As I hang over the waterfall, I watch the water rush past me. I haven’t fallen, I have decided to do this for fun, in several places, on this via ferrata route in Wanaka, New Zealand to add a bit more adrenaline. I am climbing vertically beside the waterfall feeling free but still held in place by a harness and a metal rope. This is a via ferrata route next to a 60 metre waterfall, the highest waterfall climb on the planet and I am climbing the Wild Thing Route thanks to Wildwire Wanaka.
For those who do not know what via ferrata is, it literally translates to ‘iron road’. It was used In WW1 to help transport troops across steep mountain ranges and was used in North Italy, a route I have been lucky enough to climb. Climbers have a harness and three sets of carabiners and are always held onto the metal cable by two of the carabiners.
Wildwire incorporates this traditional WW1 method along with metal ladders, rope bridges and stream crossings to give you a breathtaking and exciting experience. We crossed five suspension bridges, all of which we were able to hang off, hands and feet free, one of which was a three-wire bridge.
And once you get to your finishing point on the waterfall which depends on which route you take, you get an amazing lunch. We had a delicious wrap and the most tingling ginger slice I have ever eaten, from one of the best eateries in Wanaka – eaten with wonderful views from the waterfall.
So if you are in Wanaka, New Zealand’s South Island then I highly recommend you check out Wildwires’s website and take a tour with them.
Things to know about the Wild Thing Via Ferrata:
1/ At the time of undertaking the activity, the Wild Thing via ferrata route with Wildwire Wanaka costs $249 per person
2/ The complete tour including transport from Wanaka is approx 5 hours.
3/ You need to be moderately fit to complete this route.
4/ You need to be 12 years old or older to go on the Wild Thing Tour.
5/ Lunch is included
Things to know about Wildwire Wanaka:
1/ Wildwire Wanaka has three different trips on their route up the 60-metre waterfall. Go Wild which is their easiest route, Wild Thing which is their moderate route and Lord of the Rungs where you are transported back down by helicopter.
2/ All safety equipment is provided. They demonstrate and allow you time to practice the Via Ferrata technique before you climb. An experienced guide is with you at all times and will give you support according to your needs.
3/ Wildwire provide the transport to and from Twin Waterfalls or you can arrange to meet them there.
4/ Open all year round.
5/ You get snacks on all trips and on the Wild Thing and Lord of the Rungs, a delicious lunch is supplied. Makes sure you let them know if you are vegetarian or vegan or have other dietary requirements.
6/ For bookings of more than 8 people, please view their custom climbs page on their website.
Things you need on your Wildwire via ferrata trip:
1/ Good walking shoes.
2/ Wear active clothes as freedom of movement is required. Take a waterproof because New Zealand weather is unpredictable. Check the Met Office weather forecast for Treble Cone Ski Field as this is the location of the climb.
3/ A sun hat and sunscreen although on the trip I took, they provided sunscreen.
4/ A water bottle, they provide water to top this up.
5/ Bring your camera at your own risk. A small camera with a wrist strap and a handy coat pocket is ok which is what I used. I also used my phone however be aware that there have been many phones and GoPros that have ended up in the bottom of the waterfall. Wildwire can provide GoPro attachments on some helmets, you are best to contact them in advance to ensure you get one of these.
Disclaimer: Wildwire hosted us on this tour however all of my thoughts about this trip as always are my own.
Wow, this highest waterfall climb is really adventurous. Climbing over the flow of water must be scary for me but it would be an interesting and beautiful thing to do who loves adventurous stuff. It is good that Wildwire follows traditional WW1 method equipped with metal ladders, rope bridges, and stream crossings. Thanks for sharing a wonderful adventurous experience in NZ.
I have not tried this yet but surely looks very exciting and filled with adrenaline I must admit. I love the photo of the walk over the waterfall which is an absolutely stunning click and for that view alone I would do the walk. I must admit that New Zeland is on my list to visit places and when I did go I would surely want to this via ferrata route in Wanaka. Thanks for sharing a very exciting and adventurous trip.
As much as I’d like to try something like this, I’m pretty terrified of heights! Saying that, it seems like this tour has thought of everything, and the price is decent for 5 hours, and an amazing lunch too! I’ll share this with my adventure seeking friends!
We have a few “via ferrata” here in Italy, but I’ve never tried them – I guess I’m just too scared of heights eh eh. But then I can only imagine how beautiful it is to look at the gorgeous New Zealand landscape from that point of view! Great to know that they make you do a little practice before starting to climb, safety always first 🙂
I love getting a via Ferrata, we did this in Madagascar and here in the UAE too! The scenery across Wanaka looks stunning, always fancied heading to New Zealand! Going across the 5 suspension bridges sounds like so much fun, it’s good to know the options of what Wildfire offer should I make a trip to NZ!
This is definitely an adrenaline-packed adventure that I’d love to be on. This is definitely a unique way to experience a destination. I don’t think many people can say that climbed a waterfall via ferrata or were able to experience it as you have. Definitely a life-long memory you’ve made. I had no idea via ferrata was used in World War I, how interesting and makes a lot of sense strategically. I’m going to embark on a via ferrata adventure soon!
What an unique way to experience New Zealand! The trip overall looks incredible as well. I hope I can interest in completing this climb in the future since I’m definitely adding Wildwire to my New Zealand bucket list.
WW1 method seems pretty intense! I have a small fear of heights. I’m not sure if I can do this now but I hope I can find someone to encourage me to do it. Great snaps from the wildwire. It looks so exciting!
I did something similar to this in Costa Rica but not as high up suspended! I have to say that I don’t think I’ll be doing a trip like this soon but I would have in my twenties!for some reason i was able to do riskier/scarier things then. I might make an exception in NZ though. The views look gorgeous though and price seems reasonable for this experience