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
Posted on: August 1, 2005
The Petzl Grigri self-braking belay/descender device is a true industry standard. What can I say about the Grigri that has not been said over the years? Sure, some people will tell you that the Grigri does not give a dynamic belay and therefore increases forces on gear placements, blah, blah,...these are the ones still using figure-eights. However, proper use should negate this issue. I have used the Grigri to climb sport routes, long free routes and one-day ascents of El Cap; and each time, the Grigri has facilitated our efforts. Thanks to its durability, ease of use and reliability, not to mention the diagram (for monkeys like myself), it has become for me, the most trusted belay device on the market.