04 februari 2012

Gear: Petzl Lynx crampons

I've used the new Petzl Lynx crampons for the Ice Climbing course I did recently, and have already mentioned them in the post about Ice Climbing Gear. I thought I would also do a more in-depth review.
Petzl Lynx review

Petzl describe the Lynx crampons as modular crampons for ice and mixed climbing, with leverlock universal bindings. 'Modular' refers to the changeable frontpoints and bindings of the Lynx.
According to the box, the crampons weigh 1080 grams, though this depends on the chosen configuration - mono point obviously weighs less then dual point and also the choice of the changeable front binding influences weight. According to Petzl, monopoint configuration, with no anti-bot plates fitted is supposed to weigh 910 grams.

In the pictures below you see what the supplied package looks like, and what's inside. The crampons, a crampon-bag and a little bag with a tool and extra parts.
The ability to change from dual to mono, make long or short frontpoints, or even asymmetrical frontpoints, sets these crampons apart from the rest. Petzl supply most of what you need to make these changes to the crampons. The only thing I used to change the crampons that was not included, was a wrench (bottom left in the picture below), which i used to stabilize the bolt so I was able to loosen it.
The process is pretty easy; you remove the bolt, remove the frontpoints, remove one of the tubular thingies from the anti-bott plate that keeps the frontpoint in place and replace it with a larger one, push said thingies to the side of the crampon so a space opens up in the middle for one fronpoint, place the frontpoint, either long or short (that's what the 2 holes in the middle of the frontpoint are for), put the bolt back in, screw tight - done. 
The result, on the left a mono-point and on the right a dual-point configuration:
Petzl Lynx mono point

The crampons fit boots up to EU size 45 (~UK11, ~US12), which meant I had to replace the linking bars with the larger size. I already had a pair of those, fitted to my Petzl Vasak crampons. Proof the Petzl crampon linking bars are interchaneable between different types of crampons too :-).

Summing up; 

The Good:
These are a pair of do-it-all crampons, although according to Petzl, they're less then optimal for use in normal mountaineering (glaciers, snow fields), like the terrain you would use a pair of Petzl Vasaks for. I'm sure though, the Lynxes will work there too. On Ice and Mixed however, they're great.

The Bad:
Nothing bad really. The only thing is that I had to use my own wrench (luckily I had a good sized one) - Petzl could've included a simple one in the package. Another thing that could have been added is, which is only due to my big feet, I would've appreciated a pair of long linking-bars.

The Lynxes in their natural habitat.

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