The last thing you want to do when you’re out on some risky adventure is fall from a great height. You go on an adventure because you want the temptation of danger, to nearly taste it, but to always surmount it. Not everybody can climb Mt. Everest, nor should they. For those who aren’t professional climbers, but still want the thrill and beauty of reaching a great height in a vast land, there is an adventure for you in Jasper, Canada. In Jasper, there is a cliff edge, and of all the cliff edges around the world, none offer a view like this.
It’s called the Glacier Skywalk. It is an arch pathway erected horizontally out from the cliff edge, where it reaches over 100 feet into the free air. The arch is made of steel and glass. The glass part is at the furthest point out in the arch. When you travel along the pathway, you are stepping on glass. Below you is a drop that, at 918 feet, you don’t want to be taking, but you do want to look at it. Look all around you. A free and beautiful open world fills every corner from where you look. You will be juggling awe from the wonderment of nature at her best and fear and adrenaline from the strange sensation that you’re practically standing on air.
The Glacier Skywalk opened on May 1, the event marking a page in the book of engineering history. It is quite the engineering achievement and even won a World Architecture Festival Award while still under construction.
There have been arguments against the arch. Some say that it is commercializing the parks. Parks should be about getting as close to nature as possible, and the argument is that the Glacier Skywalk is going for a cheap thrill, that it is bordering the same thing as building a rollercoaster in the park. One thing is for sure, it offers something you can’t get anywhere else. It is an adventure into the unknown, your own fear. Jasper National Park offers a truly breathtaking landscape, and the Glacier Skywalk allows you to experience it from an angle that was once impossible.