- High tensile 6061-T6 aluminium.
- Optional stainless steel driving caps to reduce damage from hammering (recommended).
- Optional 4mm galvanised steel cable with attachment eye die-pressed swage for reliable swage strength.
Aspiring originated the mid-clip snowstake in the 1980s, following testing carried out in conjunction with the Federated Mountain Clubs. Aspiring Snowstakes comply with the current recommendations for snow anchors developed by Don Bogie in collaboration with NZGA, NZMSC and LandSAR.
It is important to read Don’s report to understand how to construct a reliable snow anchor in various snow conditions.
- The three key findings from the report are:
- Increase the snow strength by compaction.
- Get anchors deep.
- Pull from the middle.
- If using V section stakes, have the point of the V to load (usually downhill) for top clips and open part of the V to load for mid clips. These configurations maximise the strength of the aluminium.
- Field testing found that the strongest results were a mid-clip snowstake with the open side of the V facing down slope in soft snow. Loading the anchor at the centre eliminates leverage, and removes the torquing effect at the top of the anchor.
- To place a top-clip anchor to maximize its holding power in strong snow lean stakes back by no more than 10 degrees, to maximise the size of the snow stress cone.
- Leaning mid-clip stakes back 45 degrees from perpendicular to the snow surface will make them dive and put more snow in front of the anchor, but be aware that the angle could flatten out if it hits a hard layer, which would weaken the anchor.
- Treat your snow anchor as a valuable piece of protective equipment.
- Retire your snow anchor if it is bashed up.