This axe is as close to perfect as they come. I've compared it to other piolets from Petzl, CAMP, Grivel, and REI, and it just beats them all. It's incredibly light, the head is comfortable to hold when climbing, and the head cuts into ice and holds as well as anything. My only qualm is that the brushed aluminum handle doesn't grip super well, so if you don't have a leash, it's worth making one out of some parachute cord, or buying a grip to put on the handle. All in all, it's a well balanced axe, and for the money, I wouldn't buy anything else.