Winter sports fanatics can quickly become weary of the normal activities on offer. For those who yearn for a truly exciting and close call with nature, leave the skis in the chalet this winter. Walking on ice and the thrill of each crunch beneath your feet on the glacier should be your next winter adventure. Glued to the screen on the edge of your seat, you’ve watched the documentaries of those who ice hike, so now it’s time for you to live the thrill for yourself: try out glacier hiking for an invigoratingly unique experience which has the added benefit of taking place amid some of Mother Nature’s most beautiful natural sites. |
Franz Josef Glacier, New Zealand
This world-famous glacier is accessible only by helicopter, so all the ducks are lined up for a visit here to be one of the most amazing trips to tick off your travel bucket list. Thisglacier is constantly moving, so river surges and flooding as well as ice falls and rock slides are not uncommon. Be sure to check accessibility before you make your way there. But once you are out there on the ice surrounded by a network of crevasses, blue ice and ice caves, you’ll be overwhelmed by the sheer sense of your own tininess in the face of such a huge and powerful glacier.
Chadar Trek, Ladakh, India
This Indian adventure of a lifetime is the challenge for those who like their treks difficult. The 100-kilometre-long9-12 day trek has a ‘difficult’ rating and is not for the faint-hearted. You’ll walk on top of the frozen Zanskar River, and may even be able to see the fast-flowing ice-cold water gushing along beneath the frozen pane of glass-like ice on which you’ll be standing. This really is an unremitting adventure:you’ll be camping in caves along the way and carrying all of your own equipment. It really is a baptism of fire (or ice!).
Maligne Canyon Icewalk, Canada
If you’d rather have more of an introductory taste of ice walking than plunging head first into the Chadar Trek, then this two-hour icewalk is just what the doctor ordered. High-quality equipment including the necessary boots and ice cleats are offered onsite, so you are free to explore the frozen waterfalls, towering ice pillars and underground caves of the Maligne Canyon Icewalk in perfect safety.
Grey Glacier, Chile
Chilean Patagonia was bound to make it onto this list, and the Grey Glacier is often deemed to be the eighth wonder of the world. Both the glacier itself and its surroundings are breathtakingly beautiful. There are a number of hiking routes of varying levels of difficulty leading to the glacier, with some very challenging treks on offer for the most intrepid explorers out there! Strong winds, freezing temperatures and trying terrain are going to try to beat you before you even make it to the ice walking, but persevere. The mesmerizingly beautiful vistas at the end are more than worth it.
Insurance Against Wear and Tear…
If you have your sights set on ice hiking in these destinations or in any other then you’ll need winter travel insurance. While the most common policies can be pricey and restrictive, there are specialist winter travel insurance providers like Let’s Go Insure who offer reasonably priced cover for trekking on ice and related activities. With the right level of insurance, even the most notorious powder hounds and thrill-seeking trekkers can live out their own winter wonderland scenarios with total peace of mind.
Ethan Bailey is an experienced adventure traveller and insurance expert with the team at Let's Go Insure. Ethan’s passion is to inspire his clients to go just that little bit further, deeper and higher on their travels and his expertise in providing the ideal insurance cover allows them to do just that. If you're looking for the best winter sports insurance Let's Go works with the most experienced underwriters, intermediaries and insurers to offer a range of competitive insurance without compromising on cover.
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