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Gear Review



Page Type: Gear Review

Object Title: Raven

Manufacturer: Black Diamond

Your Opinion: 
 - 41 Votes


Page By: John

Created/Edited: Apr 10, 2002 / Apr 10, 2002

Object ID: 210

Hits: 6695 


This mountaineering axe has a 17-4 investment cast stainless steel head that was designed with both beauty and function in mind, this svelte piolet has a neutral-clearance pick which tapers back to a wasp-waisted platform. Finger notches on each side of her head make for a secure grip and allow for quick, smooth hand rotation when going into a self-arrest. The curved adze chops steps and clears snow and blasts ice with ease. It's also light and litheā€”for the 7075-T6 extruded shaft cuts weight to a minimum without a sacrifice in strength. Available with or without grip.
  • Great piolet for alpine security and support
  • Stainless steel head is durable; 7075 shaft is light and strong
  • Steel spike has narrow width for speed and a wide profile for braking
Similar Products: Grivel Air Tech Racing, Grivel Pamir



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Poor ClimberGreat Mountain Axe

Voted 5/5

I just recently bought and used a Raven Ice Axe. It did everything an Ice axe should, including saving my butt three times the first weekend I used it! Needless to say, I am pleased with its performance.
Posted May 30, 2007 11:34 pm

2skinnersLightweight and works great!!!

Hasn't voted

I am still alive. It works. Enough said!!
Posted Jun 17, 2007 4:24 am

Tie-Dye MikeAwesome

Hasn't voted

Awesome and durable, all the above are correct, and a little more comfortable on the grip that the Raven Pro, even sacrificing the weight. Great even for dry picking...
Posted Sep 5, 2007 1:06 am

stephoExelent Axe

Voted 5/5

Very well made
Posted Nov 24, 2007 3:34 pm

strat1080Excellent all around axe

Voted 4/5

I'm 5'9 and the 65cm model works excellent for me. Couldn't imagine anyting better. The head is sculpted in a manner in which you can confidently grasp it in the self-belay and self-arrest positions without your fingers hurting after a long time. It seems to be just the right weight as well. Light enough to pack yet sturdy enough for solid use of many techniques.
Posted Dec 21, 2007 2:30 am

96avs01No regrets

Voted 5/5

This axe has always performed as expected. Completely solid, no doubt.
Posted Apr 3, 2008 5:16 pm


Voted 5/5

Light weight. Standard. Great. Not a bad word to be had.
Posted May 1, 2008 6:23 pm

Judd97Great Ax

Voted 5/5

A good, basic ice ax. Just about all you need for basic mountaineering. I've only had to self arrest with it once, but it worked great. Light and fits well in the hand. If you are doing basic snow travel/mountaineering, I'd highly recommend this ax.
Posted Aug 11, 2008 8:13 pm

Justin PucciBlack Diamond Raven Ice Axe

Voted 4/5

This has been a really great tool so far since picking it up earlier this year. It is slightly heavier than some of the more ultralight-type axes, but it feels solid and fits my hands wonderfully, as I don't get sore after "axe-step-stepping" for hours on end. I've also used it to cut steps in snow and hard ice, which it seems to do quite well. Fortunately, it's solid enough so that it doesn't send a huge shock back up your arms and into your body on each impact. For the price, it's hard to beat this axe!
Posted Sep 28, 2008 2:34 am

Alex WoodGreat Ice Axe

Voted 5/5

Black Diamond wasn't lying when they advertised this ice axe. Great Ice Axe and my first too!
Posted Dec 26, 2008 8:20 pm

farrisglDittos ..a very good axe

Voted 5/5

I have used my Raven since early 2002 beginning on Hood and Rainier. While I normally like to upgrade gear, I just can't find a reason to do so. This is just a fine utility ice axe.
Posted Mar 26, 2009 1:23 am

BascuelaWorking fine...

Voted 5/5

I vouch for it.
Posted Oct 14, 2009 12:13 am

mtybumpoGreat Axe.

Voted 5/5

This is my first ice axe and I have not been disappointed. It has never let me down.
Posted Dec 16, 2009 8:38 pm

GERTSThe one to have..

Voted 5/5

I love this axe! I have friends that have others and the all want to use mine on summit day..
Posted Feb 16, 2010 7:42 pm


Voted 5/5

Awesome newbie ice axe.

Slog away!
Posted Apr 26, 2010 2:28 pm

MountainjeffNot going to be replaced any time soon

Voted 5/5

I have the 70 cm model and have used it extensively over the past 5 years. The finish is starting to wear off, but the ax itself is still as solid as ever. I like that the regular model has a bit more heft than the pro. I have used it for anything from easy snow slogs to 55 degree snow and ice couliers (with a second tool). I will buy another BD Raven when my current one wears out (which I can't ever see happening...)
Posted May 1, 2011 9:52 pm

asaking11Sweet Axe

Voted 5/5

I think that after over 30 positive reviews that this ice axe pretty much speaks for itself. I'm definitely a firm believer in it.
Posted Nov 13, 2011 5:07 am


Hasn't voted

Probably the least expensive ice ax out there. I've taken mine up several routes on Shasta and a few other snow climbs and have been satisfied with its performance. Its a bit too heavy to take on longer backpacking trips that may involve a bit of snow.
Posted Jul 28, 2013 10:39 pm

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