Beyond Via Ferrata: Helihiking British Columbia

Beyond Via Ferrata: Helihiking British Columbia

Robert Earle Howells

Every CMH helihiking experience commences with a drop-off in an otherwise inaccessible spot in British Columbia's Purcell Range.

One of the crux sections of the via ferrata involves this swinging footbridge. It hangs several hundred feet above the chasm at the foot of the spires summit.

Bruce Howatt/CMH

The final push up Mount Nimbus entails serious exposure on a corner of the mountain's crowning spire.

Robert Earle Howells

The via ferrata culminates with a 150-foot, free-hanging rappel off the backside of Mount Nimbus.

Robert Earle Howells

The Conrad Glacier Experience includes several crossings of the glaciers roaring outflow, Conrad Creek. Some are by zipline.

Bruce Howatt/CMH

...while others entail a Wallenda-esque crossing via Burma bridge, a single cable span. Hikers can grab cable handrails and are securely tethered to an overhead cable.

Robert Earle Howells

Thanks to perfect placement of iron rungs, the ascent of walls is like climbing a 200-foot ladder.

The hike/climb to the mouth of Conrad Glacier includes interludes of relative tranquility, such as this hike along a knife-edge ridge.

Robert Earle Howells

The ascent of a big wall at the mouth of the Conrad Glacier.

Robert Earle Howells

This sheer pitch will culminate on a plateau high above Conrad Glacier.

Robert Earle Howells

The final push up the wall that flanks the mouth of Conrad Glacier.

After multiple river crossings, a series of rung-assisted big-wall pitches and several ledge traverses, we reached a plateau above Conrad Glacier where we waited for a helicopter to ferry us back to the lodge.

Beyond Via Ferrata: Helihiking British Columbia