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, $180, 2 pounds 7 ounces
Summary: A new semi-rigid design, the C14 delivers on many a competitor’s unfulfilled promise: the relatively lightweight frame has the lowest profile of any
we looked at, delivering a less imposing, unencumbered feel, particularly on mixed ground. The adjustable (two positions) front points penetrated hard ice as well as any of the other semi-rigid models, and the crampon package includes everything needed for offset monopoint conversion. The frame size adjusts easily without tools, collapses down super small for packing, and despite the vertical rails (on the toe piece), balling is limited by integrated anti-balling plates. These anti-bots do have a downside, however, as moisture and grit are easily trapped under the edges, especially around the heel-assembly frame. At the end of each day, we had to pry them loose in order to dry things out. The “Fast” lever lock binding is a clean and solid design, clamping firmly into all types
of welts — plus, the ankle strap threads the toe bail for added security. A second “Mixed” binding (not reviewed) is also available.
Pros: Low profile. Offset monopoint conversion hardware included. Integrated anti-bots.
Cons: Anti-balling plates trap moisture and grit.
Overall grade: A-
Cassin/Climb Axe: (800) 895-0048, www.cassin.it