When going for a long and cold one the gear is key in order to endure but more important to perform. So as we all know there is no one stop shopping when it comes to getting outfitted for real winter climbing. Its a huge struggle to find the right configuration for what to where on the hill. Usually at the end of the season the formula is in place but also worn out and impossible to replace.
What I find sad is that so many good companies and outdoor brands have fallen in the main stream track in order to appeal to greater audiences and bigger market shares. I can understand the market logic but non the less it makes it hard to find purpose "built" stuff for climbing.
One brilliant example is the lack of good gloves for North Face winter routes in the Alps as an example. A glove that works good for the Alps in winter would also work well on technical routes in Himalaya, Alaska and in Patagonia, but no such glove exist. I probed in to this issue with great disappointment before departing for G4 in May. Steve House told me good gloves for that kind of climbing are to expensive and no one can afford to make them or buy them. Well I like my fingers so I'd pay up.
How ever I stumbled in to CRUX and I have to say I'm impressed by what I have seen. I hope to be back with some live test data.
Coming up next will be a feature on Latok its history and an exclusive interview with Latok pioneer Michael Kennedy now Chief editor of Alpinist Magazine.