Because I prefer not to gash my face open during self-arrest, I've been looking for some kind of adze cover for my BD Raven Pro ice axe. I'd like something that securely covers the adze blade but that leaves the pick uncovered. That way I can climb with the axe and not worry about getting cut by the adze if I take a tumble.
I bought one of these things:
But the adze cover is really loose and it relies on the pick cover to stay on the axe. I cut mine in half and use the pick cover to protect my stuff from the pick when I'm not climbing. I'd like the same thing for the adze.
Any ideas? If you can't think of anything, a lame adze pun will suffice.
If you don't have any (many) plans on using the adze you could cut it off, or at least dull it. I've found the adze a useful tool for self arrest admittedly in more mountaineering type situations.
Could also do what many a mixed climber has done and duct tape tennis balls to the adze.
But honestly if you do take a tumble in a place where an axe is really necessary, one of the least important things will be whether you cut your face. I've taken a number of falls while ice climbing and been okay while falling with two axes, ice screws, and ice pitons (essentially an axe head on spectra swinging at your waist). The adze for self arrest will generally not be a problem, I wouldn't bother doing anything with it. Hope that helps a bit.
Joined: Sat Feb 04, 2006 8:59 am Posts: 550 Location: Stowe, VT
I agree with the poster above, but if I wanted to cover my adze, I'd take something like in your photo, and attach it to a hook or baby carabiner or something to clip into the handle where it meets the pick.adze. I think it's narrow there. so you can use a really small carabiner to hold it on, and it shouldn't be possible for it to slide around.
Thanks for the suggestions. I don't want to cut or dull the adze, because it is usefull for chopping steps, digging trenches for anchors, etc. However, for the most part I don't need use the adze when I'm climbing with the axe in cane position, which is 99% of what I use the axe for. And I'd prefer to have the adze blade covered during those times. I don't see the advantage of having an uncovered adze blade pointed in the direction of my face/shoulder/chest during a self arrest.
So I was wondering if anyone had any clever ideas for a cover. I've used duct tape before, but that made it hard to get at the adze when I needed it. I think I'm going to try something like Shep's idea and see what I can do with a small carabiner or something. Maybe I just have to get a little rubber block somewhere and try to create something from scratch.
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2006 6:12 am Posts: 41 Location: East Coast
Do you really need to take the duct tape off to use the adze? I would think that after one or two good swings into ice the adze would cut its way through the tape. If you need to re-cover it, just put another piece of tape back over the exposed edge.