I completed my first via ferrata last year whilst in Banff (you can read about that experience here) and was left craving more. There’s definitely something about making it to the top of a mountain that I find rewarding; it’s a satisfying moment of self accomplishment. Oh, and I suppose it could also have something to do with the incredible views around me.
But what is a via ferrata? Before I’d actually done one, I’d never even heard the words “via ferrata” let alone knew what they meant. It’s actually Italian for “iron path” and each route, although the vary, usually consists of metal, ladder-like rungs in the rock face and a cable to attach your harness too. It’s essentially a safer (and easier) version of mountain climbing, making it accessible for people like myself who may be a little wary of grabbing a rope and heading off solo.
However, don’t be fooled into thinking via ferratas are “easy” or for the “light hearted”, depending on the difficulty of the route, there can still be some hair raising edges to hang off. And enough photo opportunities to add some excitement to your Insta!
The climb to the top of Whistler Mountain took around four hours all in all. It starts halfway up the mountain, so there’s a short gondola ride up included in the price. Then it’s walking boots on and into harnesses, before setting off to find the start point.
Even though we did this climb during the summer month of July, there was still a good amount of snow/ice nearer the top which we needed to climb over in order to follow our route. But despite the snow I did still manage to get sunburn whilst completing my trip, so defo make sure you’ve sun creamed up before you set out!
And, finally! After a few hours climb, a snack break and a dozen photo stops cause “omfg-look-at-the-view”, we reached the top of Whistler mountain and boy was it a sight to behold. I could honestly never grow tired of looking out across a horizon filled with breathtaking mountains. I had my fingers crossed that one of the 374 photos on my camera roll would somehow capture the sight in front of me.
As to getting back down, it’s just the case of a ski-lift back to the original starting point and then the gondola back down to the bottom! Nice and easy to give your legs a rest. Plus, I definitely needed some downtime to pour over the photos I had just taken!
You can check out the via ferrata I did here.
Have any of you ever completed a via ferrata?
If so, where did you do it? And did you enjoy it?
I’d love to know!
Thanks for reading 🙂