Gear Review: Grivel G10 Crampon

Photo: Dirtbag Dreams blog post
Zack McGill, a guide for Outward Bound, recently had a chance to review the Grivel G10 crampon while guiding teams over some Alaskan glaciers. The G10 is one of Grivel's classic crampons that is designed for all around mountaineering. The crampons are fully adjustable, making them great for use by guide services, and feature Grivel's patented active anti-balling system to shed snow and ice from the bottom of the foot.

In his review, Zack says "they performed well on everything from dry glacier, frozen sun-cupped snow, and the mashed potatoes of the afternoon sun." He later adds "The anti-balling plates were clutch and one of the best features on the G10. They shrugged off unwanted snow so well that I didn’t even notice the struggle bus others were boarding until people were yelling for me to stop so they could angrily whack at their heels with their ice axes."

Read the full review from Dirtbag Dreams here


Gear Review: Grivel Shuttle

The gear squad from the outdoor blog Dirtbag Dreams recently tested the Grivel Shuttle plaquette style belay device in the Flatirons and Boulder Canyon. The reviewer, Sean Smith is a guide for Denver Mountain Guiding. 

From the review: "All in all the Grivel Shuttle is a reliable belay plate. Its design allows for big wallers to combine pieces of kit to cut down on harness clutter, as well as offering the fast and light alpinist to have a solid belay on wet and icy ropes. The multiple orientations create some much-needed diversity in use for a single plate, allowing the leader to adapt to the speed of the situation that is not offered in the average belay plate."

Read the full review here


Gear Review: Beal Booster 9.7mm

The Beal Booster 9.7mm rope recently received some love from UKClimbing.com. In their review of the rope, the British review site called the rope "easy to flake," "resistant to kinking," "an extremely hard wearing rope that will take a lot of punishment," and "a sport climbing workhorse."

The Booster is part of Beal's Mountain Line of ropes that features dry treated cords for all-mountain applications. The rope excels as a sport climbing rope, but performs just as well in trad or alpine climbing. This rope weighs in at only 63 g/m, has a low impact force of 7.3 kn, and is rated to 9 UIAA falls. 

To read the full review of the Booster 9.7mm, take a look at the UKC site


Valandre Lafayette Recognized by Spanish Climbing Magazine

The Lafayette expedition sleeping bag was recently recognized as the gold winner in the sleeping bag category by Spanish climbing magazine Desnivel. The award is given for products that incorporate innovation as well as top of the line quality and function. 

The Lafayette Sleeping bag by Valandre is a super light bag that is perfect for fast and light alpine climbing missions. The bag packs down small, weighs in at just over two pounds, and uses 850+ fill goose down as insulation. 

To learn more, take a look at this post by Valandre, or visit the product page here


Cypher Vesta Sport Draws Featured in Climbing Magazine

The latest issue of Climbing Magazine features the Cypher Vesta Sport quickdraw in the gear review section of the magazine. The review features new and innovative products that Climbing Magazine testers have used and abused on the mountain. "Simple. Affordable. Durable. Lightweight" were only a few of the adjectives used to describe these draws from Cypher. Reviewers loved the fat dogbone for times that they had to bail while clipping, but also the fact that the nylon sling got skinnier at the ends in order to save a little weight.

To read the full review, and hear some rad stories from the climbing community, check out the July / August issue of Climbing Magazine.


Grivel Zen Featured in Climbing Magazine

The July/August 2016 issue of Climbing Magazine focuses on alpine climbing and the skills and equipment necessary for long days on the mountain. The gear review of gear hauling backpacks names the Grivel Zen 40 pack as the best "Burly Workhorse." The review calls the pack "light and tougher than nails" and mentions that it can "take heavy abuse and still perform."

To read the full review, and see the other products that Climbing magazine recommends check out this month's issue on newsstands now.


Gear Review: Valandre Shocking Blue Neo

The outdoor gear experts at Gear Institute recently published a review of the Valandre Shocking Blue Neo sleeping bag. During a 12 night trip in the Ozark Mountains, the reviewers used the bag in temperatures well below freezing and were able to gain a pretty good understanding of exactly what the bag can handle. 

In the review, they said "The Valandre Shocking Blue is a very lightweight and technical sleeping bag with the best warmth to rate ratio in this category. Adding later, "The Valandre Shocking Blue is roomy and warm for its weight. The baffles allow for the down inside the bag to “puff” up, creating a very comfortable fit and feel. It has the most technical collar and hood on any bag I have tested and a foot box that allows me to point my large feet up into the air all make for a very comfortable sleeping bag."