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Mount Norquay is an iconic mountain in the Banff National Park. It has everything from wedding venues and events to outdoor activities like hiking and skiing. The Mount Norquay Via Ferrata is one of the many activities that can be experienced on the mountain. It’s the perfect summer outdoor activity for a group of adventurous friends. We ended up doing this hike for Mattson’s birthday and were able to get 8 friends all together in one group. We chose to challenge the Summiteer route which was a 6-hour tour.

 

 

ADVENTURE STATISTICS

Time Required: 6 Hours

Location: Just north of Banff

Distance: 3.2km round trip

Highest Elevation: 2450m

Elevation Gain: 360m

Difficulty: 5/10 – Heights and exposure

Season: June to mid-October

Additional Requirements: A tour reservation

 

DRIVING DIRECTIONS

From Calgary: Take the Trans-Canada (Hwy 1) west to Banff, take the second Banff exit onto Mt Norquay Road and turn right (away from Banff) and follow Mt Norquay Road until you reach the resort.

 

WHAT TO BRING

 

  • Comfortable Footwear: Hiking shoes with good grip and lots of support.  If you don’t have a good pair they can supply hiking boots. Make sure your shoes are broken in prior to tackling this hike to prevent unexpected blisters.
  • Water: This hike has lots of elevation gain to reach the summit.  Be sure to bring enough water.
  • Snacks: A bag lunch is provided with the 6-hour tour but if you have specific diet needs or wants bring your own snacks!
  • Weather appropriate clothing: You will be exposed to the elements throughout this hike.  Check the weather forecast and plan accordingly.
  • Sunscreen: If it is sunny and you’re like Mattson, who easily burns, bring sunscreen!
  • Insect Repellent: Insect repellent can greatly improve your hiking experience.
  • Camera: There are numerous photo opportunities you won’t want to miss.

 

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

Leave No Trace: It is important that we enjoy the outdoors responsibly and sustainably. Some key principles to consider when hiking to “Leave No Trace” are:

  • Plan ahead and prepare: Proper planning allows adventurers to hike safely while minimizing damage to the land.
  • Travel on durable surfaces: Stick to the trail when possible. If there is no trail, or you must travel off trail, stay on durable surfaces to reduce your impact.
  • Dispose of waste properly: Pack it in, pack it out.
  • Leave what you find: Leave rocks, plants, archaeological artifacts and other objects of interest as you find them.
  • Respect wildlife: Observe wildlife from a distance. Never feed wild animals.
  • Be considerate of other visitors: Be courteous to others to allow everyone to enjoy their outdoor experience.

To learn more about “Leave No Trace” visit http://www.leavenotrace.ca

 

HIKING DIRECTIONS

Summary: Every tour is guided so you don’t have to worry about taking the right route or getting lost. The guides a Mt Norquay are fantastic and made sure we were 100% prepared to take on the mountain.

Via Ferrata is Italian for “Iron path” which is the perfect way to describe this adventure. A Via Ferrata is a climbing route up a mountain that has been made easier, and safe, with the use of carabiners, harnesses, cables and iron hand/foot holds that have been mounted into the mountain itself.

Mt Norquay Via Ferrata - Banff - Epic Trip Adventures
Image 1: Anderson crossing a 3 cable bridge
Mt Norquay Via Ferrata - Banff - Epic Trip Adventures
Image 2: Mattson crossing a 2 cable bridge

 

Mt Norquay has 4 options for routes:

  • Explorer – 2-2.5 hour hike
  • Ridgewalker – 3.5-4 hour hike
  • Skyline – 4.5-5 hour hike
  • Summiteer – 5-6 hour hike

Each hike has its own highlights and attractions from ladders to suspension bridges. This adventure requires a reservation so be sure to call or book online.

https://banffnorquay.com/summer/via-ferrata/routes/

 

Mt Norquay Via Ferrata - Banff - Epic Trip Adventures
Image 3: Hanging out on the Via Ferrata
Mt Norquay Via Ferrata - Banff - Epic Trip Adventures
Image 4: The suspension bridge

 

 

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU

Thank you for choosing Epic Trip Adventures as your guide. We are committed to continually updating our guides to be as relevant and accurate as possible. If you have feedback to improve this guide please leave it in the comments below.

We also want to hear about your Via Ferrata adventures. If you have stories, pictures or even a link to your own adventure video please share them below!

 

Have fun out there!

– ETA