Ouray Via Ferrata

Features of the Ouray Via Ferrata include:

  • approximately 4000+ linear feet of anchored cable protected / rung enhanced trail
  • two technical exits of approximately 200 feet each
  • one 35′ long cable wire bridge across the Uncompahgre Gorge at the South end start of the route
  • one ascending “Sky Bridge” at the North end of the route spanning the gorge for approximately 75′ at 35 degrees in angle
  • wide variety of vertical and horizontal route sections with interesting and varied movement designed, implemented, and installed by local climbing professionals and engineers
  • a fantastic opportunity to experience the beauty and majesty of the world famous Uncompahgre Gorge in the summer time!

    Ouray Via Ferrata – The Rules

    The Ouray Via Ferrata course features many different elements designed for both progression and protection. Horizontal tensioned cables (Italian Style), diagonal and vertical J-loop cables (French Style), 3-wire and 4-wire aerial cable bridges, steel climbing rungs, foot pedals, and natural rock climbing holds.

    Hours of Operation: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm; 7 days a week

    Minimum Required Equipment on the Ouray Via Ferrata include:

    • EN958 Certified Via Ferrata Energy Absorbing System (EAS)
    • EN12492 Certified Helmet – Mountaineering
    • EN 12277 Certified Harness – Mountaineering
    • Use of non-certified or improvised equipment may result in death or serious injury

    Ouray Via Ferrata: Additional Guidelines

    • Climbers weighing less than 88 lbs or more than 265 lbs must utilize a supplemental belay system on sections with significant vertical climbing. All climbing rungs and cable bolts are approved belay points, DO NOT belay anchored to the cable.
    • The route is one-way, from South to North. Designated passing areas are available on the route – slower parties are requested to allow faster parties to “play through” where safe and appropriate. Clipping around climbers is easily done at flat sections. DO NOT DISCONNECT FROM THE CABLE TO PASS!
    • No more than two users on a single span of safety cable between anchors – maintain proper spacing!
    • The route requires significant arm and leg strength and should only be attempted by fit and healthy persons. Anyone under 16 years of age requires adult accompaniment. There is one emergency bail point before the Sky Ladder – it is a vertical climb up and out to a trail above the canyon
    • There are many elevated high exposure areas – persons with a fear of heights should carefully consider if this is an appropriate activity
    • Any individual or child attempting the route must have a minimum reach of 62″ from the ground
    • ALWAYS travel with BOTH lanyard carabiners attached to the cable. Transfer one lanyard carabiner at a time when passing bolts. Climbing rungs may be used as intermediate lanyard connections for longer reaches between cable sections if needed
    • A minimum of one leash must be attached to the safety cable at all times on the Via Ferrata from beginning to end. NEVER unclip both leash leads at the same time!
    • Climbing slings, tethers, and other improvised “leash” connections are not acceptable and are dangerous
    • The route is approximately 1.25 KM long and takes between 2 and 3.5 hours to complete. It requires several crossings of the canyon on bare wire cable bridges and has extensive climbing and descending on rungs and sheer cliffs
    • User assumes all risk from use
    • In case of emergency call 911