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
C.A.M.P. USA XLC390 Crampons
Posted on: July 26, 2005
The C.A.M.P. USA XLC 390 is the lightest semi-rigid twelve-point crampon in the world. CAMP achieves this featherweight construction by using 7075 aluminum alloy. The XLC 390 automatic binding (also available in new-matic and strap-on styles), designed for alpinism and ski touring, has been valuable to me this spring and early summer. I have used these crampons to compete in the grueling Pierra Menta, a four-day ski-mountaineering competition held in France, as well as to make numerous spring ski descents and summer climbs high in the Alps and Tetons. I have front-pointed alpine ice and climbed sections of rock; both with great results. If you are looking for a light, durable crampon, the XLC 390 is for you.