User Review: Petzl Vasak (Spirlock)
Price Paid: SGD210
I have the Vasak Spirlock as pictured. The one with heel wire bail and front toe binding. Mine come with the grey soft rubber anti-balling plates. I spent two weeks recently on Chola Shan (6168m)in Sichuan, China. The mountain is heavily crevassed. It is mostly dry summer ice field that I walked on (in August).
The binding system (spirlock) is a bit more tricky to put on than the traditonal heel-lever one. Maybe it was the altitude and cold fingers. I was a bit worry at first that it might not bind well at the heel. But after subjecting them to two weeks of glacial travel and some ice climbing I am convinced. It does what it promised to do (general mountaineering) well.
The longest section of steep alpine ice that I did is a 50m plus of 70 degree ice wall. And I finished the climb without any issue. That speaks well for the crampons and the rather odd binding system (spirlock).
The only issue I have is that the soft rubber anti-balling plates don't seem to last. I noticed some cracks on them. I guess it's due to the heavy use on rough ice surface and the moraine.