A great Via Ferrata up a huge escarpment
A great Via Ferrata up a huge escarpment near Meringam.
some text translated loosely form Viaferrata.org
Characteristics: Over two days, the walk of approach is a little long. Road with payage: Frs. 10 - -, reserve your bed before leaving. Difficulty: D Quotation: Not very Difficult = child and beginner; D, Difficult = for well accompanied beginner; D+, higher Difficulty = for accustomed people; TD = physical for the very accustomed people
Well, although above from the Viaferrata.org website seems to suggest its long and for two days, both times I have done this route were in a day.
The route from where you park to the start is a long traverse winding through some very nice scenary. The Via ferrata took us four or five hours on both occasions in damp (cloudy) conditions.
The mountain top is probably going to have snow on, so be advised.
You can see by the pictures its a grand place, I just wish I had gotten to do it on a clear day.............
: Translated From Viaferrata.org
By the road
: Lyon-Geneva, A 40; Geneva-Lausanne N1, in Vevez to take the direction Bern, Basle N12; then to take the direction Interlaken N6; in Interlaken to take Méringen-Furen.
Contactez les CFF, pour les horaires et le tarif.
One reaches the begining by a small paying road, Wow, you really are in Switzerland... arrive in the carpark of Birchlaui then on for 20 min on foot with the refuge in site after 20 minutes or from the station of the cable car located on the left of the road a little after Furen. From there follow the North-western path marked out to the refuge of Tällihutte
Where to sleep
: Refuge of Tällihutte, 20 places open from semi June to at the end of October, Frs. 20 - - per anybody, Tel. 033 975 14 10. Out of Switzerland ++ 41 33 975 14 10
Upon the arrival at the bottom of an impressive and foreboding wall of rock, gently carresed with grassy ledges, the first part becomes visible. From the little mound of grass the path ends at, you will just make out the first protection, in the form of cable and metal pegs. Also just above a ladder. The departure is equipped with a rather impressive scale. A little later the wall becomes less tilted, then again the rocks are drawn up like a wall. The route threads between the rocks. With the third of the course, you will reach a cave with a small bench. Further, you will be suspended on vertical scales above the vacuum. To remain well aware of your position when you pass from one ladder to the other... Sign the gold book which is located in the cave, and do not forget to sign it.
The route starts on metal pegs, has many ladders, some in spectacular positions, some easy scrambles, some wide grassy ledges, and indeed some very narrow grassy ledges.
Some of the positions are indeed very airy, but always protected.
Descent: denivellation of 500 - 600 m towards north. Count a good hour, then a path more where less flat towards the SO during another good hour with finally remontee towards the collar of Satteli (2119m).Finalement redescente towards Tallihutte in 45 min.
A Via Ferrata climb must be made safer for the climber by the use of purpose made gear.
The method of atatchment to the route is a usually a pair of karabinas and slings on a harness.A normal harness, or some prefer to add chest harness too. The special equipment such as the Petzl Zyper-Y, are to prevent shock loading to the falling climber. This is either done by the gear having a built in friction device or stitching that unravells in the event of sudden loading.
Tough fingerless gloves reinforced and padded palm and a stretch lycra and mesh back. Designed to stop you damaging your hands on cables and ladders whilst still retaining dexterity.
Clothing is tailored to the weather and area and may include Ice Axe and Crampons
Via Ferrata tips
1) Loose rock - use a correct self-belaying system to protect slips and falls; wear a helmet.
2) Stone fall - often caused by other climbers,wear a helmet.
Corroded or missing ladder rungs or fixings - be vigilant, test doubtful rungs before placing all your weight on them, use a correct self-belaying
3) Damaged wire ropes - wear gloves to protect against broken strands.
These must be of a material that will grip the rope for example leather, NOT woollen.
4) Protection that has gone missing - consider carrying a rope and some climbing gear.
5) Snow and ice - check the condition of the route before you start. Take an ice-axe and crampons if ice is a possibility.
6) Bad weather - check the weather forecast, start early in the day as thunderstorms are more likely in the afternoon.
7) Poor visibility - careful navigation using map, compass and waymarks.
8) Lightning - The recommendation for this has long been; 'In a thunderstorm get away from iron ladders and wire ropes' but this means free climbing which may not be a safe alternative. Do NOT start a via ferrate climb if lightening is possible.
WHAT TO WEAR
Ranges from shorts and a T-shirt to almost full winter gear depending on the weather and the altitude. Always be prepared for a change of weather, and for higher, colder winds at altitude.
This is me, just changing from one ladder to the next, high up on the climb. Nigel in blue has just traversed accross a wonderfully long drop.........