Ice climbing equipment ?

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samson19

 
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Ice climbing equipment ?

by samson19 » Sat Nov 07, 2015 3:03 am

First time Ice climbing, can I wear snowboarding boots for ice climbing or any hiking boots does it matter ? does it matter what kind of helmet I wear also ? How about ice climbing axe's I see straight ones and curved ones ?

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mfox79

 
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Re: Ice climbing equipment ?

by mfox79 » Sat Nov 07, 2015 1:20 pm

Snowboard boots might work with strap on crampons but would be miserable. you'll want a boot with a full steel shank. The problem with hiking boots and snowboard boots is that there is too much flex to be able to front point. As for Ice tools I started off with a set of really old straight shaft tools they got me up routes up to WI4 but with my knuckles in constant contact with the ice I would get screaming barfies really easy. I upgraded last year to a modern set of curved shaft tools and found I had a much better time. Hope that helps.

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ExcitableBoy

 
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Re: Ice climbing equipment ?

by ExcitableBoy » Sat Nov 07, 2015 3:58 pm

No, you cannot wear snowboarding or hiking boots to ice climb in. You need ice climbing/mountaineering boots with a full shank. You can rent plastic boots from REI and many other climbing shops that will do a great job for you. You will need to wear a climbing helmet, hard shelled helmets are generally preferred for ice climbing as they can sustain repeated blows from falling ice without getting damaged like some of the soft shelled helmets. Ice tools have evolved tremendously in the past 15 years from straight shafted using wrist leashes to curved with ergonomic handles mean for use without wrist leashes. Generally, buy the latest model you can afford, which should be some type of curved tool, or better yet, take a course and rent all your gear.

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nartreb

 
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Re: Ice climbing equipment ?

by nartreb » Sat Nov 07, 2015 9:07 pm

You won't be able to fit your crampons onto snowboarding boots. Forget that idea.

I've ice-climbed in hiking boots, using rigid crampons. It's feasible, but let's just say I won't be doing that again.

Hard-shell helmet, no question. Especially if you're insisting on climbing someplace like Huntington Ravine where you can expect people above you dropping ice onto your head all day long.

I'll re-iterate my earlier advice: get a guide. Your guide will give you an inventory list and help you rent what you need.

I'm kind of tempted to edit this post and encourage you to wear snowboard boots, as being unable to attach crampons just might be enough to dissuade you from getting in way over your head.

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samson19

 
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Re: Ice climbing equipment ?

by samson19 » Mon Nov 09, 2015 2:07 am

Thank You: Nartres , Excitable , Mfox79 for your advice on buying equipment,I'm looking to go to Starved Rock its in IL, its a State Park which has ice climbing ( 4 waterfalls) two of them r for beginners, ice climbing is free but they do not rent equipment been looking at play it again sports they had no glue if gear was ok to use for ice climbing..Nartres yes I plan getting some partners to climb with,matter of fact my wife and I was away visiting are best friends in Indianapolis, to my surprise I found out one of are other friends been ice climbing for the past 20 yrs making contact with him for some training. I want to go to M.T Washington and make it to the top of O dell or central gully , and be like Rocky Balboa and YELL YO ADRIAN i did it, or watch the video...https://youtu.be/bB7Mxdt5ekY I also contacted Synnott Mountain to get a Instructor when i go there in March 2016...any advice on clothing? Thanks again...

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CClaude

 
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Re: Ice climbing equipment ?

by CClaude » Tue Nov 10, 2015 2:33 am

as for clothing for ice climbing that will depend. If its below freezing and the climb isn't in the sun, I'll wear a soft shell pants and fleece jacket. If its above freezing or in the sun, chances are it will be running with water (which should make you question if its a good idea if you should even be there since I've had climbs collapse within 30 minutes after backing off them), but you could get soaked and pre-hypothermic REALLY fast (happened to me 50ft up a climb), and then you would want hard shell (Gore-tex or the equivalent). And gloves, lots of gloves, since they do get soaked. and a good belay jacket.

Going with a guide your first trip out is good advise. Ice climbing is less tolerant of mistakes than rock climbing. A fall on a pure ice climb (as opposed to a mixed climb) is likely to result in a fracture in the leg or pelvis due to the dynamics of crampons catching on the ice). The do not fall credo is good on ice today as it was 30 years ago.

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JHH60

 
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Re: Ice climbing equipment ?

by JHH60 » Tue Nov 10, 2015 2:51 am

Rental plastics are a good choice for trying out the sport. They will be suitably rigid for front pointing and will keep your feet warm. What they aren't very good at is anything involving ankle flexibility, which is particularly important for alpine ice climbing (where "French" technique is more efficient on low angle ice) and for harder water ice and mixed climbs. For that, insulated single leather or synthetic mountaineering boots are a better choice - e.g., Scarpa Mont Blanc or La Sportiva Nepal are classics. They are supportive but allow your ankle to flex much more than traditional plastic. They aren't cheap but a good quality boot should last you a long time.


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