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The lightest crampon in Petzl’s range is designed for use on ski and snowboard boots and snow travel. It also packs down to half the size of most crampons. Is this the perfect ski touring crampon?

Lightweight, packable, easily adjusted and effective. More or less a no-brainer.
The only negative we could come up with is that the price may put some people off, given this is a product to use only occasionally.

Weight: 330 grams

Buy Petzl Leopard LLF Crampons: £116 from 

Petzl Leopard LLF Crampon Review: TL;DR Review

This is a super-niche product even by backcountry skiing standards. But grams are important, and so is pack space, so the Petzl Leopard Crampon could be a ski tourer’s essential.

Petzl Leopard LLF Crampon Review: Intro

When it comes to climbing hardwear, you need to have faith in the manufacturer, and that kind of trust comes mostly from names that have been synonymous with mountains and safety for decades. Petzl is one of the most recognizable and dependable names in the game.


Who Are The Petzl Leopard Crampons Aimed at?

The Petzl Leopard LLF model is aimed squarely at ski touring, split boarding and “snow travel” (the latter is Petzl’s ambiguous term...). That’s because the LLF (Leverlock FIL) is an attachment system requiring welts both front and back of your boots. Most hiking boots won’t have these, and even B2 boots often only have a rear welt – you’re talking full-fat mountain boots at a minimum. 

This is where the crampons begin to seem niche and limited. Surely if you can only use these with ski boots then it’s difficult to justify the expense? But Petzl have headed off this objection by building-in an ingenious level of versatility with the AlpenAdapt system which allows you to swap out the toe and heel pieces as well as the attachment system. If you want to use them with B2 boots you can buy a toe piece with the Flexlock binding system. If you want more aggressive front points, you can swap the entire front piece for the Irvis model.

Anyone who already owns a pair of crampons – anything that works for winter walking or entry level ice climbing or mountaineering – would probably find it difficult to justify buying the Leopard just for ski touring. This AlpenAdapt flexibility does make the whole package a little more attractive.

On the other hand, anyone who has regularly packed a pair of (850 gram) Grivel G10s for example, and carried them up hundreds of metres of ascent, and then returned them home unused, will genuinely see the appeal of a 330 gram product that packs as small as your harscheisen.

Petzl Leopard LLF Crampon Review: Fit and Features

The real standout feature of the Petzl Leopard is the use of a humble piece of string (aka a “high-modulus polyethylene CORD-TEC linking system”) to hold the toe and heel pieces together, as well as to adjust the fit. This is what allows the crampon to be folded “in half” to minimise pack space, but it does of course mean that boots with too much flexibility in the sole will not be compatible, as the string needs to maintain tension.


Petzl Leopard LLF Crampon Review: Verdict

We’ve used the Petzl Leopard crampons on a couple of Norwegian summits in well-trodden and wind scoured snow as well as on an elongated ridge traverse in the deep snow of early spring in the Alps – including on some very steep and very solid consolidated snow. The front points were aggressive enough to work on the steep terrain, minimal enough not to trip over on the flat, and although it took a little getting used to, faith in the CORD-TEC link was rewarded. They didn’t pop off. That said, it takes some brute force to get a snug-fit in the first instance. One thing that was definitely missing on the deeper days were anti-balling plates, but these too are available as part of the modular design.

If you already own crampons that work, then these are of course a luxury. But they are perfectly designed for the job, and as close to weightless as you can expect a pair of crampons to be. Gram counters should not hesitate.

Buy Petzl Leopard LLF Crampons: £116 from 

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