Day 127 on the Road
Via Ferrata with Wildwire Wanaka
Today we are via ferrata climbing with Wildwire Wanaka! If you like this video and want to see more 365 Days: 365 Activities, then head on over to our awesome YouTube Channel!
Ok so we are in Wanaka with Wildwire today.
It is a glorious morning for our first day in Wanaka and Laura quickly grabs herself a coffee and me a hot chocolate for the sweet teeth I am and we are joining Mark and the team from Wildwire for an epic adventure today. We are going to be climbing the Twin Falls of Wanaka.
We are in Wanaka with Wildwire we are about to climb this 300m waterfall. Absolutely terrified. I thought this was a waterfall hike, so… I’m really excited. I can’t wait. So the feel among the group is a little bit mixed to say the least we have some very stressed people including myself which is a little bit scared of heights. and some really pumped people including Laura which is so excited about making her way all the way toward the waterfall.
But our guide today is Mark he is a know it all of the climbing world he has over 10 years experience of mountaineering and climbing including even some climbing expeditions in the Arctic which I did not even know had mountains so needless to say we are in safe hands today.
The type of climbing we’re gonna be doing today is via ferrata which is following a steel cable along a route using these metal footholds and pegs to use for climbing. It was used back in the day to get the troups in world war 1 over the steep European Alps and Mark is using this very same system to actually climb this huge waterfall. And the really awesome thing about this via ferrata system is that literally anyone can do it. As long as you can climb a ladder you can pretty much do this course. So mark says that even people aged 7 years old to 78 years old have managed to do this course which is really cool. It’s a really fun parkour style obstacle course that we’re kind of doing around the waterfall. We have to pass among wires we have to climb some metal ladders. It’s really fun and really challenges us to push ourselves to our own limit I’m personally really scared of heights but every single time I get another obstacle I’m really keen to challenge myself and make it through despite the fact that we are climbing quite high. But we’re pretty safe we’re literally just have to manage our little calibers that we clip on certain sections of the course so in case we fall we are never going to fall more than a metre. Plus the views are absolutely fantastic I’ve never felt like being so close to a waterfall.
Today we are doing the tour called the Wild Thing and despite its name it’s only the medium level challenge that we are tackling today. There are 3 different levels that are available in Wildwire and it goes up to 1000m above the waterfall. today the Wild Thing is going to take us about 300m but trust me it’s already a real challenge. And it’s already quite a challenge on top of the fear of heights which is from time to time paralyzing me we have to make our way across waterfalls on really steep rock cliffs as well as through a lot of ladders while managing cables as well as our caribiners to keep ourselves safe. There is a lot to do right here which takes a lot of brain power as well as physical power it’s a lot of fun but every single step we’re feeling a sense of accomplishment. It’s awsome.
However, some people in our group are a little bit more scared than others and it takes all of Mark’s encouragement and motivational speak to take them moving and honestly he’s doing an amazing job because I’m not the one crying right here but his words are pushing me forward and you know what that is what stopped me from crying and shitting my pants on this really steep rock cliff.
Meanwhile, luckily I ma not afraid of heights so I get the time to actually embrace this amazing environment that we’re in. The Twin Falls are absolutely stunning and they seem to go on forever. And surrounding us we have mountain views and when we get high enough we can even see Lake Wanaka. I’m also taking the time to chat to this other girl on the tour called Marika who is a German working holidaymaker and we’re having a lot of fun at the back of the group sort of shaking some cables here and there to see if it gives Robin a fright which it does.
Every once in a while during our climb we have some flat sections where we take the time to take a breather it feels great to be able to stop and relax a little bit in between all those ladder climbing and monkey bridge bridging. This is only at those times that I take the time to embrace the place that we are climbing on. The Waterfall is spectacularly high. It’s incredible how tall this thing is and the views behind us are absolutely stellar as well. it’s a true pleasure to be right among those elements. We’re about halfway through the trip right now. The view is pretty stunning. Laura and Marika are just chatting together casually and I’m terrified as hell. And on top of it we are falling behind because we’re taking way too many pictures. So maybe we should stop filming and start going… what she said.
So moving on we are onto the last section of this climb and by this point we really got used to the gear that we’re using and using all the caribiners. We’ve really been kited out with everything we need on this tour including a pretty flash harness with three caribiners a helmet and even a handy water bottle just to clip onto our harness as well and my favourite part of this whole outfit is the fingerless gloves. I feel like an action hero in these gloves.
For me one of the major highlights of this Wildwire tour are the multiple crossings that go across the waterfalls because of this zigzag course that makes its way up the waterfall. I love all the different types of bridges we’re going across as well these wire bridges and then there’s classic swing bridges that wobble as we go and below us we see nothing but the abyss.
I just realised that the waterfall we just crossed is one of the most tumultuous I have seen so far in New Zealand. It’s gushing with glacial water.
After climbing for over 2 hours we are getting much more confident in what we’re doing we are taking the time to take some breaks. Taking some sip of water, playing around with each other it’s a really really fun climb from now on. It took wee while to get used to the climb to be quite honest because of the whole feeling of being super high and also being always having to hold onto something not to fall to our doom but finally once we are managing that we can fully embrace and enjoy the tour.
Once we reach the highest point on our tour today we take the time to have some snacks that are included in the tour we fill up our water bottles and just embrace these amazing views from the top of the waterfall.
Next thing we have to do though is make our way back down so we’re going to be taking a track that Mark likes to call the Deer Track literally because it seems to be formed by deers. It takes us along the side of the waterfall not only giving us amazing new perspective of where we’ve just been but also makes it a lot quicker to make our way back down. It’s only when we get all the way down from the waterfall that we can fully embrace the sheer size of the climb that we have accomplished today and Mark takes the time to point us out where we went through which kind of the parkour we did and how high we actually ended up finishing to tour. It really didn’t feel that low but we only finished the tour halfway there so I just can’t even imagine what it is like to go all the way up. I can’t wait to be back.
Don’t you think it’s a wild wire. You have to tame it it’s almost untamed. You’re gonna knock me off here. It’s a wild wire. Nice. Only in wanaka. Ooo. The wild wire needs to be tamed. Ooo relax. Good one good one. It’s still shaking it’s still shaking. Good one. That’s how you tame a wild wire. There’s plenty of wild wire to be found in Wanaka. Oh my god.