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Do alpinists dream of eclectic crampons?
Billed as the most versatile technical crampon on the market today, The Camp USA - Cassin Blade Runner Crampon devours everything from ice climbs, technical mixed routes, and traditional alpine climbs thanks to a design that can only be described as innovative. Offering added stability when you are front-pointing on vertical ice, the Blade Runner's V-shaped chromoly steel front platform provides the rigidity necessary to eliminate the flexibility and play that can leave even experienced climbers feeling insecure on technical terrain.
The way in which the heel slide attaches to the linking bar combines the stability of vertical frames with the precision and adjustability of horizontal frame crampons. The heel slide is made with Sandvik Nanoflex steel that is incredibly strong, considering how thin and lightweight it is. Apart from reducing the overall weight of the crampon, the patented heel slide also adds additional flex, which makes the crampon more comfortable to walk in while alpine climbing. Adding to the Blade Runner's versatility, Cassin made the front points interchangeable between a dual- and mono-point setup, with each being easily adjusted between a centered or offset position to accommodate the various routes and surfaces you'll be able to climb with these go-anywhere, do-anything crampons.
- Camp's most versatile crampon for ice, mixed, and alpine climbing
- Burly V-shaped chromoly steel offers a stiff and rigid feel
- Lightweight and flexible rear heel slide made from Sandvik Nanoflex
- Interchangeable front points convert between a dual or mono setup
- Front points can be adjusted between a centered or offset position
- Front plate reduces balling (anti-balling plate is included)
- Automatic binding fits mountaineering boots with heel and toe welts
- Item #CSN0044
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
I just finished climbing for 3 days with these crampons paired up with Scarpa Phantom Techs. The fit on the boot is a little weird where the rear plate doesn't line up exactly with the boot but they still worked well and I didn't notice any issues when climbing. I have climbed with Petzl Dart and Dartwin and I prefer these over both. I didn't feel like I could climb anything different then what I would have otherwise but being able to adjust and replace the points is great. Additionally, there is some weight penalty but I do like the anti-balling plate that the Petzl's dont have. I was recently climbing with a friend with Dart's and he was definitely having more balling than I was. Obviously you can clear it out pretty easy but its easy to forget about it and loose traction when you need it most. I have plans to do a couple days with Alpine and ice on the same trip and I can replace the vertical points with horizontal points as well so no need to carry two sets of crampons or make a compromise. The change over only takes about 3 minutes. As some of the other reviews have indicated, the crampon bag is small so its a tight fit (if at all) unless you compress the crampons (which is a pain).
Worth the $$
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
This is probably one of the only pieces of gear Camp USA will tell you that "Will make you a better ice climber". The way the front points were designed instill confidence with every kick. I have been using BD's for a few years and tried out the Blade Runners, I was floored with their performance.
When you get the crampon you will notice a few things nobody else is doing. The rear part of this crampon has a section that locks the boot into place. The front part has been changed to accommodate the rocker of today's modern mountaineering boots.
The way the secondary dual points are engaged really take some fatigue off your calves. The main front point was also developed to be used on thin ice and not fracture ice like competitors. Id be lying if I told you I knew all about the engineering of this product because its complex, I just know it works. The picture is of Ian Osteyee and Jesse Mattner, look up their climbing resumes, they both helped develop this crampon.
Feel free to hit me up at email@example.com or 801-736-6398.
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
I have a hard time believing there is a better crampon on the market currently, no matter what your pursuit is. You have up to 5 positions you can install the front points on, giving you tremendous freedom when setting the crampon up for any objective. Also because the front points are interchangeable, you can have a single crampon to do everything: snow, ice, or mixed. This feature alone will likely eliminate 2 pairs of crampons for most people (it has for me). Every detail of these crampons were well thought out and include features few other crampons come with. The integral heel piece and center bar make a considerably stiffer crampon than standard three piece construction. Additionally this integral piece and has two small points for providing purchase on bulges of ice which would "high center" on other crampons. The location of the secondary points is outstanding, and they consistently engage the ice providing you with a bomber platform to stand on. If you are used to 3 piece crampon construction this 2 piece will take a little getting use to, as you generally have to completely separate the 2 pieces to fit them in crampon bags, however the added rigidity makes up for this shortfall. I would consider carrying a small allen key with these crampons to keep the front points snug. While they are fitted with locking washers, it's nice to be able to snug them down at the end of the day or before you start. The only thing I would say needs improvement is the heel welt locking lever, it has functioned fine but has a cheap feel to it. Overall an outstanding crampon and incredibly versatile.