A basic, no frills crampon from Czech company Singing Rock, the Fakir (947g) is solidly made and versatile. Designed for everything from glacier travel to classic couloirs, this crampon fitted my tramping boots well and has a wide sole platform – giving good stability. The 12-points are razor sharp and are the longest of all the crampons in this review, making them ideal for soft snow and penetration through the variable snow conditions found in New Zealand, but not so good for very hard ice.
Two pairs of sub-points on the heel and forefoot give extra purchase, but also make the crampon slightly more prone to balling up. Robust anti-balling plates come with the crampons, but need to be self-installed. This took only a few minutes with the use of a Phillips screwdriver.
The binding system utilises plastic toe and heel bails and a strap fastened with a nicely designed stainless steel fitting – easy to use with gloves on. The crampon is adjustable without tools, but I found the sprung stainless steel adjuster difficult to pull up. It needs a little more material for the fingers to grip. For most users this should only be an occasional adjustment.
The Fakir’s frame is powder-coated chrome molybdenum. The coating was starting to chip off after one use (to be expected) and these, as with most other crampons, will benefit from a light coating of WD-40 to prevent corrosion if being stored for a long period of time.