The Alpinist Mountain Standards reviews apply Alpinist's tradition of excellence and authenticity to gear reviews by providing unbiased, candid feedback and anecdotal commentary to equipment tested (hard) in the field. Our panel is comprised of climbers who use the gear every day as part of their work and play. Only the gear they would actually buy themselves, at retail price, qualifies for the Alpinist Mountain Standards award. The five-star rating system is as follows:
One Star = Piece of junk.
Two Stars = Has one or more significant flaws, with some redeeming qualities.
Three Stars = Average. This solid piece of gear is middle-of-the-road on the current market.
Four Stars = Better than most comparable gear on the market. It has one or two drawbacks, but still 90% positive.
Five Stars = Is there such thing as perfection? An Alpinist Mountain Standards award-winner.
The rest of the MS Team
Black Diamond C4 Camalots
Posted on: July 30, 2005
When Craig Luebben assigned Curt Love and me Cloud Tower for the last day of our AMGA Rock Guide Exam, we were psyched. Our first question was, "Can we borrow your rack of new C4s?" The weight difference, at 20-percent less, was very noticeable. While the drilled-out camming units themselves reduce weight, they also allow better overall balance. The expanded range per unit enables Black Diamond to remove one size, as well as to increase the size of the largest (number six) unit. Thus paring down our rack, we had no doubt that we could send the route. These will be the first pieces that go on my rack from now on. Same bomber Black Diamond engineering that I trust my life to, but much easier to place with the improved thumb grip and the stem loop that I can clip in short when necessary.