A new type of Via Ferrata route has opened in Belle Plagne, using an ingenious system that doesn’t require you to clip and unclip every few metres.
The Bourtes has been adapted to use the Aeroligne continuous line system, where specially adapted harness clips have a small gap which slides over the joins between lines.
Via Ferrata uses a series of steel rails, cables, iron rungs, pegs, bridges and steps implanted into rock to make a climbing route. Normally harnesses have two ropes with clips attached. Each needs to be unclipped from one line and clipped onto the next where the lines join every few metres. The new system allows you to glide seamlessly through the entire course without stopping. It also ensures you’re always fully attached to the lines.
The route is available to all to access free – either with a guide or without.
Exposure: South west
Start height: 2,315m
Arrival Altitude: 2,560m
Difficulty: AD + D
Travel time: 1:30 +
To access the start of the route go on foot to the site from Belle Plagne, at the traffic signals behind the tennis courts take the vehicle track until the Belle Plagne chairlift. Head towards the snow gun on the left and follow the footpath to the white pebbles.
The equipment can be hired from Belle Plagne Sports shop (04 79 09 20 58) in the resort centre – you get a helmet and all safety gear including the Aeroligne lines, for €19 for the day.
Here’s a great map of the whole route:
The Via Ferrata is open until the end of August.
Read more about the Via Ferrata in the Alps and our recommended routes here.