Gear Guide 2012: Trango Smooth Quickdraws Carabiner

Big and beefy carabiners

Testers fought over the Trango Smooth Quickdraws, which pair a standard straight keylock (not wire) gate on the bolt end with a bent gate on the rope end. Why the fracas? “They’re big and beefy,” says one devotee. “This inspires confidence whether you’re a newer climber learning to lead or a seasoned redpointer working on a pet project, both of whom are almost guaranteed to grab the draw to avoid taking a long fall.”

Testers also praised the smooth, snag-free clipping action. “It takes minimal pressure from the bolt hanger to the carabiner’s gate to clip the draw,” says one tester after an outing at Colorado’s classic Shelf Road area. “This is fantastic when your body is fully extended and your brain has just one thought: don’t fall, don’t fall.” Bonus: With à la carte ordering, you can choose wire gates to save weight. $70 (as tested, for five); 3.5 oz. (each); trango.com