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Climbing Harness.

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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby brenta » Tue Mar 01, 2011 3:44 pm

TimB wrote:Probably a dumb question, but what are the major differences between a summer and winter harness?
Durability, fit,??

To me it is primarily the ease of racking ice screws and clip ice tools. This, in turn, has to do with the ability to attach "ice clippers" to the harness.

The main advantage of a harness with adjustable leg loops is that it fits more people. I've had a BD Blizzard for six years and I have never unfastened its leg loops. As The Chief points out, if you want to be safe put on your harness before you need it and, specifically, before you don your crampons.
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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby mvs » Tue Mar 01, 2011 3:55 pm

I like having a harness (BD something or another) where I don't have to step into it at all. I buckle the waist, then buckle the leg loops. No balancing or such to do...I can even have snowshoes or skis on and it doesn't matter.
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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby TimB » Tue Mar 01, 2011 4:13 pm

brenta wrote:
TimB wrote:Probably a dumb question, but what are the major differences between a summer and winter harness?
Durability, fit,??

To me it is primarily the ease of racking ice screws and clip ice tools. This, in turn, has to do with the ability to attach "ice clippers" to the harness.

The main advantage of a harness with adjustable leg loops is that it fits more people. I've had a BD Blizzard for six years and I have never unfastened its leg loops. As The Chief points out, if you want to be safe put on your harness before you need it and, specifically, before you don your crampons.


Thanks for the info, brenta!

I was just reading in one of Ed Viester's books about some lady climbing Everest that failed to properly secure her harness-she fell all the way down the mountain.
Bad deal.
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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby bearbreeder » Wed Mar 02, 2011 12:39 am

IMO .. get one with

- self locking/adjusting buckle ... so you dont forget to double back every time you take on/off the harness
- adjustable leg loops ... so as others have said, you can take on/off the harness without having to step through your crampons
- 4+ gear loops ... when you do trad youll appreciate the extra space
- drop seat ... so you can drop yr leg loops and take a dump in the middle of a glacier while still tied in
- ice clipper slots ... not needed but nice to have for those screws
- comfortable to hang in ... that way you can use it for trad, sport, alpine, etc ...

you can get one of those light alpine harness, but for a longer term use a full featured harness will do multiple jobs ... the tradeoff is of course some extra weight ... it all depends on how much climbing youll want to do in the future ... but my guess is that youll eventually want to climb at least moderate trad
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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby The Chief » Wed Mar 02, 2011 1:31 am

The more gadgets and buckles and what ever on ones harness, the more potential to forget to fully secure anyone of them, bare handed and exposed to the elements thus opening the door to the ultimate ill fate deal of failure when the wind is howling and it is colder than shit in a frozen hell.


KISS will keep you alive when the weather is kicking your ass or any other situ arises that simplicity will make life easier to make it through the deal.

I always laugh when I hear folks advise to get buckled leg loops so one can take a dump easier. One must still loosen the swami in order to pull your britches/underwear down in order to expose the butt. Why not just pull the harness down with the britches and then simply tightening the swami buckle after pulling up the britches. Simpler and faster with less operations and checks to deem the harness safe and good to go. One can also remain tied in thus reducing redoing that critical evolution. I do it all the time and have done so for a longass time.


Again, it is all personal preference.
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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby drpw » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:53 am

To be fair as well, the buckle on my friend's Couloir has broken and is now just tied to the leg loopp until it get's replaced.
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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby Luc » Thu Mar 03, 2011 2:55 pm

I've got a summer and a winter harness:
Arc'teryx R320 for summer trad.
BD Blizzard for ice climbing and a little aid in the summer.

For an all purpose Mountain/Alpine harness, I'd go for the Alpine Bod, it's as simple as can go and the swami never has to be removed. Probably one of the fastest harness to put on and off with all your gear on.

I used an Alpine Bod during the first couple years I was climbing (rock and ice), it was a no-nonsense experience, apart from the webbing getting wet and staying wet, I never had any complaints. They've probably changed the webbing material since then to prevent the water retention.

FYI, I've used Nikwax Rope Proof on some webbing and accessory cord in the past, can be used on a harness also. I've heard using liquid fabric softener works pretty well too.
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Re: Climbing Harness.

Postby FRhoderick » Fri Mar 04, 2011 10:13 pm

The Chief wrote:The more gadgets and buckles and what ever on ones harness, the more potential to forget to fully secure anyone of them, bare handed and exposed to the elements thus opening the door to the ultimate ill fate deal of failure when the wind is howling and it is colder than shit in a frozen hell.


KISS will keep you alive when the weather is kicking your ass or any other situ arises that simplicity will make life easier to make it through the deal.

I always laugh when I hear folks advise to get buckled leg loops so one can take a dump easier. One must still loosen the swami in order to pull your britches/underwear down in order to expose the butt. Why not just pull the harness down with the britches and then simply tightening the swami buckle after pulling up the britches. Simpler and faster with less operations and checks to deem the harness safe and good to go. One can also remain tied in thus reducing redoing that critical evolution. I do it all the time and have done so for a longass time.


Again, it is all personal preference.


While I do not disagree with your statement and you clearly have the mileage to back it up, exactly what is too much? LIke you say, personal preference?
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