One of the mantras that we go by here at Liberty Mountain is "We use the gear that we sell." In order to round up the best gear to distribute to gear shops, we are constantly testing new gear to prove its quality.
A few of Liberty Mountain's employees started a weekly climbing tradition of going out to a nearby crag right after work to test gear, shoot photos, and to obviously have fun and stay in shape. Their canyon of choice so far has been Big Cottonwood Canyon. With its numerous quartzite crags that are easily accessible, BCC is a great place to climb right after work before the darkness quickly sets in.
Michael Portanda is Liberty Mountain's Digital Assets Manager, A.K.A. Mr. Photographer. When he packs for climbing, it's like he's packing for a weeklong vacation, rolling suitcase and all. He bounces back and forth from climbing to shooting photos...so all the extra equipment is really needed. No extra shoes in those bags, just extra lenses.
|Michael Portanda, Digital Assets Manager at Liberty Mountain, heading up Rebel Yell in Big Cottonwood Canyon.|
Photo by Benjamin Eaton.
Jason Shumaker is one of Liberty Mountain's Sales Reps. He is a man of the mountains. Not only does he live on the cliffs and works for an awesome outdoor company, he is on the board of director of the Salt Lake Climber Alliance. Climbing with this guy is always a blast.
|Jason Shumaker, Sales Rep at Liberty Mountain, heading up the notorious Goodro's Wall.|
Photo by Michael Portanda.
Benjamin Eaton is Liberty Mountain's Communications Specialist. He's a little obsessed with climbing and should probably get a life. Luckily his wife and two little boys enjoy going out with him on climbing trips...it's a family sport.
|Benjamin Eaton yelling at the small holds on Rebel Yell.|
Photo by Michael Portanda.
In regards to gear testing, these evening warriors have recently been paying a lot of attention to the newest quickdraws made by Cypher. Their quivers have donned racks of both the Cypher Echo Mix and Cypher Firefly II quickdraws.
Cypher Echo Mix Quickdraw | Cypher Firefly II Quickdraw
The Cypher Echo Mix Quickdraw is a full size draw featuring a keylock Echo biner on the bolt end for catch-free operation while a hooded wire gate sits on the rope end for super wide gate clearance and reduced gate flutter during a fall. Echo carabiners are hot forged, providing a strength rating of 25kN and weighing in at 35-40 grams. The Echo Mix Quickdraw has been a Liberty Mountain favorite as an all-around draw for all the disciplines of climbing, be it sport, trad, or ice.
"The Echo draw is perfect for racking multiple amounts of draws up a route, especially if I'm not sure how many bolts it may be. When I'm bringing up 20 draws and it feel like I'm not carrying that many. Having an extra draw and not feeling its weight is a big bonus for my ability to onsite the route." -Michael Portanda, Digital Assets Manager
The Cypher Firefly II Quickdraw uses hot forged technology to maximize strength and minimize weight. Color-coded bent wire-gate biners sit on both ends of the draw to keep things light. The Firefly II carabiner is a full size biner that weighs in at 32 grams and is rated at 22kN. The rope-bearing surface inside the Firefly II biner provides for a smoother climbing experience. Choose the longer length slings and this quickdraw makes for a great trad climbing tool to extend any cam or nut.
"The Firefly II is a lightweight draw that doesn’t skimp on performance and efficiency. The large gate opening allows me to clip without getting my fingers stuck like on other lightweight models. Not to mention, they're super sexy looking." -Jason Shumaker, Sales Rep