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Climbing Harnesses

Arc’teryx 350a

Field test results of one of the lightest climbing harnesses, by Arc'teryx.

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X350a_BlackBird.jpg Arc’tery X350a

★★★★ 12 ounces

www.arcteryx.com

Though touted as the harness for mixed climbing, the X350 is an excellent all-arounder once you get past the sticker shock. The fully adjustable leg loops are simple to adjust and, you can (with difficulty) unthread the buckles, drop the leg loops, and change your drawers while staying tied to the swami.

Four, average-size gear loops hold about six biners each and two slots accept plastic “ice clippers” for racking screws. The gear loops are well positioned and supposedly reversible for folks who prefer their gear to slide rearward rather than forward. However, reversing the loops is tricky, and the polyurethane coverings can work themselves loose and fall off.

I used the X350a in wet, freezing conditions under heavy clothing, then in warm temps while dogging around in light clothing. It worked great through the range, absorbing no noticeable moisture and remaining comfortable while I dangled for hours at a stretch.