Jared Frank, 22, from Regina, Canada, took the risky selfie on the Inca Trail in Peru – the train route that runs from Cusco to the ‘Lost City of the Incas’ at Machu Picchu.
He was visiting the region with a friend, and wanted to take a snap of himself with one of the route’s iconic blue and yellow trains passing in the background.
But as the train passed, a conductor leaned out and delivered a swift kick to the side of Frank’s head, sending him reeling.
“I tried to take a selfie while a train passed a “safe” distance behind,” he wrote on his YouTube channel.
“I guess I was still too close and got kicked in the head.”
There’s been some speculation about the motivations of the train conductor on social website Reddit.
Many believe the conductor was being a hero, punting Frank out of the way of a piece of metal protruding from the side of the train which would have taken his head off.
Others, including a user known as ARCHA1C, suggest” “It would be somewhat satisfying to kick such an idiot in the head.”
There’s also the possibility that the whole thing could be a hoax – which Frank strongly denies.
While the location seems legitimate – the colour scheme of the train matches the Inca Trail livery, and you can’t fake the grand vistas of Peru – we wouldn’t put it past US talk show host Jimmy Kimmel to have set the whole thing up.
The late night prankster has responsible for similar hoaxes that left news organisations red-faced, including a widely shared video of a woman setting fire to her own legs while twerking upside down and a video apparently showing a wolf in a Sochi Olympic Village hotel room.