Backcountry Hikes: Via Ferrata at Torrent Falls


GPS: 37°44'N 83°32'W

“Iron route,” the English translation of via ferrata, hardly evokes the raw excitement of navigating a mountain trail along fixed ladders, bridges, and cables. Perhaps that’s why the folks at Torrent Falls Scenic Resort in Kentucky stuck with the original. Clip on to the Via Ferrata’s cable, then take off on a 3,400-foot (1,036-meter) traverse around a horseshoe-shaped cliff while suspended as far as 90 feet (27 meters) off the ground. You’ll ascend a vertical to occasionally overhanging rock face using handholds and steel rungs, then slip behind a seasonal waterfall and cross a swaying suspension bridge.

Vitals: $32;

Originally published in the April 2008 edition of National Geographic Adventure

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