Activities & Exp...
Mt. Norquay
Tue, 22 Aug 2023

6 Reasons You Need to Try Norquay's Via Ferrata

Mt. Norquay's Via Ferrata is an adventure not to be missed in Banff National Park. Italian for "the iron way", feel the rush of adrenaline and the fresh mountain air as you take on the ultimate outdoor climbing tour. At more than 2,000 meters elevation, you'll catch jaw-dropping views of Banff from an entirely new perspective.


But the fun doesn't stop there! Once you've conquered the Via Ferrata, make sure to stop by the Cliffhouse Bistro. With one of the best mountain-gazing lunch views in Banff, you'll feel on top of the world. Refuel with some delicious food and take in the views one last time before heading down the chairlift.


Here are six reasons why you need to take on Mt. Norquay's Via Ferrata this summer:


1. You'll be safely guided by an expert


Led by a highly experienced, ACMG-certified guide. You’ll climb ladders and cross suspension bridges, harnessed to a fixed steel cable. It’s like climbing a series of ladders, all of which are located on the side of a mountain. Harnesses, helmets, and Via Ferrata leashes are provided, as well as hiking boots upon request so you'll enjoy a thrilling experience that's still safe and comfortable.


Via Ferrata Guide at top of Mt Norquay Being guided up the Via Ferrata by the friendly guides at Mt. Noquay | Photo by Nick Hase


2. You can choose the perfect route for your level


No climbing experience is needed—just a sense of adventure! The Via Ferrata is designed to accommodate everyone from singles to families (with kids over 12 years old). Welcoming beginners seeking a taste of the alpine to seasoned adventurers looking to conquer new peaks.


Time-conscious or tentative travelers will enjoy the introductory Explorer route (2.5-hour round trip, 1km distance, 2,235m elevation). Moderate mountaineers will enjoy the Ridgewalker (4-hour round trip, 1.4km distance, 2,300m elevation). Go-getters will love the Skyline (5-hour round trip, 2.5km distance, 2,15m elevation). Avid adrenaline seekers will get a rush from the Summiteer (6-hour round trip, 2,450m elevation).


Climbing up the Via Ferrata at Mt Norquay Climbing up the Via Ferrata and taking in the views at Mt. Norquay | Photo by Nick Hase


3. Getting there is easy


Just a 10-minute drive from downtown Banff, getting to Mt Norquay is a breeze. With complimentary shuttle buses departing regularly from central locations. The Via Ferrata is located on the cliffs above Mt Norquay Ski Resort, at the top of the scenic North American Chair, and chairlift tickets are included with your admission.


Starting the adventure hiking to the start of Mt Norquay Via Ferrata Hiking up on the way to the beginning of the Via Ferrata ready for the adventure | Photo by Nick Hase


4. You'll enjoy awe-inspiring views


Take in the fresh mountain air and magnificent, panoramic views of the Bow Valley and Mt Rundle, Banff’s signature peak, as you soar to 7,000 feet via the iconic North American Chairlift, and during your Via Ferrata trip. Head to the iconic Cliffhouse Bistro for high-alpine dining, craft beer, and the perfect sunny-day snapshot after your Via Ferrata adventure.


Via Ferrata Suspension Bridge Taking in the awe-inspiring views whilst crossing the Suspension Bridge | Photo by Nick Hase


5. You'll glimpse majestic wildlife


Due to Norquay's unique location and multiple eco-regions, there is an abundance of wildlife roaming the mountain. As you venture through the Via Ferrata route, make sure to keep your eyes peeled for glimpses of the beautiful wildlife. You may just spot a Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep or marmots darting through the rocks.


Two rocky mountain sheep on Mt. Norquay Two Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep perched on Mt. Norquay | Photo by Nick Hase


6. You can indulge Norquay's mountaintop treats


After your Via Ferrata adventures, pop into the historic Cliffhouse Bistro. A restored retro teahouse its the perfect place for a mountain drink and bite to eat. Their summer menu serves up everything from tea-infused cocktails to paninis to shared platters, all while you enjoy one of the best seats in Banff National Park. The views of the townsite below are unparalleled.


Food at the Cliffhouse Bistro Tucking into some delicious food at the Cliffhouse Bistro after taking on Mt. Norquay's Via Ferrata | Photo by Nick Hase


Here's a sneak peek at Mt. Norquay's Via Ferrata:


Ready for another adventure?


While summer in Banff National Park is a must-do—so is winter! With three unique ski resorts to explore, it won’t be long before you feel the call of the Canadian Rockies’ famous powder snow.


To help you find the best summer or ski vacation packages for your taste, style, and budget, our friendly Reservations Team is always happy to share their local knowledge and experience. Check out our featured vacation packages or call us on 1-844-754-2443: our based-in-Banff experts are here to help!