As the August holidays approach, as a staff outing (which is cost free) we are taken to a Via Ferrata course for a bit of FUN. (?)
Via Ferrata is a protected climbing route placed in multiple areas throughout the Cevenne region and elsewhere, as it’s becoming increasingly popular. The jist of via ferrata is aided rock climbing with steel pegs and a steel cable running the length of the course which enables you to clip yourself on as a safety precaution, and acts as an aid to climbing.
I have never done much climbing, as a child the treehouse was as high as I got, and as an adult it seems the older I get the more heights seem to effect me…I wouldn’t have described myself as afraid of heights, however after this experience I think it’s fair to say that heights + me aren’t a good combo.
We arrive at a beautiful gorge, 1/2 an hour from Florac.
Lucky for us, we are the only ones there so half of us get fitted into harness’s and Dave gives us a safety briefing on how to clip ourselves onto the wires, how to use the ‘pully’ to slide across the wire etc.
Dan goes in the first group- my bum didn’t quite fit the harness handed to me.. this was a real confidence booster!
As Dan sets off, all smiles and laughter, I anxiously wait for my turn.
The course takes around 45 minutes.
My turn comes round faster than expected, I get geared up, mentally prepare myself and take the plunge.. Reaching for the first step.
As I reach the fourth step my hands start to sweat, my eyebrows-which are usually the first to sweat, start to seep… My breath starts to quicken as I look down..down…down… to the river below and I come to a hault.
Dans words of encouragement don’t quite entice me up the sheer rock face, and I decide with much confidence to get down, as it was surprisingly, not my type of fun.
All in all, Via Ferrata is an experience… It’s something I may..may try again another day.