/ Crampons - how far will C2 take me?

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BenCollis - on 12 Jun 2017
I've been using my grivel airtechs for a while now, mostly for grade I/II Scottish stuff. I'm going to the alps this summer and was wondering what grade could I climb up to with these mountaineering crampons? Could I do Chere Coulouir? Would it handle 75 degree ice slopes? I basically can't afford C3 crampons this season so was wondering how dangerous/crazy it would be to go hard with such basic crampons.

Ben
Alex Riley on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

My mate led grade VI in g12s this last winter. They have slightly bigger front points than the airtecs, but I would say that you should be fine with c2s on stuff like chere..
TobyA on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

Grivel G12s https://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=215691
Climbing Technology Nuptse https://www.ukclimbing.com/images/dbpage.html?id=161101

Both "C2", the Nuptses in particular have shortish points a bit like the Airtechs. I wouldn't worry about it too much. If it feels hard, that's you and because it is. Not because you have the the wrong crampons. ;-)
Doug on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

think back a little to the sort of gear used for the first ascents of most alpine (& Scottish) classics.
BnB - on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

I've climbed up to Tech 5 in Airtechs without any tribulations and no doubt a better climber could go much harder. But be sure that the boot is proper stiff however.
Goucho on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

I've climbed up to grade VI Scottish and ED2 alpine ice in old bendy Salewa crampons on old leather Galibier boots, and I hardly consider myself a demon on ice

So its not so much that you can't climb hard stuff in C2's, but that C3's will makes it feel easier.
planetmarshall on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to Doug:
> think back a little to the sort of gear used for the first ascents of most alpine (& Scottish) classics.

True, but with respect to the OP, few of us are the Jimmy Marshall or Gaston Rébuffat of our day and so will take any advantage we can get.

That said, I co-led the Cheré with a friend who wore C2s and bendy boots and he still lives.
Post edited at 19:12
BenCollis - on 12 Jun 2017


Thanks for the assurance guys, I was worried that I'd be spending my whole time on easy terrain!

Cheers
JimmAwelon on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

Really it's down to the boot rather than the crampon. Are you boots B2 or B3? If they are B2 then your crampon behaves as a C2 crampon, if they are B3 then they almost make your crampon a C3 (save for the fastening system and vertical front points).
BenCollis - on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to JimmAwelon:

They're B2s. But they're Scarpa Manta Pros, so are pretty stiff for a B2 and feel quite solid on steep ground.
wee jamie on 12 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

I have airtechs and find the front points don't stick out enough for ice and crud. Something with bigger front points will make a difference. Having easy secure foot placements makes everything quicker, safer and therefore more enjoyable.
In reply to BenCollis:

A friend of mine led a pitch of grade V ice in G10 walking crampons once and seconded a grade V mixed pitch just above. This was in Greenland and he'd taken them as they were the lightest crampons he had. He's a good winter climber but not a superstar.
GarethSL on 13 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

You will be fine.

Not to mention horizontal front points are the mutts for alpine ice and snow.
ChrisH89 - on 16 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

I've led grade IV, 80(ish) degree ice in (blunt!) airtechs and didn't feel they were at their limits, and am also very much a punter on ice. My boots are Scarpa Rebel Lites, which are quite a bendy B2 and certainly not the best suited to steep ice, but were totally fine. I'd have no issues going for something like Chere Coulouir in them, though I think I'd take the file to them first...
CurlyStevo - on 16 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

Are you intending to lead or second the Chere Coulouir?
BenCollis - on 16 Jun 2017
In reply to CurlyStevo:

probably second, but I'd like to lead it at some point
steveforgrieve - on 16 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

I seconded Chere Couloir a couple of summers ago in Scarpa Mantas with same crampons as you. No issues.
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alexm198 - on 16 Jun 2017
In reply to BenCollis:

A mate of mine has led WI6 in C2 crampons and B2 boots. Sure, it would've been easier in C3/B3, but C2's won't hold you back.

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