We’ve read the reviews on the web for the Black Diamond Carbon Whippet Ski Pole and summarize the results below:
PeakScore: 94 (out of 100)
User Rating: 4.8 stars
Expert Rating 4.5 stars
Pros & Cons
Reasons to buy:
- Removing the axe is super easy.
- Perfect piece of gear for anyone entering self-arrest terrain.
- This is great for spring skiing when the snow can be firm and a fall can be dangerous.
- Once the whippet is attached to the pole, there is zero play. It locks in tight.
- I have yet to find a downside.
- Since the axe is removable, it is a very versatile piece of gear.
- This is a must have piece of gear that I can’t ski without.
- Takes less than 30 seconds to attach or remove the axe.
- The axe feels solid and is light.
- It’s nice to have the removable axe in my pack as an insurance policy.
- Essential when encountering firm snow.
- Easy for splitboarders to stow on the way down.
Reasons NOT to buy:
- The pole collapses at two places instead of three, making it a little longer to store. However, this probably makes it stronger.
- Pole is sold individually, so having to buy two is expensive.
- BEWARE the rivets that hold the axe together release after a couple years and may cause your entire axe to disintegrate into multiple pieces.
- Black Diamond has not publicly recognized the risk of the axe falling apart due to rivet failure. This product is unsafe and should be recalled.
- The socket filler (where the axe attaches) can be hard to remove.
- The teeth on the pick are not really going to help you.
- A whippet is no substitute for an ice axe in extreme conditions.
The Black Diamond Carbon Whippet Ski Pole is an invaluable tool for ski and splitboard touring in steep terrain with firm snow. The whippet allows for the axe to be easily removed and re-attached in the field, providing safety, security and flexibility. However, due to a likelihood of catastrophic rivet failure, buy this product at your own risk.
Where to Buy:
Expert rankings were reviewed on wild snow, backpacker, mtnweekly