Ice Tool and Ice Axe

An ice tool evolved from the ice axe, however it is more specialized for use in ice climbing. It is sometimes referred to as a technical axe to distinguish it from a mountaineering ice axe. For ice climbing,  The climber ascends an ice fall wearing crampons attached to ice climbing boots, with two ice tools, one in each hand. The ice climber keeps his weight balanced over the point where the crampons touch the ice. Each tool is then positioned, one over the other as he ascends the ice. The ice tool penetrates the ice and provides a grip for balance.The weight of an ice tool is important. The heavier tool will penetrate ice an packed snow easier. However, heavier is not necessarily better. The weight of an ice tool must be balanced by the ability of the climber to carry and swing it for hours at a time. Large climbers may choose a larger heavier tool, while a smaller climber may pick an ice tool that is somewhat smaller.

Ice Axe compared to an Ice Tool

An ice axe is used during alpine and mountaineering, or while traveling across ice, glacier or snowfields. An ice axe is often referred to as a mountaineering axe to separate and distinguish it from an ice tool. An ice axe is used to assist with the assent, to grab rock edges, cracks, and ledges. It is an invaluable device for stopping a slide or fall.

Ice Tool Size and Shape

The different types of ice climbing require a different tool design. For waterfall ice climbing the most popular length is 50 centimeters. Larger climbers may be able to use a slightly larger ice tool, around 55 centimeters. Smaller climbers may use a 45 centimeter tool. Waterfall and mixed ice climbing tool should have a modular design. The modular design allows you to change the pick, hammer, and adzes when they wear out. Some tools give you the option to use either a hammer or adze attachment. For alpine climbing, the tool has a straight shaft with a leash attached to the head. The purpose of a straight shaft is to allow the tool to be pounded down into snow as a secondary anchor. Never use an ice tool as the only anchor source.

Sections of an Ice Tool

Black Diamond Raven Ice Axe with Grip - Anodized Light Gray
Options: $94.95 - $99.95
Viper Ice Tool by Black Diamond
Options: $249.95 - $461.25
Black Diamond Raven Ice Axe
Options: $71.94 - $79.99
Black Diamond Slider Leash
Options: $16.95 - $33.90
Petzl Nomic Ice Axe
Petzl Gully
Camp USA Cassin X-All Mountain Ice Tool
Stubai Hornet Ice Tool
Grivel G1 Plus Axe
Options: $74.96 - $99.95
Grivel G1 Axe
Options: $56.21 - $74.95
Petzl Sum'Tec Ice Axe
Options: $127.48 - $199.95
Grivel G Zero Ice Axe
Options: $52.46 - $69.95
Camp Cassin X-All Mountain Ice Axe
Trucker's Friend All Purpose Survival Tool-Made in the USA
Black Diamond Slinger Leash
Options: $24.95 - $27.23
Black Diamond Ice Axe Protector
FiveJoy Military Folding Shovel Multitool (C1) - Tactical Entrenching Tool w/Case for Camping Backpacking Hiking Car Snow - Portable, Multifunctional, Compact Emergency Kit, Heavy Duty Survival Gear
Petzl Linkin Leash
Black Diamond Swift Ice Tool
Options: $139.95 - $354.11
Tactical Steel Multi-function Survival Shovel and Pick Axe, Collapses Down to Just 6.5" by Grizzly Peak
DMM Fly Adze Ice Axe, 50cm, Orange
Military Multifunction Folding Utility Shovel Ice Axe Hammer Handle Self-Driving Tool
Compact Survival Multi Tool Axe Card by Lion Gear - Stainless Steel, Multifunctional Survival Ax Multitool with Saw, Bottle Opener, Cutter, and Wrench - Survivor Emergency Kit For Camping, Hunting
Black Diamond Venom Adze
Options: $149.95 - $282.68
Steady Yeti Climbing Leash - 2 Pack Ice Axe Leashes
CAMP USA Corsa Ice Axe Green, 50cm
Petzl Pick & Spike Protector
Black Diamond Pick Protector
Options: $4.95 - $8.45
Black Diamond Lock-Down Leash
Options: $16.64 - $18.95
Petzl Quark Ice Tool
FiveJoy Military Entrenching Shovel with Hard Wood Handle (J2) - Shoveling, Digging, Cutting, Chopping, Throwing, Self-Defense - Keep in Trunk for Emergencies - Perfect for Camping and Off-Roading
Mountaintop 40 Liter Unisex Hiking/Camping Backpack
Options: $19.99 - $35.99
Petzl Summit Evo Ice Axe 52cm
Camp USA X Light Hammer Axe One Size
Petzl Summit Evo Ice Axe 59cm
Trango Raptor Ice Tool
Options: $173.95 - $174.95
Petzl Trigrest Hand Rest
Extension Tubes for FiveJoy (RS) Military Folding Shovel Multi Tool - 2 Piece Carbon Steel Handles w/ Case for Emergency Survival Kit, Entrenching Outdoors - Extend Your Leverage Power Efficiency
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