World’s highest “via ferrata” now on Mount Kinabalu!

While poking through the net, surfing around technorati, I found a very interesting blog post by kenjj about the newest adventure on Mount Kinabalu – via ferrata. So, what is via ferrata?

A via ferrata (Italian for “iron road”. Plural vie ferrate. In German, klettersteig) is a mountain route which is equipped with fixed cables, stemples, ladders, and bridges. The use of these allows otherwise isolated routes to be joined to create longer routes which are accessible to people with a wide range of climbing abilities. Walkers and climbers can follow via ferratas without needing to use their own ropes and belays, and without the risks associated with unprotected scrambling and climbing. – Wikipedia

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

I found out that there is a new company which provides the adventure activities – Mountain Torq – that was just started on September 2007 (only running for about three months). The interesting thing about them is that, they have given Mount Kinabalu climbers other options of activities and accommodations, apart from the usual climb up and down Low’s Peak.

Lucky for me, while checking up their new website on this new thing on Mount Kinabalu, I found out that their main office in Kota Kinabalu is just across the street of my clinic. I went there last Monday during lunch time, and fortunately, I-Gek, their sales & marketing director was there.

We just have an informal conversation on our passion about Mount Kinabalu, and how hard it is to get a slot to climb nowadays. Apparently, they are very busy, as they are going to have their launching ceremony this Saturday, 15th December 2007 at Kinabalu Park.

During that short period of time, I managed to get more information pertaining the climb, the activities and the accommodation that they provide. In summary, these are the things that we ought to know at the moment:

  1. Pendant Hut, Laban RataThey have a newly build hut/lodges on Laban Rata – Pendant Hut, which is non-heated, bunk-beds that could accommodate 30 climbers. This is a good options for climbers who could not get through to SSL for bed. However, they have set their own rule; if you are planning to stay in their hut – you have to, at least, pick one of their activities on their via ferrata, apart from the usual Low’s Peak trip.
  2. They are the only sole provider for via ferrata, equipments and staffs, and they are not related to SSL.
  3. You have three options of via ferrata that you could choose – Walk the Torq, The Low’s Peak Circuit and The Preamble. More coming soon!
  4. As they ONLY provide the activities, you have to book for accommodation in Pendant Hut from their designated travel & tour company. This also means that you still can do their activities although you stay in one of SSL’s huts in Laban Rata.
  5. Having said the above, they welcome ‘Walk-ins’ at either Laban Rata / or at Pendant hut. It will be on a first come first serve basis and weather permitting.
  6. They are the world’s highest and Asia’s first via ferrata located at 3,800m, offers a range of routes designed to match everyone’s ability and endurance.
  7. They did not disclose the pricing structure. You need to contact them to ask for quotations. *Please mention my name/website/blog when you contact them. You may get a special treatment for mentioning it. And they will know how powerful blogging-advertising works!

This new activities has made Mount Kinabalu more interesting than just up-down climb. And I am now working on how to work together with them to promote their activities in my website and blog. Stay tune for more info.

For those who are going to be at the foot of the mountain (Kinabalu Park) this Saturday, 15th December 2007, just drop by their launching ceremony. I won’t be able to be there. Send my regards to them if you happen to crash in their party.

Need I say more? Just check out their photos which I have extracted from their website (I got permission on this. Thanks, I-Gek!). Cheers!

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

Via ferrata on Mount Kinabalu

 

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39 thoughts on “World’s highest “via ferrata” now on Mount Kinabalu!

  1. It’s by request. They did not reveal the fee on their website for “security” purposes. You need to drop them an email for more information on the fee.

  2. leong, u can find their leaflet (with pricing) in Sabah Tourism office (old post office). There are a few packages. The 2D1N climb to Low’s Peak is RM270 something, if i am correct…

  3. Hi Murphy,
    I checked with them, and the leaflet in Sabah Tourism is their 2007 promotional price! Which means that you only have less than 15 more days to do it! Also that price is only for the activity.

    I tried it out and it is awesome!!! To tell the truth, compared to what I had to pay for a via ferrata in New Zealand, this is really value for money since it is the world’s highest , their high level of customer service and how they looked after me!

    Savera

  4. Hi Jusdy, Murphy,

    How come Mountain Torq quoted me at higher price?
    My climbing date will be on April 2008.
    The reply was :-

    ——Because you already booked your accommodations, this is our price for ACTIVITY only.

    Low’s Peak Circuit: RM 340.00 per Person.

    Anybody else got the cheaper price ?

    Rgds,

  5. Hey!! They are the ONLY operator there that is taking their rubbish down the mountain. They themselves are worried about keeping the mountain clean!!! They told me that themselves

    Savera

  6. Hi Savera,

    Thank you for your comments. Hopefully they will always be responsible for the cleanliness of the mountain.

    I am not that worried about rubbish that is produced in the lodges, but the rubbish that is thrown by litter bugs on the 8.5km trail…

  7. hi there..!
    thank you for this journal.
    i added your website to my blog.
    hope you don’t mind..

    i myself is hoping to do go up via ferrata one day..

    p/s: i heard the cost is going up this year 2008,is it true?

  8. Anyone knows the owner of SSL? I find it unacceptable that they package their accomodation and food and charge a bomb with it. Surely locals deserve a cheaper price?

    People nowadays are getting more greedy.

  9. So who owns Sutera Harbour? Been searching through out the whole wide web….

    Can someone enlightened me?

    And is this your blog drizad? Where is your main page? Would like to blogroll you…

    Take care!

  10. Hai guys,

    I’m going next week. so excited. just want to know whether it’s really cold in the summit.

  11. Hi was just wondering which route are those done on for the via feratta?

    By anychance it was the Walk the Torq or it is the Low Peak Circuit?

    Any idea what does the low peak circuit does?

  12. Thanks for the information……….appreciate lots……………
    Any idea what is done on the Walk the Torq??? Do we still get to climb on the rocks like those pictures as well??? or it’s just walking on ground?

  13. Hi all,
    – Preamble doesn’t climb up to the summit, only do the via ferrata
    – Walk the torq & low’s peak circuit : summit climb + via ferrata
    -http://ecotravelogue.com/category/via-ferrata/-

    i’m climbing next year. Kinda difficult coz my group has a mixture of fitness.

  14. Hi,
    I did the via ferrata on the 23 march recently. I did the Low’s peak circuit. It was a fantastic experience. I must say you must be very fit if you intend to climb the peak, do the via ferrata and descend on the same day. It was more difficult than I thought but I manage to complete the circuit in 5 hours. The Mountain Torq guide told us that we should have stayed an extra night before decending but my advice is to complete to whole thing in one day. The reason is your whole body will ache so much that you will walk like a robot the next day. It will be worse when you sleep over it. Just imagine having to climb all the way down to the foothill when even moving small steps makes you want to groan. I’m glad we did’nt take their advice. Anybody who wants extra challenge should try via ferrata. The view is just breath taking. Absolutely magnificent. I will try the Preamble circuit the next time. Have fun people : )

  15. Hi,
    to those who have been there, can we bring our own shoes and harness there?
    How much is the equipment rental? Or all included in the package?

  16. @Anne: They will provide harness, rope, helmet, carabiners and lanyards. You have to bring your own shoes and gloves. The equipment rental is included in the package.

  17. Hi I’m doing the trek tomorrow but coming back with a group next year of 18 people really interested in doing the via ferrata any ideas of current cost!! The trek is turning out way too expensive for a large group as we have to do the 3day 2 night trek as we have to book in advance being a large group, does the same apply to the via ferrata ? Thanks

  18. @Khaironisaq

    I wonder how much differences is between one day hike and two days climb via ferata route, technically and cost wise. Does they differ much?

    Doing a day uphill and descent is like one of my long term goal..

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