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19

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 ...


15

Collapse them down, sandwich them with the points facing each inwards, and wrap the straps around them. You can then use a "real" crampon bag to hold them, or improvise. Some ideas for packaging them include: Cut the top off a 2 liter soda bottle (use two bottles for full containment). Make or buy a heavy (e.g. 500D) cordura nylon bag. Cut off an old ...


14

There's one good way to make sure that your crampons last forever and are completely safe against failure in the field, which is to leave them in a closet and never use them. Assuming that you are going to use them, you can try to avoid walking on bare rocks in them. Walking on rocks will dull the points and will also stress the metal by repeatedly bending ...


12

I usually dislodge snow by kicking something: a rock, tree, some ice, or by stomping on a patch of hard ground. Kicking toe first into the snow can dislodge it as well, but often it depends on the type of snow. Using your tool to smack your crampons may work, but it can do damage to both your tool and your crampons, so it's not the best thing to do. Anti-...


11

Think of a shovel, you use the sharp edge to cut into the snow, and the flat blade to pack it down. When you're climbing soft ice, you don't want to cut through it, you want it to support your foot so you can you stand on it. The horizontal front points are used for hiking glacial ice, snow and non-technical ice climbing. Vertical points are great for ...


11

Absolutely yes. I don't leave my home without them (well, another model than the one you linked) if there is any chance of hitting snow/ice during a hike. For such hikes, they always, at any time of the year, sit at the bottom of my pack, right next to the survival sheet. I've had at least two occasions where they transformed a stupendously dangerous ...


10

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 ...


10

According to Will Gadd, you should sharpen your crampons and ice tools after every use. If you spend just a minute or two after each trip–sometimes you won't even need a minute, just give them a look over and a couple passes with the file to take off a couple burrs–then you're never going to have to worry about dull points. Regular maintenance also ensures ...


10

I usually sharp my crampons when I am expecting icy conditions, that means glare ice. Especially when you go steep and need front point technique, you need to rely on those points - all your bodys weight. If your front spikes are too coarse, you need much more energy to bring them secure and stable into the ice. Besides that, the ice will splinter and break ...


10

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?), ...


9

Yes, there is an EN standard that regulates how crampons should behave to get the EN certification. Unfortunately the guide is not available for free, as far as I know. The UIAA reccomendations mostly rely on top of the EU ones. The only added requirement by UIAA is: In the information to be supplied the manufacturer shall draw attention to the dangers ...


8

Boots and Crampons have ratings that give you an idea of compatibility. Boots are rated B0 (three season boots, or basically, bedroom slippers!) to B3 (rigid shell mountaineering boots), and crampons are rated C0 (flexible, strap-on) to C2 (rigid, typically step-in). In theory, you shouldn't use a crampon with a higher number than your boot. But, more ...


7

Compatibility I am not familiar with the rating system (B0-3, C0-2) mentioned in other answer, but the compatibility of boots and crampons boils down to two questions: Do the boots have a welt/lip in the front and/or back? This defines the choice of attachment system that is suitable. Most hiking boots do not have any welts, so you need a crampon with ...


7

I am not exactly the guy who have been doing that year by year, but I have some thoughts about cleaning and packing the gear after a high altitude expedition. I think some of it can be applied to your scenario. I would first soap-wash (if recommended) the gear so that there is no dirt. Dirt, deposited and remained there over the longer period time can cause ...


7

I have a pair of Charlet Moser walking crampons, and just for fun, I fit them onto my 3 year old's size 25 winter boots (US/CAN size 9C): I had to cheat of course, I removed the bar that attaches the toe and heel peices, then overlapped them. But looking at the crampons, I think they fit a size 32 natively (US/CAN size 1). There isn't really a market for ...


7

Depends on how steep your ice patch is. Crampons are really good when you have steep slopes and you need to do some real front pointing. Crampons are good for mixed climbing as well. They are also heavier than microspikes. Microspikes make a good choice when the slopes are less steep. And when your needs for grip are not that severe. From my experience, ...


6

The answer to this question at its most basic level is generally use your ski crampons until you would feel more safe using boot crampons. I suspect since you asked this question you aren't very experienced with ski crampons and/or boot crampons so I'm going to talk a little bit about their use cases. Ski crampons are only used when ascending, and used in ...


6

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 ...


6

It depends, if the snow is pretty level and you don't need the front points on the crampons to get up things, then yes microspikes can be a good substitute as they are certainly lighter and don't require specialized boots. They will never be a full substitute for crampons, but they should fit your purposes better than crampons would. For bigger glaciers I ...


5

What I believe was left out, is the occasional recoating of exposed steel surfaces with a Teflon coating such as Tuf Cloth or other suitable rust inhibitor. This will aid in protection when the original steel surface is exposed over time. Stainless steels (I will assume your material is a Cr/Mo alloy here) do eventually rust especially with rough use, wet ...


5

In addition to everything suggested by @Ben Crowell, you will also prolong the life of the crampons if you become very skilled at moving in them. That is, every step or climbing move should be graceful and precise, so that you are not bashing any of the points on anything, ever. Not only will this be good for your crampons, but it will also be good for ...


5

Whoever told you C1 are aimed at 'more advanced users' than C2 is plain wrong. Crampon grades are really about where and how you plan to use them, rather than how good you are. Here's a typically thorough and useful article by Andy Kirkpatrick. Also, the BMC have some good articles, for instance this. C1:B1 Strap fixing, with toe 'cage'. Will typically ...


5

It's good for a question on SE to be focused. However, there is a broader context here, which is that you want your activities to be (a) safe and (b) comfortable and enjoyable, so that you'll want to continue doing winter mountaineering rather than letting your crampons gather dust in a closet. In this context, the exact choice of crampons is a relatively ...


5

This is an excellent article comparing the two. Use the ski when you need the grip but still want the flotation of the ski. You are limited to how steep you can go with a ski. This is a picture of people using the ski crampon. proskiservice The boot is better when it is too steep for ski, or the snow is so hard you need more bite. You need to make ...


4

Snow shoes. Not just any snow shoes, but those with metal edges and crampon-like teeth below the foot. They increase your traction on slush a lot and if you encounter ice on the top or get deep enough for ice contact, the metal will provide you with traction. This traction on ice is obviously very limited by the non-ideal force transfer from your feet to the ...


4

Go jogging. Not on asphalt or paved roads, go "off-piste". Woodland trails are great. If you are able to, choose low shoes with low to moderate damping. Then run. Jogging over uneven ground is what I do to keep my feet strong. After years of playing handball I had trouble with my ankles, but running with low profile shoes in the forest (and trekking in the ...


4

Get a balance board. When you brush your teeth, stand on it with bare feet and balance. Once you become stronger, balance standing on one foot. I did this during marathon training with good results. Balance board example To increase calf strength, try step-ups: Position the tip of your foot on a stair Flex your foot, raising your body by a few inches just ...


4

The warning sign of balling up is that your boots will be noticeably heavier due to the snow sticking to them. Once that happens your options include Lift up one boot at a time and knock the side of the boot with your ice axe or trekking pole. Knock your boots together every so often to dislodge the snow being careful not to get the crampons tangled


4

Some crampons have a heel lever that clamps down on the sole at the heel of the boot. These are more stable, but they don't always fit things like rubber boots. Steel crampons will stay sharp, but weigh more than aluminum crampons. If you buy them online, make sure you can return them if they won't work with your boots. Probably it will be no problem with ...


4

The single point setup was developed to aid in very high technical levels of mixed climbing. Dual points can make it hard to keep the crampon on small rock holds. Also in certain kinds of ice, the monopoint can get a better grip. The various other setups are attempts to make a compromise between getting full grip in the ice and staying stable on rock. My ...


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