Today we’ll be talking about one of the most photographed trails in Colorado. Giving you the complete Telluride Via Ferrata guide. Making sure you have all the tips you need to have a successful adventure out in the mountains. The route itself is free to anyone and open to the public 24 hours a day. Making for an incredible adventure for those looking to step outside of their comfort zone. Just as long as you have the right safety equipment. Below we’ll go over everything you need to know before you go.
A brief History of the Telluride Via Ferrata
Located in Telluride Colorado, the Via Ferrata or Kroger Via Ferrata was originally built by a local climber as a secret for him and his friends to enjoy. But like most secrets they have a way of getting out. Once it did, the route began to gain popularity amongst locals in the San Juan Mountains. Then the Telluride Via Ferrata was featured on the cover of a popular outdoor magazine featuring a young climber. And the boom began. Currently, an estimated 20,000+ people do the Telluride Via Ferrata each year.
Telluride Via Ferrata Video
- Via Ferrata Screamer Harness
- Proper hiking clothing
- Good shoes
- Gorilla Grip Gloves
- Small Backpack
- Water Bottle
Telluride Via Ferrata Guide & Tips – Colorado Hiking
- The route is one way, going east. Meaning you will start on the right side and end on the left side of the route.
- There are very exposed sections of the route that do not have cables (see video).
- The Telluride via ferrata is free and open to the public. You do need to have the right equipment including a harness and via ferrata screamer for safety.
- If you do not have equipment you can sign up for a tour. Typically costing around $150 per person (+tip). Note: You can buy the gear for less and use it in nearby Ouray Colorado which has two free via ferratas open to the public.
- For shoes, I recommend a good trail runner with a low stack height (less cushion). Something agile with good traction.
- Most people park in the general parking area at the bottom of the canyon. But you can drive up the Bridal Veil Falls road to the start.
- Parking at the main parking area will save you time once you are done. As the trail leads you straight down to it.
- There are two ways to hike to the start of the course from the main parking area. One is by taking the Bridal Veil Falls trail which is shorter and steeper. Or you can take the road which is longer but a lighter grade.
- Expect to spend 2-3 hours on the actual course. And another 1 hour or so hiking to the start and from the finish.
- On the route, there is a bench (Kroger’s Bench) right before you start the main sections of the course. This is a great place to grab some photos, food, and water before going through the hardest sections.
- Click here to check out the complete list of Via Ferratas in North America.
If this trail isn’t on your bucket list, then it should be! I’ve had a chance to do it twice now. And have every intention of going back and doing it again at some point. Hopefully if I can ever get into the HardRock 100 which takes place in the same area. Which would make the perfect excuse. If you find yourself anywhere in or near the San Juan Mountains then you should be adding this to your list. And while you are there make sure to do the two free via ferrata routes over in Ouray Colorado about 45 minutes away. Making for a great long weekend on fun in the mountains!