out of hand when you start egging each other on. We’ve never managed to ride one out into the crowd at a festival… Although you might have just given me an idea for this summer. Ha ha!”
WINSTON: “Paddleboarding is a good way to spot sharks, put it that way. Recently we’ve had some really clear water at Byron [Bay, in southeast Australia, where Parkway are from], and the last time I went stand-up paddleboarding I could just see the amount of sharks that were around me. That’s pretty disconcerting, especially when you realise there’s only a plastic paddle and a bit of polystyrene that you’re stood on stopping the shark from taking a chomp out of your leg. You kind of have to play statues, because you aren’t going to be able to bat him away with the paddle without falling off. I’ve had a couple brush past me before. It actually makes you realise that sharks are pretty cool, and they aren’t the murderous creatures they’re made out to be. But you feel very, very small.”
WINSTON: “I’ve done free-diving without the oxygen. I went to Mexico with my wife, and they have the most insane underwater cave system that you’ve ever seen, where the volcanic rock has been eaten away underneath. I didn’t have the scuba gear, so I went under these caves and held my breath for about 30 seconds to a minute to get through it. It was absolutely terrifying, but mind-blowing. It’s like going to the moon or something! You feel weightless, and it’s completely pitch black apart from these stalagmites. But still, terrifying – you have no idea how big these caves are! You can look out in front of you and just see this tiny little light, and you realise that it’s someone else in the cave about 100 metres away holding a flashlight. It lights up all the parts of the cave that you can’t see, and the sights are incredible. It’s like an underwater cathedral! I recommend it.”
WINSTON: “We used to just jump off things. But we stopped doing it because… it got a bit mental. I think the highest thing we ever jumped off was about 100 feet. Which is pretty bloody big. It got to the point where we started throwing our friends of first, to see if it was doable. You know, ‘roadie duty!’ and one of our friends wasn’t as good at it as us, and we hyped him up – ‘Come on, man! You can do it!’ And he landed on his back in the surf and we had to go fish him out and take him to hospital! He was OK, but he tore a bunch of muscles in his back, and we felt like a right bunch of dicks! You survive it so long, you think you’re invincible. Oh, man! We seem like such nice guys, too, right? Ha ha!”
“To say I was a bit scared when I did my first skydive for the Vice Grip video is a bit of an understatement . But it’s awesome, and I’m in the process of buying my own gear. The worst part for me was the door opening, because that’s the first time the unrealness of the situation dawns on you. That isn’t something that should be happening, is it? Flying along with the door open! So your brain freaks out. And then they go, ‘Now crawl over and get by that door and jump out!’ and you just can’t handle it. Next thing you know, you’re out and falling, and then you’re on the ground looking up at the sky going, ‘I was just up there and now I’m down here…How did that happen?’ But I challenge anyone, when that door opens, not to shit their pants.”