15. Sharpening Crampons and Ice Tools

In this video we discuss the importance of sharpening crampons and ice tools and crampons.


  • All points of the crampons should be reasonably sharp, not only the front point(s).
  • Frequency and type of use will determine how often they need to be sharpened. If you are doing a lot of mixed climbing (moving over rock) they will need to be sharpened more frequently
  • Look for round edges as a sure tell sign that sharpening is needed—or overdue.

Ice Tool:

  • This will need to be sharpened more frequently as the ice tool is likely to get swung into rock and get knicked or burred.
  • We recommend sharpening the pick before every climb to ensure easy penetration and minimal shattering of ice.
  • Depending on the frequency of dry tooling or mixed climbing, the other ridges on the pick may need sharpening as well.

As with all climbing gear, remember to check the condition of your gear often and store it in a safe, dry place between uses.

We hope you found this video helpful. Feel free to comment below with questions or thoughts!


Please remember, climbing is inherently dangerous. Climb at your own risk.