Ferrata Difficulty Ratings
I suppose it is obvious that the difficulty of Ferrate vary. What is not so obvious is how to describe how difficult a particular ferrata is. The reason for this is that the standard climbing difficulty ratings do not quite apply to a via ferrata. Climbing on a via ferrata is not quite like a free-climbing rock climb; nor is it quite like an aid climb, nor is it like an ice climb. There is enough difference in the situation with which one is presented on a via ferrata to warrant a new difficulty rating. This page describes this.
There are two different via ferrata difficulty rating systems with which I am familiar, and I will use these two ratings systems on these pages. The first is from the excellent and complete ferrata guidebooks by Graham Fletcher and John Smith (These are the current guidebooks that I use when exploring via ferrata). The second rating system is from an older guidebook from Hofler/Werner. Whenever you see ratings listed for a ferrata on my web page, I'll always indicate the Fletcher/Smith rating first, and the Hofler/Werner rating second (e.g. 3B / D).
So, without further hesitation, here are the two ratings systems:
The Fletcher / Smith Rating System
The Hofler / Werner Rating System