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[pct-l] Ice Ax

Selection in an ice ax depends on what you intend to be using it for. 
Since your note is to the PCT community, I assume you intend to use it
for early-season hiking in the High Sierra rather than true
mountaineering or ice climbing.  For hiking, you want it extra long but
as light as possible.  I have an ax made by Kong in Italy that,
although it wouldn't be my choice for glacier travel, is the best I
have seen for PCT purposes.  It is 34" long - long enough to
comfortably use as a cane for extended times - and made of aluminum.  I
bought it at a trade show; I have not seen it for sale at any store.

However, the most important thing about an ice ax is to take an intro
mountaineering course and practice with it.  For a quick intro to the
subject, check out a mountaineering textbook like "Freedom of the
Hills", available at any REI store.  If you are planning to ascend the
steep, snow-covered Forrester Pass in late May or early June, you will
need the skill of how to self-arrest with the ax to save your life in
the event you slip and fall.

Charlie Manson
PCT '90

Date: Wed, 28 Jun 2000 20:26:35 EDT
From: CitrusHicker@aol.com
Subject: [pct-l] What to look for in an ice axe?

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