12/1/2014
 
Who DOESN'T love Voile ski straps? Everything from field skin makeshift-attachment, to first aid, to attaching crampons to your pack - and a million more uses. Rugged and lightweight. Nice, inexpensive add-on item to your order, and you can always, always use more of these things. Bonus that you get a Skimo.co logo on them for the same price as a standard Voile strap. :)
12/1/2014
 
The newer stainless steel whippet has a major design flaw, IMO: the notch at the pick is ridiculously sharp and several people have had them break off. I haven't had mine break and will be sending it in for recall (kudos, BD), but it's also good to know that the kinds of use in which they've broken amounts to using it as a mountaineering axe on short sections of ice, not basic snow/avy-bed self-arrest as they were designed for. Fortunately BD has acknowledged the problem and come up with a solution.
12/1/2014
 
Touche! I hadn't considered the slip as it hits a snowy surface - that's definitely a design benefit of a shell. As for durability, I'm less concerned about what I'm going to be doing AFTER my head hits something -- besides stopping whatever it is I'm doing, and possibly seeking medical attention -- and more concerned about whether I will break the damn thing carting the helmet around. Starting an adventure with a non-intact helmet, or canceling an adventure because of a broken one seems like a major disad...
12/1/2014
 
This is my only review for a product I don't own, so take my impressions accordingly... The Dynafit PDG boot is by far my favorite of the many skimo boots I spent considerable time trying on. I tried both these and the more expensive carbon-fiber cuff model, in a few different sizes over an hour or two. First off, the weight is very impressive. Light weight in these boots is likely a function of thin liners with spandex-like ankle flex sections, and low shell volume (look at BSL vs mondo size). That said, ...
12/1/2014
 
I bring one of these whenever I anticipate having to do rappels when soloing rock or ice, but don't necessarily need a lead line. Most recently I used it as a single rope (I know) on the Direct Exum Ridge this past July. Come to think of it, my rope been up the grand twice in the past year and a half. Light, skinny, and dynamic. Not much experience with durability, but it doesn't have any wear from belaying and simul-climbing a few thousand feet of rock, and several long rappels, so I have no complaints. ...