World’s highest “via ferrata” – Newsfeed from New Sabah Times

KUNDASANG, 16 December 2007: Mountain Torq Via Ferrata, a mountain path (via ferrata is Italian for iron road) which opened here yesterday has been certified by the Malaysia Book of Records (MBOR) as the world’s highest and Asia’s first.

It is at an altitude of 3,800 metres on the 4,095-metre Mount Kinabalu, Southeast Asia’s highest summit.

The Via Ferrata, a climbing facility named and built by Adventure Factors Mountaineering Centre Sdn Bhd, would further elevate the tourism industry’s service standard and enhance Sabah’s reputation as a world-class adventure destination, said Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun.

(A via ferrata is basically a long climbing route with permanently fixed cables for protection. Steel rungs are used on steeper sections to keep the difficulty of the climbing moderate).

“The tourism industry is a highly aggressive field as we are also competing with other countries for the same customers.

“To stay competitive, we need to keep abreast of the current and future needs of this ever evolving industry and respond to the demands of the increasingly sophisticated travellers,” he said in his speech at the opening of Mountain Torq Via Ferrata at Kinabalu Park here.

The text of his speech was read out by his political secretary Datuk Amisah Yasin.

The Mountain Torq, with various alternative routes, enables people of all ages to enjoy climbing Mount Kinabalu’s rock faces, giving them a chance to view the mountain from different angles, said Eric Wong, Adventure Factors Mountaineering Centre director.

Over the past 30 years, Mount Kinabalu’s climbers’ aim has been to climb up and come down in two days after having conquered the summit.

All they could remember was the gruelling five to eight hours hike up, sleepless nights, trying to catch the sunrise and coming down from the mountain.

“We felt we need to give Mount Kinabalu the respect that it deserves as a full-fledged mountain. So we came up with the idea of developing Mount Kinabalu into a mountaineering centre for Southeast Asia,” he said.

Wong said the Mountain Torq Via Ferrata, comprising rungs and cables embracing the mountain’s rock face, allows access to scenic sections of the summit normally accessible only to rock climbers and mountaineers.

Resources: New Sabah Times

World’s highest “via ferrata”
Congratulations…Amisah (right) presents the MBOR certificate to Eric

9 thoughts on “World’s highest “via ferrata” – Newsfeed from New Sabah Times

  1. Via Ferrata have just released their prices for next year; a 30% increase, The only reason that makes sense for this is the fact that SSL (Sutera Sanctuary Lodges, the company that has a monopoly on the mountain and manages it in a draconian and exploitative way) have put up thier prices by 30% A coincidence?
    This is a world heritage site and Mountain Torq had plenty of breaks to get thier operation up and running, why are they making it so expensive unless they are simply jumping on the corrupt SSL bandwagon and aiming to make as much cash as possible? even at the expense of pricing out the average travellers so that only the wealthy people can afford it.
    As far as I know real climbers are usually not wealthy and make a big effort to do these enriching things, possibly getting more from the experience than other tourists. I assume that Mountain torq is made up of climbers, or is it just money-grabbers?
    Sorry to be so down on the operation but this is reprehensible behaviour and should be exposed.

  2. Dear Emma,
    Thanks for voicing your views in such a uncensored manner. There are a few things that we’ll like you to clarify with regards to your allegations. Please show concrete proof and not based on hearsay:
    1. Provide proof that Mountain Torq has released our 2009 rates as of the date of your comments
    2. Provide the website of your travel company whom I believe is targeting only the wealthy people
    3. Provide the minimum % of mark up that your company levy on your customers and your defense on why you levy such mark ups, including places, services and products which you buy directly off your providers.

    Due to professional courtesy from Mountain Torq, we will refrain from mentioning your company name at this point. But we welcome you to be transparent and factual in your comments

    We look forward to your professional reply.

    Mt Torq team

  3. I-Gek

    Provide proof? er, why? I am not stating that any prices have been released or otherwise, it was never an issue, the prices themselves are at issue here.

    The companies that I work with are operating in a competitive environment so their prices are realistic and not part of a monopoly. Thier clients have a choice.

    Emma

  4. Emma,
    You mentioned in your thread on the 18th of Aug:

    “Via Ferrata have just released their prices for next year; a 30% increase”

    Please proof the above mentioned statement.

    It was based on that statement that you made your views on.

  5. @ Emma Juniper:

    I think it is better for both of you to settle professionally, and use the proper channel to solve the issue. While all of us can discuss the issue here in this blog, I don’t think it will come up with a good solution for all of us.

  6. Understood drizad. It is just the fact that I have been sent a copy of thier new prices and perhaps should not have been, you will notice that they do not dispute the increase itself.
    i will no longer pursue this here.

    Emma

  7. Hi Drizad,
    I agree with you and with this last comment I will close this thread from my end.

    Emma,
    For the record Mountain Torq has NOT sent out to any agents any rates officially or non officially for 2009. This is a fact as of the 20th of August 2008!!

    Therefore, there was no need for Mountain Torq to dispute a non existing Rate.

    Regards

  8. I don’t really know about this but my sister in law is really interested with this kind of outdoor sport and she was telling me that mount kinabalu’s having the toughest route in the world. I am Sabahan originally but I really have no idea about this (shame on me 🙂 – sorry) Maybe you could provide me some information of whom I should contact with.

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