, $166, 2 pounds 7 ounces
Summary: Grivel has gotten the semi-rigid design just right: thanks in large part to the horizontal framing, the G14 is very clean — and less prone to balling (although anti-bots are available and 50% cheaper if purchased with the
). The adjustable front points (two positions) penetrate hard ice remarkably well, and the offset monopoint needles and hooks thin ice and delicate mixed ground with equal aplomb. The frame adjusts manually (without tools) and the entire unit collapses down nicely for transport. There’s no heel spike.
We tested the Crampomatic binding, Grivel’s step-in offering, which includes their unique curlycue toe bale (which worked well on a variety of welts), plus a bomber heel lever, and the added security of the stainless toe strap that threads with the ankle strap. The company also offers the G14 with their “Newmatic” binding (not reviewed), which features a plastic toe
for shallow welts and overboots.
To top it all off, Grivel has kept the price reasonable — even low — compared to the other semi-rigid designs. With their history of crampon development and innovation, we expect a lot from Grivel (their country is shaped like a boot, for cryin’ out loud), and the G14 does not disappoint.
Pros: Clean design. Monopoint conversion parts and hardware included. Horizontal frame resists balling.
Overall grade: A
Grivel North America: (801) 463-7996, www.grivelnorthamerica.com