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12

You never want to stop yourself with the crampons because they are liable to catch, flip you over, and at best, put you in a worse situation than before, and at worst, break your legs. Instead you want to first stop yourself using the pick of the ice axe, with your crampons raised above the ice. You can use your knees as an additional brake. The way you do ...


11

I was once shown a great way to protect the blade on a wood axe or hatchet. I realize that ice axes are a different shape than wood axes, so this may not be a perfect solution, but maybe it will give you an inspiration for something similar. Get an old garden hose. Cut a length of the hose about as long as the axe's blade. Cut an incision down the length ...


8

For winter walking a traditional straight-shafted mountaineering axe seems most appropriate. This would include products like the very common BD Raven or Raven Pro, and also those with a slight bend such as the Petzl Summit, Grivel Air Tech Evo, and BD Venom. As there are existing questions regarding length (How do I know what size ice axe I should get?), ...


6

For the spike, I usually just take a piece of corrugated cardboard, fold it to double the thickness, punch holes through it, and use some thin cord to tie it through the hole in the spike. This is low-tech and works if I lose my protector while traveling, which is what always happens. No matter where I am, it's always pretty easy to get some cardboard. For ...


6

Although @ReverendGonzo gave a nice answer I want to start a little debate. There is no explicit answer to this question. Different alpine clubs have different opinions and even different mountain guides in one organization. That being said, I think the process described by @ReverendGonzo (which I will call default process) is very common and also the ...


5

Searching an ice axe for what I would call classical alpine terrain isn't that tough in my opinion. There might be fancy new features and very durable items (T-classification) but those might not be necessary for an ice axe typically used as a walking support. Most important for me is the correct length of the shaft so that you can actually reach the ground ...


4

I can think of the following two ways to cover the blade: You can use something like a Bike Handle cover, the one that has a cap on the other end. You can get it of the size that your fits in. I assume that the main blade will be a bit hard to fit in, but then you can always give a try towards getting the handle cover which is a bit flexible(probably made ...


4

These letters stand for Basic and Technical The real differences are: B's are lighter, relatively cheap and not recommended for technical climbing. They are considered general mountaineering axes. T axes are heavier and much stronger. They will cope with technical climbs and be much more durable. Aside from that, they look similar and the same styles ...


3

What came to my mind when I read WedaPashi's answer about bicycle handles was the use of old bicycle tubes to build some sheath. The rubber of the tube is flexible but it's not too easy to perforate it, therefore you can build your sheath rather close-fitting. Also you can glue it easily with bicycle patch glue.


2

I use pneumatic hosing, something like this: http://www.mcmaster.com/#standard-plastic-and-rubber-tubing/=uowues It's super cheap (runs under a dollar/foot and a foot is more than you will need) and you can buy as short of a section you want at most hardware stores.


1

A very important difference is that you should only belay from a 'T' rated axe.



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