If you like a stiff and aggressive shoe that offers supreme advantages for edging and toeing in pockets, then this is the shoe for you.
Sometimes you have to try new gear that’s really good to realize that your old stuff just isn’t as effective as you thought. This was my experience when trying out the new Black Diamond LiveWire Quickdraws. Though not light, BD’s deluxe sport rig offers big and beefy ‘biners with features that enable quick and efficient clipping. Whether pushing tricky sport clips or extending ice and mixed protection with a gloved hand, this quickdraw truly makes the job easier.
There seems to be quite a bit more brand-loyalty in the realm of ice climbing gear than in other arenas of equipment purchase. But is this partisanship and almost red state-blue state vehemence really necessary, or can brands play together nicely?
I also fall fate to being one of the most cold-challenged alpine guides in the Canadian Rockies, so when given the opportunity to test the MontBell Permafrost Down Parka I couldn’t really refuse!