Black Diamond Raven Ice Axe
In one form or another, the world’s greatest climbers have been bringing the Black Diamond Raven ice axe to the top of the most challenging mountains for more than 25 years. One of the very first products the company ever made, the Raven is BD’s classic mountaineer’s piolet — an axe for non-technical ice and snow climbs that might require solid self arrest ability and chopping steps to make ascending steep slopes easier. It’s overkill for simple, early-season backpacking trips that might require minimal snow travel, but it has exactly the weight and girth of an axe that will be in your hand day in and day out. Not that this classic piece ever needed any improvement, but in 2009 it was updated with a redesigned pick that stabs into the ice a little better, plus an anodized shaft that cuts the weight paint once added. [$80; blackdiamondequipment.com]
TIP: Tape some foam to the head of the axe, right where you grip it. Metal is a great conductor of cold, and this will minimize that.
For access to exclusive gear videos, celebrity interviews, and more, subscribe on YouTube!Back to top