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A athlete makes their way down mid-mountain at the Arapahoe Basin Ski Area on May 20, 2015. (Andy Cross, The Denver Post)

With its 2018-19 winter season just years away, Arapahoe Basin Ski Area’s plans to reimagine its summer on-mountain recreational offerings recently took a giant jump into the future.

The White stream National Forest proclaimed on Tuesday that its Dillon Ranger District is now acceptive comments on A-Basin’s plans for about 10 miles of new trails for hike and mountain biking and two “via ferrata” zones — one below tree line at lower mountain tract and one above tree line on upper mountain tract.

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A via ferrata — which is Italian for “iron path” — traditionally is a protected climb route most often involving a steel cable that runs on the route and is sporadically fixed to the bedrock, in this case A-Basin’s East Wall and a rock face inside the ski area’s “Steep Gullies” tract. The proposal doesn’t mention if those areas would be affected in the winter season. Climbers then atypically scale the via ferrata by securing themselves to the cable, which limits the possibility of falling. extra climb AIDS are often provided as well, with a via ferrata kit.

Via ferratas are traditionally found in the Alps, though compound has the most well-known example in Colorado. As for via ferratas at ski areas like A-Basin, there is presently one at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort.

Read more about the via ferratas and trails at Summit Daily.