Quick Tips for Climbing an Ice Trail in the Winter

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Do you want to climb an ice wall in Switzerland or hike an ice waterfall trail in the USA?  Climbing a “Swiss Scramble” sounded exciting after reading this Wall Street Journal article, but it was a bit far away for our next family hiking adventure.  We opted instead for hiking on the ice trail at Ricketts Glen State Park in Pennsylvania.  Ricketts Glen Waterfall Trail is a hidden jewel, in every season.  Wintertime is for the adventurous, you need ice crampons to hike along the 21 waterfalls path The path is uphill and downhill on steep rocks and in the winter-sheets of ice.  Be prepared with the proper equipment that the park recommends; ice crampons, an ice pick, and rope.  Since this winter has had fluctuating temperatures, the waterfalls were not frozen sheets of ice.  Nevertheless, it was incredible to see the ice on the waterfalls glow in a light blue hue.

 

We felt very secure walking on the ice with our Stabilicers and dug them in to the ice at the spots that were the most slippery.  One false move and you will go over the side of the rocks.  We came across teenagers hiking in Converse sneakers, and one of them had blood dripping on her leg from falling on the ice.  They were hanging on to each other as they tried to go down the trail.  If you go hiking at Ricketts Glen in the winter, be smart and wear the proper equipment.  We also saw hikers with so much equipment that we thought they were going to scale an ice mountain, but they were just hiking the same trail.

 

Add this to your bucket list, it is a “must see” place in the USA!

Ice Pebbles on the trail.

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