With the newly established Via Ferrata on Mount Kinabalu, Malaysian Borneo has:
- The world's highest via ferratta, at 3800m
- South East Asia's first mountaineering training center
If you are planning an ascent of Mt Kinabalu don't miss the opportunity to try the world's highest via ferrata, explore the various peaks of Mt Kinabalu from the ways of a sports/rock climber, and discover what it's like to descend from a rope.
If you are interested in sports/rock climbing, please Contact Us for more information.
In addition to the unique via ferrata you can enjoy a whole host of outdoor activities such as alpine rock climbing, rappelling and basic mountain experience - camp out in the mountain wilderness and learn basic survival skills. Discover Borneo has routes and programs to match every ability.
- More on the Ferrata Adventure, Mt Kinabalu
- A via ferrata (or 'iron road' in Italian, plural via ferrate) is a mountain path consisting of a series of rungs, rails and cables embracing the rock face. It allows access to scenic sections of the mountains that are typically available only to rock climbers and mountaineers. The excitement, scenic beauty and personal conquest you'll experience on a via ferrata is guaranteed to give you an invigorating and memorable experience.
- You don't need to be an experienced mountain climber to go up the Via Feratta: one just needs an adventurous spirit and no fear of heights!!!
- History of Via Ferrata
- The first via ferrate were built in the Dolomite mountain region of northern Italy during the First World War, to aid the movement of military troops. In 1917, the Italians (as part of the alliance formed by Britain, France and Russia) were fighting a ferocious war with the Austrians in the Dolomites. Amidst harsh winter conditions and an escalating casualty toll, both sides tried to gain control of the peaks to site observation posts and field guns. To help troops move about at high altitude, permanent lines were fixed to rock faces and ladders were installed so that soldiers could ascent steep faces. These were the first via ferrate.
- In 1936, the first via ferrata created for tourists was built by the Italian Alpine Club (a club that traditionally promotes mountaineering). Today the Dolomites probably still have the greatest number of via ferrate. The wartime networks of via ferrate have been restored and many new routes added. Steel cables have replaced the ropes and iron ladders and metal rungs have taken the place of flimsy wooden constructions used by the Italian troops.
- An activity for everyone
- Today, the via ferrata is devised to give people with little or no climbing experience access to rock faces normally reached by mountaineers and rock climbers. At Mnt Kinabalu, the world's highest and Asia's first via ferrata, routes are designed with beginner to intermediate climbers in mind. The beginner's route will let the climber take their first experience along the granite walls of Mt Kinabalu, while the intermediate routes will take the climber on 3 - 4 hour journeys to experience the mountain's breathtaking heights and sights. The diversity of via ferrata routes means there is something for everyone - whether he or she is 10 or 70, a keen mountaineer or a casual holidaymaker.
- Discover Borneo provides accommodation at its two mountain huts, Pendant Hut and Sayat Sayat Hut exclusively for participants of the activities.
- Located at 3,270m above sea level, Pendant Hut is a cozy, eco-friendly hut with 30 dormitory-style bunk beds and a small kitchen catering exclusively to the guests. From the hut, you will have easy access to our activities and even watch via ferrata climbers on the Panar Laban rock face! It is also where the mountain top sales office and pre-activity briefings are based. Beds at Pendant Hut will be prioritized for via ferrata participants.
- Sayat Sayat Hut, located at 3,668m, is a traditional mountain hut with basic facilities and a self-service kitchen. It has 10 dormitory-style bunk beds and caters mainly to participants of Discover Borneo's other activities, such as mountain camping.
- To ensure a safe and enjoyable experience on the via ferrata, activity trainers at Mountain Torq will recommend a suitable route based on your fitness level. As with all outdoor sports, there are safety issues to watch out for. The exposure, altitude and challenges associated with a mountain environment will always be there so do take note of the following:
- The basic safety rule of via ferrata is to use the self-protection system. This means to ensure that at least one of your carabiners is always clipped onto the main cable, which serves as a lifeline.
- Wear comfortable sports/hiking shoes and check your equipment before leaving (helmet, harness, lanyard etc, provided by Discover Borneo).
- Always make sure you bring warm clothing, some snacks and water.
- Start out early so that you will have more time to enjoy the scenery along the way.
NB Rock climbing is also offered on bolted limestone walls at the Royal Mulu Resort, and at the Fairy Caves, Bau, near Kuching.