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Carabiners and Quickdraws

Types of Carabiners and Quickdraws

photo of a locking carabiner

Locking Carabiners

photo of a non-locking carabiner

Non-Locking Carabiners

photo of a quickdraw


Top Picks

How we choose: The best carabiners and quickdraws highlighted here were selected based on 47 reviews of 41 products. Our top picks are those that are readily-available in the United States and have received the highest overall ratings from reviewers.

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If you've used a carabiner/quickdraw that you think should be listed here, please share your experience.

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Top Locking Carabiner

DMM Belay Master 2

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

Excellent product, vey well designed and made. it's perfect for the job (belaying/rappelling carabiner).

Reasons to Buy

  • Large enough for its purpose
  • Folding catch indicates proper closure
  • Prevents cross loadings
  • Not made in China!

Reasons to Avoid

  • Can't think of any

Bought the Master 2 exclusively for my tube-type belay device and love it. I've used it now for a few weeks and plan to get a second one soon (backup in case of loss or theft). The "pivoting catch" assures me that my 'biner is locked properly and will not cross load whether belaying or rappelling. It's foolproof because of that folding catch and thus provides visual peace-of-mind for me and the climber—I can lock it and forget about it. I've read elsewhere that the folding catch is a PITA, but I don't see that at all.

Read more: DMM Belay Master 2 review (1)

Top Non-Locking Carabiner

Black Diamond Oz

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

The Oz carabiner is a small carabiner that can be used in sport, trad, and alpine climbing. It's lightweight but has a decent gate opening making it more functional than other small carabiners.

Reasons to Buy

  • Good clipping action
  • Lightweight - 22g
  • Keylock (new model)
  • Multiple colors

Review The Oz carabiner is a good all-around biner. It’s not the lightest out there nor does it have the largest gate opening (22mm) but it works well and I’ve always found Black Diamond wire gates easy to clip. The new Oz has a wire hood design making it keylock like the Petzl Ange S but is the cheaper of the two. It also comes in multiple colors to match the Black Diamond Cams. Small Carabiner Overview There are a handful of small, full strength carabiners on the market from 19 grams to 28 grams.

Read more: Black Diamond Oz review (1)

Locking Carabiner

Petzl William Ball-Lock

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

This carabiner, the Petzl William Ball-lock is the metal sleeve successor to the plastic-sleeved ball-lock. This is my primary locking carabiner, which I use with belay devices, with munters (it is an HMS, designed to take munters readily, even on double ropes), and many other situations. The action is quick and easy with one hand - just push the ball on the sleeve and twist, then release and it locks automatically (do a squeeze check to be sure, of course, as with all lockers). I did find in Antarctica that in the cold (-30 and below), it was sometimes a bit sluggish.

Read more: Petzl William Ball-Lock review (1)

Locking Carabiner

Petzl Delta

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

The Petzl Delta Link provides a 25kN working load at a mere 5.29 oz. It serves for multiple connection points in a Frog Ascending System. Lightweight, tough, and reliable.

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • Strong
  • Fits in pocket

Reasons to Avoid

  • Narrow opening
  • Difficult to thread

I use these for a number of applications—mostly climbing. They are an essential part of of a Frog Ascending system for rope climbing. One is used as the connection point between my Petzl Ascension ascender and the footloop. The other is used to attach my chest ascender (Petzl Croll) to the chest harness. With the triangular shape, there is no risk of crossloading. So you maintain the full working strength of the link at all time. I own several of these, and I find some of them screw open easily, while others are really frustrating. I actually carry a small crescent wrench on my gear loop in case I find myself in a bind. Other applications include using it to hang my hammock and store heavy gear in the rafters of my garage.

Read more: Petzl Delta review (1)

Locking Carabiner

Edelrid Pure Slider

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

It's an easy to use and lightweight autolocker, perfect for a more secure alpine sling or to use in anchoring.

Reasons to Buy

  • Easy to use and open with one hand
  • Not as bulky as most other auto lockers
  • Super lightweight compared to other autolockers

Reasons to Avoid

  • Sometimes the slider sticks a little while closing
  • Could potentially be opening by rubbing against a rock or rope
  • Expensive

I bought four of these mainly to use for anchoring and having secure carabiners for whatever I need them for. I can easily open them with one hand by putting the spine in my palm, and using my middle finger to push the slider down and open the gate. There could potentially be a scenario where a rope or rock can do this as well, but you'd have to pretty much purposefully place it in a situation where that could happen. Opening it on a rope is potentially a plus if it's really cold out and you have gloves on, you can just slide and clip.

Read more: Edelrid Pure Slider review (1)

Non-Locking Carabiner

Black Diamond Neutrino

user rating: 5 of 5 (1 review)

Lightweight. Strong. Reliable. What else do you need?

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight
  • Strong
  • Easy to use

This is a great little product. I don't know if there are lighter full-size, full strength carabiners out there, but these are fantastic. Obviously the way you use the carabiner is going to change your opinion of them, but for hammock camping and general campsite use, they're fantastic. The biggest drawing point is the weight.  I think if my 30 L bag were filled with these, I wouldn't notice.  And so, they double as a means to hang stuff off your pack as you hike without much added weight.

Read more: Black Diamond Neutrino review (1)

Non-Locking Carabiner

DMM Revolver

user rating: 4.5 of 5 (1 review)

The Revolver deserves to be a lot more popular. Its ostensible exorbitant price is misleading as the 'biner will almost certainly pay for itself in extended rope life if you do much toproping and/or lowering.What it is: A carabiner with a rolling bearing in the basket. This bearing greatly reduces biner/rope friction.Advantageous uses:Top roping and lowering. I haven't seen any data on this issue, but my gut feeling is that regular use of the Revolver in this capacity would at least double the life of a rope which is subjected to a lot of this one-pitch action.Clip in point for directional pieces.

Read more: DMM Revolver review (1)

Non-Locking Carabiner

CAMP Photon Wire Straight Gate

user rating: 4 of 5 (1 review)

The Camp Photon wire gate carabiner is the lightest full size carabiner in the world and has an extremely large gate opening for easy clipping.

Reasons to Buy

  • Lightweight - 29g
  • Large gate opening - 28/29mm
  • Available in straight and bent gates
  • Straight gate comes in multiple colors

Review The Camp Photon carabiner is amazingly light weighing in at 29 grams. It also has a one of the largest gate openings at 28mm for the straight gate and 29mm for the bent gate. I currently have 12 Photon Wire Bent Gate carabiners on the rope end of my quickdraws and they are noticeably lighter than the hotwires I replaced while still being easy to clip. There have been reports of the Photons having sticky gates but I haven’t had any issues after year and a half of use.  Large Carabiner Overview Full size carabiners have also come down in weight in the last few years.

Read more: CAMP Photon Wire Straight Gate review (1)

Locking Carabiner

Metolius Gatekeeper Locking Carabiner

user rating: 3.5 of 5 (1 review)

Does well at keeping the carabiner from rotation while belaying. The spin lock is OK but doesn't turn as smoothly as others. The paint on the carabiner wears off almost immediately, and grooves from the rope appear faster than expected.

Reasons to Buy

  • Won't rotate while belaying
  • Easier to get set up than other gatekeeper carabiners

Reasons to Avoid

  • Paint wears off immediately
  • Grooves get worn in faster than expected
  • Spin lock not as smooth as others

This is a nice design for preventing your carabiner from rotating while belaying. It attaches to the harness more easily than the other gatelock style carabiners I've tried. However, the green paint wears off from the rope almost immediately. Mine has no paint left where the ropes run after two days of use. Additionally, grooves wear into the carabiner from the rope faster than expected. I had to stop using this carabiner after two years of once or twice a week use due to the grooves from the rope getting deep enough that I was concerned about their edges against the rope and about the effect on the strength of the carabiner.

Read more: Metolius Gatekeeper Locking Carabiner review (1)

More Carabiners and Quickdraws

Trailspace reviewers have shared 47 reviews of 41 different carabiners and quickdraws. Narrow your search and view more specific carabiner/quickdraw recommendations in these categories:

Locking Carabiners

Non-Locking Carabiners


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