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Self-Arrest Skills Save Lives on Snow-Covered Slopes

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Grasp Axe With Pick Facing Backwards
Self-Arrest Skills Save Lives on Snow-Covered Slopes

A hiker holds an ice axe with the thumb under the adze and pick facing backwards.

Photo credit Franck Bocamy © Traci J. Macnamara.

First, hold the axe in your uphill hand with the pick facing backwards while you walk.

Grasp the axe with your thumb on the inside, under the adze, and wrap your palm and other fingers over the pick near the shaft.

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