Entries by Karen Bockel

New Ski Touring Gear from Black Diamond

Black Diamond Introduces Helio Bindings and Helio Skis Black Diamond’s Helio Collection is gear for alpinists and mountaineers who like to go fast and carry less. And just in time to catch the fresh snow in the mountains, Black Diamond has added lightweight bindings and ski mountaineering skis to their line. Helio Bindings The Helio […]

Hello, Snow!

After last year’s dry and warm winter, I’ve been worrying about this year’s ski season. All fall, these questions looped through my mind: Will it snow before Thanksgiving? Will the Colorado ski areas open on time? Will Chicks be able to run early season avalanche courses? Is climate change ending skiing as we know it? Suddenly, […]

Begin It

Now at last let me see some deeds! Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Summer is gone. Cool nights, blue skies and yellow leaves announce another Rocktober—fall climbing season. I’ve been thinking, “How is this one going to be different?” Have you set a goal? Have you committed to step into the unknown? Will you push a new […]

The Amazon of Climbing Ropes Sterling’s Nano IX

I just got back from a climbing trip to the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains where I spent most of my days climbing at Lover’s Leap, Lake Tahoe. The rock climbing at The Leap is characterized by long cracks up vertical, smooth, granite walls, intersected with a plethora of horizontal dikes. Together the cracks and dikes make the coolest […]

The new Osprey Mutant 38

In the recent months I’ve observed a few of my friends sporting a new Osprey Mutant backpack out in the hills. I could recognize it from afar: trademark Osprey style with a tight package, slim design, a few attachment options, but no frills and no oversized hip belt. Hmm, I thought, that would be a […]

The Petzl Sarken: Quiver of One Crampons

Ask any mountain guide about their crampons, and they’ll have a quiver of models, much like they have a quiver of skis. I was no different. Now, that idea is mostly a thing of the past! Today, I rely on one pair of crampons for almost everything that involves slippery surfaces like ice and snow: […]

Wheels and Wings, My Favorite Things!

  The Osprey Shuttle 130L is my favorite travel companion for overseas trips. The Osprey Shuttle is the perfect wheeled luggage for mountain climbers and backcountry skiers.   A couple weeks ago, I was returning from a sailing and skiing trip to Iceland. Lindsey and I were at the Reykjavik airport frantically packing several pairs […]

A is for Alpine

Alpine Climbing is Awesome! Pre-dawn starts, a bit (or a lot) of suffering, an adventure in a high and wild place. Can I Go?  These three words changed my life forever. Southern Germany, 1992. I was 17. I’d never been to the mountains, or done as much as a hike in the hills. I was […]