Lightest and strongest Friend ever.
Wild Country took the original camming device, put it on a diet, gave it all the features that climbers asked for, and then called it the Helium Friend. This updated design got color-coded anodizing for quick identification, so you can get the right piece quickly and protect yourself where you need to. If you happen to end up with a slightly tipped-out placement, the Helium Friend's cam stops provide an extra level of security and that last chance to keep gear from ripping. On the end opposite the newly design cam lobes Wild Country added a thumb loop to make placements easier and to give aid climbers an additional clip-in point on pitches where every inch counts.
- Thumb loop makes placements easier
- Longer stem allows deeper placements
- Each unit is up to 6% lighter than the previous version
- Up to 20% more range than older models
- Classic 13.75 cam angle maintains commitment to tested, proven, and familiar qualities of the Helium Friends
- Hot-forged for strength, and strength-rated to a generous 14kN each
Terms And Conditions
This Usage Agreement (the "Agreement") governs your conduct while using various services on the web site Backcountry.com and its affiliate web sites (collectively, the "Site"). All references to "we," "us," and "our" shall mean Backcountry.com and all references to "you" and "your" shall mean the user of the Site and Site Services. This Agreement applies to various services and activities on the Site as well as to gear review and product ratings (collectively, "Site Services"). Please read this Agreement carefully.
BY ACCESSING, BROWSING, AND USING THE SITE, ANY SITE SERVICES AND OTHER SERVICES THEREIN, YOU AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THIS AGREEMENT AND ITS TERMS. IF YOU DO NOT AGREE TO THIS AGREEMENT OR ANY SUBSEQUENT MODIFICATION THEREOF, DO NOT ACCESS, BROWSE OR OTHERWISE USE THE SITE OR SITE SERVICES, INCLUDING THE SUBMISSION OF ANY REVIEWS OR COMMENTS.
Any comments, reviews (including gear reviews and product ratings), posts, feedback, questions, answers, notes, messages, images, video, audio, materials, documents, data, graphics, ideas, suggestions or other communications (collectively, "User Content") you submit on the Site are not private or proprietary. By submitting User Content on or through the Site, you grant, assign and transfer to Backcountry.com all of your rights, title and interest, including without limitation, all intellectual property rights and moral rights, in and to such User Content. To the extent the preceding assignment and transfer is ineffective, you hereby grant Backcountry.com an irrevocable, royalty-free, worldwide, perpetual right and license to use, copy, modify, adapt, display, publish, archive, store, distribute, reproduce and create derivative works based upon such User Content, in any form, media, software or technology of any kind now existing or developed in the future.
By submitting such User Content on or through the Site, you are confirming that (a) you are the sole author of the User Content and the User Content originated with you and not copied in whole or in part from any other work; (b) you have obtained all necessary permissions associated with the User Content, including without limitation permissions relating to copyrights, trademarks, rights of publicity and/or rights of privacy; (c) the User Content does not contain hate speech or profanity and is not unlawful, threatening, abusive, harassing, tortuous, defamatory, vulgar, libelous, obscene, racially, ethnically or otherwise objectionable, an invasion of another's privacy, or otherwise in violation of this Agreement; (d) that you are not a minor and have the legal right and capacity to enter into and comply with this Agreement; (e) such User Content does not and will not, in any way, violate or breach any of the terms of this Agreement; and (f) Backcountry.com shall not in any circumstances be required to pay or incur any sums to any person or entity as a result of its use or exploitation of the User Content.
With respect to your conduct on the Site or while using the Site Services, you agree not to: (a) attempt to disguise the origin of any User Content transmitted to the Site Services whether through the Site or any third party site; (b) act in any manner that negatively affects other users' ability to use the Site and Site Services; (c) impersonate any person or entity, including without limitation, a manufacturer or owner of any product, or falsely state or otherwise misrepresent your affiliation with a person or entity; (d) interfere with the Site or Site Services, or servers or networks connected to the Site or Site Services, or disobey any requirements, procedures, policies, or regulations of networks connected to the Site or Site Services; (e) upload, post, or otherwise transmit any User Content that with respect to the Site Services: (i) is not relevant to the product, service, person or entity being reviewed; (ii) you do not have a right to transmit under any law or under contractual or fiduciary relationships (by way of example but not limitation, inside information, proprietary and confidential information learned or disclosed as part of employment relationships or under nondisclosure agreements); (iii) contains software viruses or any other computer code, files or programs designed to interrupt, destroy or limit the functionality of any computer software or hardware or telecommunications equipment; or (iv) is unsolicited or unauthorized advertising, promotional materials, "junk mail," "spam," "chain letters," "pyramid schemes," or any other form of solicitation.
User Content does not reflect the views of Backcountry.com, and Backcountry.com does not represent or guarantee the truthfulness, accuracy, completeness, timeliness, integrity, quality or reliability of any User Content, nor does Backcountry.com endorse or support any opinions expressed in any User Content. In no event shall Backcountry.com have or be construed to have any responsibility or liability for or in connection with any User Content, Any gear reviews and/or product ratings submitted on the Site, if displayed, are displayed for entertainment and informational purposes only. Under no circumstances will Backcountry.com be liable in any way for any User Content, including but not limited to, any errors or omissions in any User Content, or for any loss or damage of any kind incurred as a result of the use of any User Content posted, emailed or otherwise transmitted via the Site or Site Services.
If Backcountry.com determines, in our sole and absolute discretion, that you or any User Content you submit violates this Agreement, we reserve the right, at any time, without notice and without limiting any and all other rights Backcountry.com may have under this Agreement, to: (a) refuse to allow you to submit further User Content; (b) remove and delete your User Content; (c) revoke your registration and right to use the User Content Submission Features; and (d) use any technological, legal, operational or other means available to enforce the terms of this Agreement, including, without limitation, blocking specific IP addresses or deactivating your registration, access to the Site and Site Services using your e-mail address, and your user name and password. Without limiting the foregoing, once User Content is submitted to the Site, Backcountry.com may take any or no action with respect to such User Content, including without limitation, deleting, editing, modifying, rejecting, or refusing to post such User Content, but is under no obligation to offer you the opportunity to edit, delete or otherwise modify User Content once it has been submitted. Backcountry.com shall have no duty to attribute authorship of User Content to you and shall not be obligated to enforce any form of attribution by third parties.
If, despite the foregoing assignment and transfer of rights in the User Content, it is determined that you retain moral rights (including the rights of attribution or integrity) in the User Content, you hereby declare that: (a) you do not require that any personally identifying information be used in connection with the User Content or any derivative works of or upgrades or updates thereto; (b) you have no objection to the publication, use, modification, deletion and exploitation of the User Content by Backcountry.com or its licensees, successors or assigns; (c) you forever waive and agree not to claim or assert any entitlement to any and all moral rights of an author in any of the User Content; and (d) you forever release Backcountry.com, and its licensees, successors and assigns from any claims that you could otherwise assert against Backcountry.com by virtue of any such moral rights.
You are prohibited from violating the security of any system or network compromising the Site or the Site Services, including but not limited to the following: (a) unauthorized access to or use of data, systems, or networks, including any attempt to probe, scan or test the vulnerability of the Site or Site Services or to breach security or authentication measures; (b) unauthorized monitoring of data or traffic on the Site or of the Site Services; (c) interference with the Site or Site Services including without limitation, any type of flooding technique or deliberate attempt to overload the system such as denial or service attacks; (d) forging of a message header or any part of a message header; or (e) using manual or electronic means to avoid any use or access limitation placed on this Site or the Site Services. Such violations may result in criminal or civil liability.
Backcountry.com reserves the right to report any activity or persons that Backcountry.com suspects has violated any law or regulation to appropriate law enforcement officials, regulators, or other appropriate third parties (including the disclosure of appropriate subscriber information). Backcountry.com may also cooperate with appropriate law enforcement agencies to assist in the investigation and prosecution of any illegal conduct. Indirect or attempted violations of this Agreement and actual or attempted violations thereof by a third party on behalf of any user shall be considered violations of this Agreement by such user.
BACKCOUNTRY.COM DOES NOT ENDORSE THE USER CONTENT, IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THE USER CONTENT AND SPECIFICALLY DISCLAIMS ANY RESPONSIBILITY OR LIABILITY TO ANY PERSON OR ENTITY (INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, PERSONS WHO MAY USE OR RELY ON SUCH USER CONTENT) FOR ANY LOSS, DAMAGE (WHETHER ACTUAL, CONSEQUENTIAL, PUNITIVE OR OTHERWISE), INJURY, CLAIM, LIABILITY OR OTHER CAUSE OF ANY KIND OR CHARACTER BASED UPON OR RESULTING FROM ANY USER CONTENT PROVIDED THROUGH THIS WEB SITE.
Share your thoughts
I love my helium friends on a functional level. I reach for them before I reach for my BD cams - but I love having both on my rack as they work better in sightly different sizes. My ONE complaint with the cam is a complaint with the company; since the cams are relatively new trigger repair kits aren't really available for this specific set of cams. If you're a gearhead and have experience fixing your own cams, this probably won't be a problem. For a noob like me who wants to make sure it's done correctly, you're going to be SOL. I called the main office of the company in UT and was told to call first one guy and then another, and wound up on the phone with some dude in CA who would fix it if I shipped it to him and paid for labor, with a total cost of $20+ dollars. He was not directly affiliated with WC, and I had to listen to him pitch some membership to something or other for a good 10 min and getting an actual quote from him was near impossible.
I eventually went to the warranty shop of another brand with a 6 pack of beer to bribe the guys to fix the cam for me, and they did an awesome job and I'm grateful to them. This is my one issue with these cams - if you're in the US they're going to be hard to get fixed when the wires go.
TL;DR - When they brake there are no official resources in the US to get your cam working again. WC customer service blows.
Wild Country is awesome, especially since the sizes are basically between the Black Diamond sizes. So when you come upon that crack that is just too small or too big for the BD cam, break out the wild country Heliums! They also feel just as solid and smooth as BD, it's an all around great cam.
I think these cams close the gap on the classic cam range vs. weight debate. Their useful range is very near the BD's, but they feel much lighter and have more overlap.
I can't tell you how many times I've been 3/4 of the way up a long pitch and I need a cam somewhere between a #2 and #3 BD, but damn...I've already placed them down low. Even though the topo called for just a single set to #3, I really need another piece or two for active pro. Well, with Friends on the rack the #2.5 will come in real handy.
If you're starting with a single set of cams, get these. For a second set, you could consider a different brand, but I prefer to have consistency in my rack rather than a hodgepodge of gear collected over time.
Gets me stoked for trad climbing!
Which is better: this or the Diamond C4?
They're comparable in many ways, sometimes it just coes down to personal preference. Here's a handy article: http://www.climbing.com/print/equipment/cams212/index1.html
I personally prefer the c4's.
Are these pretty good largish cams? I've been debating between these and the Black Diamond C4's for my first rack of cams.
I prefer the C4's, the range is awesome and I just prefer the feel. These are great as well though.
Ok guys and gals, here goes. I like the extra length which allows for deeper placements, and I've taken a fall on the silver 1.5 and it held solid. Four stars instead of five because the color scheme could be improved upon in my opinion, and the small red just doesn't feel as solid as the rest for whatever reason. Fact is I still reach for my C4's first, but these have their place and make a great second set in my opinion.
Just curious as to where these cams are manufactured. I would like to build my rack up some more and I'm looking into these. I really don't like the idea of buying cams made in china although it's not a absolute deal breaker.
Wild Country makes most of their products in the UK. I couldn't track down info specifically about the new Helium Friends, but they're responsive to inquiries:
Thanks for the info these really are pretty sweet cams. I find them more and more appealing compared to the BD Camalots.
Just watched a video on the new Helium Friends. They are handmade in the UK.
When will you got the number 4 back in stock?
Stock and inventory questions can tend to languish here. You might try clicking on the "Chat Now" link at the top of the page. That will get you in touch with a BC rep. Best of luck!
I use it combined with the C4 and the complete each others perfectly! Nice first or second set of cams!!!
Really like the new design - lighter, greater range, thumb loop, longer to reach deeper into cracks. Plus, the consistent 13.75 degree camming angle has over 30 years of field-tested results. New cams feel great in your hands and the camming action is smooth. I've tried a bunch of different camming devices over the years, and the new Helium Friends are the best design I've ever seen.
Picked up a set (.5 thru 3.0) a few days ago and have been out using them about four times now. Initial impression is that they don't seem as beefy or formidable as previous friends (or C4's), but are quite light, easy to handle and smooth to place. No falls on them yet, but given their history and construction I have no concerns. The slings seem better than the BDs- smaller and tighter helping keep the 'biner oriented.
My son, at first, didn't particularly like them, opting to rack mostly with C4's. After insisting we give them a try on a few routes, I have noticed he now reaches for a friend the majority of the time. He's a convert and puts them on par with camalots, as do I.
On the down side, the two outside cam retracting wires can get pinched in causing the cams to stick in the retracted position- easy to fix, but a little irritating. Also the colors are a little "out-there." Someone was trying way too hard for a unique color scheme, especially the lavender.
Overall, I am very happy with them and consider them a great adjunct to C4's in the middle sizes. For cams, we now rack C4's in the bigger sizes, a mix of Heliums and C4's in the mid sizes, Heliums and Mastercams for small and micro.
As a final word, I would say that even though C4s have a bit greater range per cam, friends just seem to fit everywhere. Theyre good. Give em a try.
The sizing chart given for the Helium Friends is wrong. It's actually for the old technical friends, and the newer cams have better range and overlap. BC, can you fix this please? Here is the actual sizing chart: http://www.wildcountry.co.uk/products/friends-and-zeros/helium-friends/
Thanks for bringing that to our attention. I have let our content department know and a fix should be put in place ASAP.