Whether you’ve got children looking for a fun science project or you’re just a kid at heart, building a snow volcano is a great way to get outside and enjoy a cold winter season. This revamped version of a classic experiment lets you say good-bye to spending hours crafting a fake volcano out of paper mache…all you really need is a little bit of snow. As you’re about to find out, it’s quick, easy, and a blast.
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The first thing you’ll need to do is gather the proper materials. There are several ways to send a little foam blasting out of a volcano, but the easiest and most environmentally-friendly method is to use a 2-liter of soda and some Mentos. The Mentos will have a physical reaction with the carbonated beverage, pushing the liquid into the air in geyser form. Generally, diet sodas work better and don’t leave you with the same sugary mess.
- 2-Liter – We opted for Diet Crush, mostly because it looks like lava and is the OutThere Colorado Orange.
- Mentos – You can find these at almost any convenience store or gas station around the country. If you’re only doing the experiment once, a single tube should be fine.
- Building Tools – If you’re moving a good amount of snow, you’ll need a shovel and some gloves to make it easier. We used our metal-toothed and collapsable DMOS Stealth shovel because it was easy carry with us into the field and the hard teeth were perfect for shaping our mound of snow.
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1. Find Some Powder
Since you’ll be building a volcano, you’ll need to find a spot where it’s easy to pile up the snow. This means find somewhere that’s flat covered by at least a couple inches of fluffy powder. We built ours at over 10,000 feet above sea level on Pikes Peak.
2. Build a Mound
Building the mound of snow can be as easy as simply piling it. We found that the hard teeth of our DMOS made it easy to drag the snow into a mound quickly, which we later shaped. Just make sure you don’t make the top point of the volcano. If you do that now, it will just get smashed down later.
3. Insert Your Unscrewed 2-Liter
If your snow is fluffy like ours was, this step is as easy as smashing the 2-liter down into the top of our mound. It might cause a little deformation of your snow pile, but this is a quick fix. Make sure you’ve already unscrewed the cap of your bottle. This will make it easier to take off when you’re ready to put the Mentos in, and it will prevent a premature explosion of carbonation that’s already built up in the bottle.
4. Finish the Mound
Now that your 2-liter is in place, it’s time to build the volcano point around the cap. Build this up to the point where it hides the bottles opening, but be careful not to get snow into the bottle. To prevent this from happening, it helps if you put the cap back on loosely after unscrewing it for the first time.
5. Remove the Cap
This step is simple. Just take the cap off without messing up the snow volcano you’ve built. If you’ve already unscrewed it, this won’t be a problem. Just make sure you didn’t rescrew it back on too tight.
6. Plop in those Mentos
The easiest way to do this without a funnel is to simply form a cup with your hand and put a few Mentos into it. While having more Mentos will cause a bigger reaction, having too many will slow you down, making it more likely that you’ll get soaked. We put 5 Mentos into our bottle. Simply fold your hand to drop them in as quickly as possible
7. Enjoy the Explosion
Once those Mentos touch the liquid, that blast is only a second or so away. Make sure you hop out of the way with haste or you’ll risk being covered in a sticky mess.
So there you have it. That’s how you build an awesome snow volcano in only a few minutes. If you try this one out, tag us in your pictures. We’d love to see how it goes!
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We know you want to see it in slo-mo. Here’s the clip from our Instagram story. Follow us at @outtherecolorado for more live content from our shoots!
*This article was sponsored by DMOS Collective. For more information about their portable snow shovels, check out their website. If you’re interested in learning more about their newest product, the Alpha shovel, a larger model than our Stealth, check out their Indiegogo page.
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