High School at Torrent Falls – Via Ferrata

May 8, 2012

Last night the High School arrived at Camp McKee, a Kentucky Boy Scout Camp, and today was our first day of exploring Red River Gorge. Luckily, Alan (HS Math Teacher) went to college in Lexington Kentucky so we have a on site guide to help plan activities! Today, he led a group to Lexington while the rest of us either went to the Sky Bridge at Natural Bridge State Park, or to climb at the Torrent Falls Via Ferrata.

Via Ferrata are a bit of a cross between rock gyms and outdoor climbing. They were developed during WWI by the Austrians and Italians fought a mountain war in which they bolted steel bars into the mountain walls to help troops make difficult ascents. This has turned into a whole type of climbing, literally the “Way of Iron”. Climbers wear harnesses and clip themselves into a cable that runs the length of the course. Then they ascend, descend, and traverse across the rock while using steel rebar embedded in the rock to assist the climb.

According to the owners at Torrent Falls, it is one of two via ferratas in the whole country (the other being in West Virginia). This via ferrata is divided into 6 different sections, the first couple being relatively easy and the final two fairly strenuous. Enjoy the some of the pictures that we took of the climbing!

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