Ice Axe And Crampons
An ice axe and crampons are as important for safe glacier travel as a rope and harness. Crampons help you keep your footing if the snow is icy or the glacier slope gets steep. The ice axe does its usual job of aiding with balance and providing a tool for self-belay and self-arrest. It's also what you use to stop a ropemate's tumble into a crevasse, by falling into self-arrest position with the axe.
In order to keep the axe with you in case you're the one who falls in, attach a leash of accessory cord or webbing through the hole in the head of the axe. You can attach the other end of the leash around your wrist with a snug loop or to your waist harness with a locking carabiner. A short wrist leash can be somewhat inconvenient because you need to shift it from one wrist to the other when you change hands on the axe, while a long leash attached to one wrist or to your harness lets you switch hands freely. With the leash clipped to your harness, the axe can provide a quick personal anchor. (Chapter 12 includes a more complete discussion of ice-axe leashes.)
Continue reading here: Prusik Slings And Ascenders
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