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Kahtoola test

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  • Ed St. Cin
    Hello, I spent today at a local ski resort putting the Khatoolas through several tests. The ski resort closed 4-1-01. I had the place to myself save, a handful
    Message 1 of 2 , Apr 5, 2001
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      Hello,
      I spent today at a local ski resort putting the Khatoolas through several tests.
      The ski resort closed 4-1-01. I had the place to myself save, a handful of workers on snowcats. 
      In addition to my own weight [230#]; I carried 14# of gear.
      Today's objectives were to see how the Kahtoolas worked on:
      1. Soft snow
      2. Hard-packed snow
      3. Ice
      4. During seated glissades
      5. During fast moving self arrests
      6. Traversing snow fields
      7. Ascending and descending steep snow covered slopes.
      I was able to try each scenario several times except ice. I could not find any ice.
      The Kahtoolas worked well in hard-packed [groomed] snow and in rotting ungroomed snow. The only situation that calls for some attention was snow balling under my boots. Once when I was getting direct sunlight on rotten snow an uncomfortable amount of snow built up under the crampons. I knocked the snow off. Cloud cover returned. And no more balling was noticed. I believe coating the Aluminum with a hard wax [ski base wax] will stop all the balling. I will try it and post my results.
      The Kahtoolas handled well ascending and descending the fall line on steep slopes as well as traversing. After having them on my Morrel medium weight boots for a few minutes, I was able to walk confidently anywhere I wanted to go. As a control I walked several minutes on the groomed slopes without the Kahtoolas. Without them I had to concentrate on my footing and take care when placing my boots.
      For seated glissades I used a sheet of heavy visqueen to increase my speed. I was trying to simulate a fast, sudden slide like might happen if say a cornice broke. When the thrill of speed was overcome by a sense of dread I rolled off the visqueen and planted my ice axe for a self arrest. I wanted to know if the Kahtoolas would catch and send me tumbling. I tried this 8-10 times. They never turned me. The forward picks being pointed down instead of forward save the day here. Each time I came to a safe, controlled stop.
      The crampons stayed on my boots all day long without needing to be tightened.
      They did no damage to my boots nor to my windpants.
      They show almost no wear after a full day [ the color is nicked in a couple of places - might have been rocks].
      I am very pleased with these. If I were going out again tomorrow, I would choose these over my Camp no-slip crampons, my Atlas Snow-Trakers or traditional mountaineering crampons because I believe they are the most versatile for mountain hiking.
      Think Good Thoughts
      Play as if Life were the prize
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