Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2009 5:42 pm Posts: 124 Location: Seattle, WA
I'm sure this topic has been covered ad nauseam already, but I couldn't find anything when I did a search for it (must be doing something wrong). Anyway, what's been your experience using crampons with soft boots? What crampons do you use? I have a pair of Grivel G10's (regular width, not the wide) and they fit my Malamutes pretty well. I've only used them a few times, though; haven't really put them to the test on anything gnarly. I'm planning on hitting some bigger lines this season and doing more splitboard mountaineering and I'm wondering how well it's going to work. Do any of you have experience climbing bigger peaks/doing bigger lines with a soft boot/crampon combination? Please, do tell...
Real splitmo terrain sucks in wide softboots. I was out with Russman the other day and his Deeluxe boots look like a big step in the right direction but there are still compromises. I went to hardboots after having an interesting time on frozen snow on a steep glacier in my Driver Xs and strap on crampons (but obviously still compromises). My boots were wide enough that I was booting out and pulling the points of the 'poons out of the snow while sidestepping. Try out what you have in progressively more difficult terrain that leaves options to bail to see where your comfort limit is. It's cheaper than your alternatives but will require a bit of patience before tackling your bigger lines.
Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 2:16 am Posts: 96 Location: New Zealand
Comparing my Spark boots (original not the XV) with my Fitwell, with crampons on, the Spark toe tends to bend and crush your toes on steeper terrain, whereas the Fitwell boot toe is solid and toes are not crushed. Crampon feels better and more solid attached too on the Fitwell because the boot lower section is stiffer and deforms a lot less up front when there is a lot of load on your front points. Fitwell not as bulky either so it fits under my climbing pants a lot easier. I am not even running a semi auto, just a relatively new pair of Petzl Vasak 12 strapon crampons that are rock solid. Check this pic of Ruari Macfarlane for a good shot of the boots and crampons in action in the NZ Mt Cook area.
_________________ SPLITN2.COM - Aotearoa Back Country Developments Ltd | Christchurch New Zealand | firstname.lastname@example.org | Custom Splitboards | Spark R&D | Fitwell Backcountry
Joined: Sat Dec 15, 2007 5:44 pm Posts: 620 Location: The Magic City
Sometimes I'll just do a Google search and end it with "splitboard.com". Seems to work a lot better than the in-built search function here for finding threads. FYI: here are three with exactly the same title (or very similar) as yours:
I've glossed through them and though some of them are years old, still some useful info on there.
For what it's worth, I use the BD Contact on my 1st gen Deeluxe Sparks. No complaints at all (other than the Contacts being heavy, which is unavoidable with a steel crampon. At least you get the durability). I have done just about everything you can think of in them barring climbing true vertical water ice and the setup works pretty well. I've never had the issue that Richie describes above and I have done quite a bit of frontpointing in them...