Great Adventure - Sacred Valley, Peru
by, 10-22-2010 at 10:59 AM (3538 Views)
While doing on-line research for our recent trip to Peru, we started reading about the adventure opportunities with Natura Vive:
After visiting their web site, the challenges seemed too intriguing to ignore. Having previously spent time in the Sacred Valley, we really wanted to attempt to climb their via ferrata and descend on their recently completed zip lines.
Over a period of several weeks, we exchanged emails with Natalia Rodriguez at Natura Vive and were satisfied we could probably successfully make the climb.
As others have written in their on-line reviews, the total experience is hard to put into words. But for certain, it is not to be missed regardless of your age.
Analytically evaluating the experience, you climb approximately 396 meters or 1,300ft or ¼ mile or 0.4 km, if you do the entire via ferrata and if you decided to do the zip lines, you can add in 2,000 very, very fast meters for your decent.
Turns out our guide for the day would be Ario Ferri, who along with his wife, Natalia (who sent us the emails), also an accomplished climber, are the co-designers and motivating forces behind the construction and operation of Peru’s first via ferrata. It was reassuring to know both Ario and Natalia were both accomplished climbers with years of experience in the mountains of South America.
Ario was responsible for planning the accent route and spent more than three months drilling into the rock face and cementing in place more than 500 metal rebar steps in addition to constructing a dual cable bridge (10 or 12 meters in length) and securely anchoring all of the safety cables for use along the way.
On the day of our adventure, Ario proved to be a boundless supply of energy, enthusiasm and confidence….leaving little or no time to focus on anything other than successfully completing the climb. “You just have to climb one more step,” shouted Ario, “then listen for the double click of those locking carabiners before moving.” Ario continued this relentless mantra throughout the climb, which eventually allowed us to establish a pattern we would follow for the next four hours.
During our lunch break on a well situated ledge about 800 meters above the valley, Ario proclaimed, “You will always remember this day and it will have a special meaning.”
At the time he uttered the sentence, his comment had little meaning since we were totally focused on clinging to the cliff face, eating our well deserved meals and soaking up the incredible views.
Later in the day, as he secured us to the zip lines for the high speed ride, he reminded us to focus our attention on the views of the Urubamba Valley. "Not many people get to see this view," said Ario, "but today it is your special gift to hold forever."
Now that we have had time to reflect on the experience, Ario was 100% correct….we will probably remember this day for a long time. The excitement, the shared accomplishments and the knowledge we have done something way beyond our wildest expectations.
Don’t let this adventure pass you by!