The best ice tools, reviewed and curated by the Trailspace community. The latest review was added on July 2, 2022. Stores' prices and availability are updated daily.
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Recent Ice Tool Reviews
If you are a technical climber, this is the only tool you need. At home on rock, ice, mixed, and on sketchy approaches. I have climbed on every iteration of the Nomics. I learned on gen 1, bought gen 2 and used it for 2 seasons leading up to wi5. I had no complaints, the tools took me places I couldn’t have dreamed of before my introduction to the sport. Then I tried my friend’s 3rd gen tools. I didn’t think such improvement was possible from perfection. Durability issues were fixed in the… Full review
Great ice tool for waterfall ice and mixed climbing! Has taken me from Rjukan to the Alps and back again! Great ice tool! I bought mine used though a friend (so I do not own the newest generation). It's been perfect for me, climbing WI 3-5 and mixed alpine routes. I can't think of much more to wish for in an ice tool. I was so lucky as to get different blades with the tool, so one for training, one for mixed, one for alpine, and one for water ice. Great swing, even without weights. The only thing… Full review
Ice climbing dream. For pure WI these are my favorite ice tool to date. The slim pick usually is a one swing wonder, which makes steep climbs less tiring. With my Nomics I feel like I have to battle-axing in to the ice, but not the X-dream even with the "mixed" pick. The handle has two positions ice and Mixed, I keep mine on the ice setting. The difference is that the mixed sets the handle angle a bit more aggressive. My only gripe is the little adjustable plastic grip rest on the upper shaft,… Full review
I've used these axes in mixed conditions and on ice and found they perform very differently. On ice they are the perfect level of aggressive and terrific for beginners as the price makes the sport a bit more accessible, and they are simple to use. Though a bit heavy, they have a good swing, and are very comfortable to hold. Grip tape on the upper handle is essential, but easily added. The picks are very durable, and can take a great deal of abuse. On mixed and rock these perform rather poorly. The… Full review
This is going to be a bit of a comparison between the Petzl Nomic and the Fusion. I have been using both now for the last three years, these are my conclusions. For pure steep ice I prefer the Nomic. It swings less like a battle ax (Fusion being the battle ax) and the pick sticks more securely but yet is easy to remove. BD has some catching up on with their pick tech. The Fusion alway seem to take more effort to get a solid stick, and when it's in it takes a bit to get the pick dislodged. For mixed… Full review
I've bought my new Cassin X-Alp 6 mounts ago and they are great. I've tried them on WI 4-5 even on WI 6 and they were fabulous. I would put them on the same line with Petzl Quarks, just find the handle with finger guard and they would be just perfect for any type of climbing. Previously i had DMM Fly, Simond Naja, also used Quark and Nomic... but i can't compare it with X-Alp. For the money they give the most universal of these ice axes and i just love them a because of that. Although their usage… Full review
My Nomic is a Fusion. When leashless became the new game and all the companies started pouring out new axes to go outside and overhang on mixed routes, and when we all started needing more clearance from our ice axes Black Diamond invented the Fusion. For 5 years now (give or take) they taken me everywhere. Perfect? Untrue. Best tool ever made for dry tooling? Yes, after a few tweaks. I started by adding micro hammer heads, always useful for putting in the "once in a while" pitons. And hockey… Full review
I have tried a variety of tools through the years. My 4 favorites, you will see a review on each. The Simond Chacal with interchangeable tips (not uncommon these days) was one of the leaders of time gone by. Quality and durability equals my other three favorites too. Nice feel, relatively easy (with the right tools) to change the tips. Easier to do at the top or start of a climb but possibly mid climb too. Strongly recommend taking a Craftsman Combination Wrench and grind the open end off then… Full review
I'll preface the five-star rating by saying that I have never owned an off-the-shelf ice tool that performed this well without any modifications. I've owned or used most of the new generation leashless tools (Petzl Ergo, BD Fusion, Simond Scud/Coyote, Grivel Monster/X-Monster) and none have come close to the overall high performance of the Nomic. Most of the tools listed above specialize in either ice climbing or mixed climbing, but the Nomic performs at the highest level for both ice and rock. Full review