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  • Madeline Casey

Via Ferrata opens in Derbyshire at Mount Cook Adventure Centre

New Via Ferrata activity opens utilising a historic quarry at Mount Cook in Wirksworth


Mount Cook have officially opened their newest activity, bringing adventure and a sense of history to visitors, guests and Derbyshire residents.


Mount Cook Adventure Centre, a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to providing access to the outdoors for all, has opened its newest Dolomites inspired activity; a fantastic Via Ferrata. This brand-new activity includes a two tier 80-metre journey along a disused quarry face with a variety of natural and metal hand holds, providing a fun and challenging experience for Mount Cook’s guests. Alongside this, Mount Cook have installed a new onsite rock-climbing area and 12 metre abseil.


Three children in blue helmets climbing on a rock face
1st Chatsworth Scouts were one of the first groups to use the Via Ferrata

This exciting development at Mount Cook comes 2 years after they were able to reopen to the public after lockdown. Since then, Mount Cook have hosted over 16,000 guests from a wide range of schools, apprentice programmes and Derbyshire based charities such as Action for Children, Umbrella – Embracing Abilities, and Sight Support Derbyshire providing direct access to the outdoors in a safe environment.


The Via Ferrata itself, along with a variety of other outdoor activities including the rooftop zipwire, bushcraft, archery and high ropes will be available to Mount Cook’s guests as part of educational programmes designed to promote life skills such as communication, confidence, and resilience. These crucial skills have widely declined in young people and children since lockdown restrictions.


"Education in its widest sense is not just about academic curriculum; it’s about developing the whole person. Adventurous activities, when run well, provide challenge and opportunities to assess risk. We provide these opportunities within a framework of safety and allow young people to develop a sense of responsibility, perseverance, tenacity, and commitment. We encourage them to explore, question, and to be curious." ~ Mount Cook CEO, Steve Turner

Utilising the limestone rock face that was carved out by Steeplehouse Quarry from 1899 to around 1945, the Via Ferrata will be a hands-on geographical experience for visitors to the area. The hand and footholders used in the traverse include reclaimed ladders and metal work from the local area, adding to the educational value of the activity.


Mount Cook Adventure Centre’s environmentally friendly centre opened in 2016, with enough fully catered accommodation for up to 180 guests. Since then, they have provided outdoor experiences to over 50,000 young people and created jobs in the local area.

A young person in a white helmet on a rock face
The Via Ferrata provides and exciting new challenge for children and adults alike

There will be several weekends over the coming year when the Via Ferrata and other onsite activities will be open to non-residential guests to come for taster days. Visit www.mountcook.uk/whats-on to find out more.


Mount Cook Adventure centre logo

If you would like to enquire about bringing a group to Mount Cook, please call 01629 823 702 or email explore@mountcook.uk to speak to one of our friendly team.

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