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The cold world of skimo & alpine climbing

The cold world of skimo & alpine climbing

Friday, May 21, 2010

3 lbs?

3 lb 4 oz per foot, Scarpa boot and Black Diamond crampon combo, in a size 45.

Not a dbl boot but more than a single boot.
Not a full steel crampon but at least the front half is.
Not 3 lbs but we are getting closer.

3lb 9 oz is the steel crampon, true double boot, gold standard in a size 45. Sadly that is a 1980's Kolfach Ultra, Evolite liner, strap-on steel, hinged Chouinards.

Spantik, Baruntse liner, Stripped Sabertooth with a aluminum Neve heel, Petzl front bail, size 45. 3lb 10oz. Make it an all steel Sabertooth with your custom Spantik and you have a 4# combo per foot. A 6# combo with a stock set of Cyborgs.
6lb 4oz with factory Spantiks and Cyborgs.

Only a 1/2 lb per foot to go.
Why does this have to so hard?
Is anyone paying attention?


John said...

I gotta say: less weight on the foot means a harder kick required to get it to stick. And unless it is pure ice climbing (i.e. no 60 degree snow/neve slopes like one so commonly finds in Alaska) I am going to want a full steel crampon. So yeah... is less weight to carry (the hybrid crampon) worth the additional effort with each kick?

Poncho said...

Hey John,
No, I don't think a hybrid crampon is something I'll use often. But I have no doubt dropping weight on the crampon/boot combo is worth the effort, everything else being equal.

I don't think it is a weight issue on bullet proof alpine ice but a boot/crampon interface (which needs to be rock solid), rigid boot soles with good ankle support with a excellent fit and just as importantly the crampon's design. It needs to be a sytem where each item compliments the other and all are choosen for the project in mind by priorities.

There are a lot of crampon designs to choose from these days so it is easy to pick and choose a combo that best fits your needs.

Obviously you'll have less effort to stick a set of Black Diamond Cyborg forged front points on a Baruntse as opposed to something like a Petzl Sharken on a Nepal Trango Extreme on "bullet" ice for example.

The coolest thing about alpine climbing is just how complicated it is. You want to dial in fitness, nutrition, recovery, gear, weather and objective dangers along with what is going on with your partner among a few things. It is easy to ignore or over think any of it :)