Take these stairs into the sky
You’re nearing the top. You’re eye level with craggy rock fins, which fiercely jut out of rolling green mountaintops like a boney spine. You can see the expansive treeline hundreds of feet below. Above you, a wall of jagged light grey sandstone extends to the sky. Your sweaty palms clip a shiny carabiner into the next line, your eyes fixed on the rugged peak above.
You’re climbing the Via Ferrata at NROCKS in Circleville, West Virginia.
A Via Ferrata is a system of steel rungs and cables that allows you to safely climb with little or no prior experience. The system was initially designed to transport troops in Italy during World War 1. Now, it’s just an awesome way to get a taste of rock climbing, but with a little of added security.
But security doesn’t mean a snooze fest! Even experienced rock climbers may get a little shaky ascending the rungs of these dueling rock crags… or tiptoeing across the 150-foot high suspension bridge.
Curious? Ready to try it? Here are some things you may want to know:
- You’ll step from steel rung to steel rung to explore the mountain
- The fixed-anchor system allows you to be clipped into at least one cable at all times.
- During the 3.5- to 5-hour climb, you’ll gain 1,085 feet of elevation, trek across a 200-foot-long suspension bridge and reach exposed heights of 280 feet (just think of the views!)
- Almost anyone can enjoy the Via Ferrata. Kids as young as 13 can make the climb, but if you have an intense fear of heights, you may want to steer clear.
- There’s an optional challenge at the end for the most adventurous climbers. The NRocks “Head Wall” serves up an additional 100 feet of vertical climbing.
What do you think? Ready for an adventure?