The slogan, “If I can’t climb it, I won’t ski it,” helps keep me out of trouble. However, come spring, there are situations when a steep slope may be too firm to climb, but in time will soften into good skiing. Climbing steep firm slopes requires the right tools, namely boot crampons. But, for many ski-centric mountaineering adventures, a full 10- or 12-point technical crampon is overkill. Enter the new 5-point TechCrampon 250. It’s a half-crampon that connects with tech-binding compatible boots and offers a lightweight alternative to a full crampon. The “250” in the name references the actual weight per pair in grams.
The design works with the tech binding toe fittings on your boot. The attachment system is simple and secure. But because all boots are a little differnent, fitting the crampon to your boot requires an initial set-up phase where you must set the toe bumper spacing. Once set, the crampon is quick to attach and remove. It also packs nicely when nested into a set of ski crampons.
According to TechCrampon designer, Manfred Quaeck, the crampon is the result of several design phases, but the basic attachment concept has been the same from the start.
Like a ski crampon that only gets used when conditions and terrain demand it, the TechCrampon is a niche tool for ski mountaineers. It serves skiers looking for a lightweight boot crampon alternative. Given you only get five points at the front of your boot, the TechCrampon is for climbing, not descending, as it does not offer the security of heel points when walking down a slope. That’s why you have skis.
The TechCrampon 250 offers solid purchase when front pointing on snow and booting up or across more modest hard snow slopes. It’s made of steel and the points are significantly sharper, and more robust, than any aluminum crampon I have.
Rank beginners will be best served by spending some time with a standard 12-point crampon. But skiers with with crampon experience looking to simplify their kit for technical ski tours will appreciate the TechCrampon 250’s simplicity.
Contact ProSki and Mountain Service in North Bend, WA to get a pair. $119.