Arc'teryx S220 LT
www.arcteryx.com | $99 | 4 1/2 Stars
With the new lighter, sleeker and sexier S220 LT harness, Arc’Teryx has tweaked and improved upon many of the features of the popular ice, sport and alpine harness the S240.
When the S240 came out in 2009, I was impressed by its relative weightlessness and surprising back support, considering it lacked the padding I’m accustomed to seeing in most harnesses. The latter feature owes to Arc’Teryx’s Warp Strength Technology, which takes the “warp,” or longitudinal, fibers about the swami webbing and fans them out, hammock-style, providing the comfort of a wide belt but without the weight. My complaint regarding the S240 was its leg loops, which made my legs go numb any time I had to hang for a long time.
The new S220 LT uses the same WST in the waist but the leg loops have been redesigned using a stiffer mesh fabric, shaped to be wider and more conical. I’ve found them comfortable and my legs no longer go numb. While the leg loops have been greatly improved, I did have a problem with the sizing: the loops were too large for me. In general, I prefer non-adjustable leg loops, but I wish I could mix and match leg loop/swami sizes for a tailored fit. I would even pay extra for it!
The S220 LT is 220 grams (7.75 ounces), 20 grams lighter than the S240. Of course I don’t notice 20 grams, but thanks to an included mesh pouch the S220 LT packs down to about the size of a notebook. There is always a nook in my overflowing crag pack where I can fit this rig, making it the most compact harness I’ve tested.
Two polyurethane gear loops rack carabiners forward, and are easy to clip. The waist webbing doubles back through an aluminum buckle and is easy to cinch down. You can tuck the tail of the webbing under the left gear loop and put it through an easy-to-thread loop.
- WST eliminates need for padding, and gives great support.
- Improved leg loops are conical, stiffer and more supportive than the previous model.
- Two gear loops rack gear forward.
- Small: waist 28.5-31.5 in., leg 20.5-22.5 in.
- Medium: waist 31-34.5 in., leg 22-24 in.
- Large: waist 34-38 in., leg 23.5-26 in.
- XL: waist 37.5-42 in., leg 25-28 in.