taking visitors off the beaten path
There are entrepreneurs, and then there is Mark Meyer and his wife Kathy of Torrent Falls Resort. From the very beginning, when Mark dropped into the MACED office with business plan in tow seeking financing to promote their climbing business and restaurant, it was obvious that he had a passion for the work. We also knew that the business was a project that fit nicely with MACED’s ecotourism and natural assets lending interests for its unique blend of innovative outdoor education and climbing adventure.
Located in Wolfe County, in the heart of the Red River Gorge Geological Area of the Daniel Boone National Forest, Torrent Falls Resort features a unique climbing adventure sport. Although popular in Europe, Torrent Falls’ via ferrata is the first climbing venue of its type in the United States. Climbing a via ferrata doesn’t require any skills or prior experience, just a spirit of adventure for being outdoors and enjoying nature. The climbing system is host to scores of guests including boy scout troops, corporate staff groups and outdoor education programs that travel from as far away as Cincinnati and Louisville. Guests as young as ten and as old as 80 have enjoyed the adventure.
Mark said, “Torrent Falls Resort is a very unique place. It’s the only facility of its kind in the United States and the only complete climb shop in the state. Although this area draws tourists, we provide a complete destination all in one location. The whole family can make a fun-filled day or an entire weekend out of visiting our resort.”
MACED loan funds allowed Torrent Falls Resort to purchase inventory for the climbing gear shop and to design and develop outdoor billboards and road signage. The marketing campaign was necessary to prepare the business for the Memorial Day holiday, an important season full of visitors to the Red River Gorge.
Torrent Falls Resort possessed the gifts of nature but needed a loan to help spread the word about all the frills and thrills the business has to offer. Not only does Torrent Falls feature the rare climbing system, but it also has Mark’s Mountain Barbeque (one of the few eateries on the scenic byway), a year-round historic bed and breakfast, private cabins, live entertainment, Kentucky’s highest waterfall and guided traditional climbing and rappelling. With the help of MACED loan funds, Mark and Kathy are successfully working to thoughtfully expose visitors from all over the region to the beauty of eastern Kentucky’s natural treasures.
For more information, visit www.torrentfalls.com or call 606-668-6613.