The OutDoor Show in Germany last month was awash with innovative new climbing protection. In addition to the Magnetron Carabiners from Black Diamond and lighter climbing hardware from Petzl, new gear was on display from Italy's Kong and Climbing Technology, as well as California's Mad Rock.
Crack climbers will salivate at the sight of the new Gipsy frictional anchor system (pictured above) from Kong. An alternative to traditional cams, yet keeping the same weight and dimensions, the Gipsy is meant to be used in wider cracks and for offwidth protection.
A special button enables you to lock open the frictional anchor device for easy insertion into the crack. The Kong Gipsy comes in three sizes, 4-6, that cover a wide crack size range from 52 mm to 205 mm.
As a follow up to their popular Click Up belay device, Climbing Technology has released a mountaineering or alpine specific belay device, the aptly named Alpine Up. A versatile device for both belay and rappel, the Alpine Up works with half, twin, and single ropes.
The Alpine Up allows you to belay the leader in two modes- either self locking for added security or the traditional manual locking style such as with your Reverso or ATC. This particular design means that for rappelling, the device is also self locking. You should not forgo the traditional prussik or fireman's belay backup of course but it adds an extra level of security.
The Alpine Up belay device enables the leader to belay one or 2 seconds simultaneously. If either of the seconds should fall, the self locking device will arrest their fall independently. The device also makes lowering the second after a fall extremely simple, without having to jerry rig up some complicated release system.
We have all been there before, on the sharp end of the rope, a ton of feet between you and your last piece, starting to get pumped, and struggling to clip the darn rope. The new Mad Rock Trigger Wire will ease your suffering with a specialized clamp or trigger that holds the gate open until you apply the slightest pressure, making it quick and easy to clip.
The Mad Rock Trigger Wire carabiner retails for $9.95 and is also available as part of a quickdraw.