Tiso Tested Rating:

Weight: 550g

Materials: Modular Steel

Best suited for: Mountaineering, Climbing, Ice Climbing

Best Feature: Modular Design

Location: Chamonix, France

Weather: Snow


  • Interchangeable Ice Pick
  • Trigrest Hand Rest
  • Technical Balance

Location Reviewed: Chamonix, France

Tristan Harper tests the Petzl Charlet Quark Ice Axe

Looking ahead to your next winter climbing adventure at the end of the year? Get prepared with the new Petzl Charlet Quark Ice Axe.

The Overview

Our Supported by Tiso affiliate, Tristan, was heading to Chamonix in the French Alps to climb in some of the most exciting places in Europe. On this week in the Alps he was going to be Ice Climbing between France & part of the Italian Alps in Cogne. He would be doing a variety of climbing while he was away and wanted to make sure that he had the equipment to tackle, Alpine Ice, Water Ice & Mixed climbing conditions. These great and varied conditions gave him the perfect opportunity to test out the new Petzl Charlet Quark Ice Axe and Hammer. The weeks weather was a great mix of heavy snow fall, rain, wind and sunny spells giving Tristan all sorts of types of ice to work with.

Petzl's roots lie in the desire of its founders to serve one passion: exploration. Since its beginnings in caving, the company’s mission has remained constant: to offer practical solutions that allow people to progress. Today that pioneering spirit, passion for exploration and ethic have not changed. More than forty years later, Petzl continues to invent products and provide solutions that allow sports enthusiasts and professionals to access some of the most inaccessible places, both day and night.

The Features

What l really enjoyed about the Petzl Quark is how versatile it is working with different types of ice, both soft & hard. Giving me the option of getting great penetration and hold in all types of ice. Climbing a 2000-meter peak in Cogne, using the Petzl Ice Axe gave me great confidence because of how well it managed with long pitched routes in different types of ice and snow. Its extremely practical in Snow with the options of removing accessories making the axe extremely light. The swinging motion is smooth & the curved shaft offers great clearance on steep ice. The grip on the axe is top notch, the trigrest really adds to this allowing you to move it how you please, giving you the option of the better grip either moving it lower or higher up the shaft towards the pick when it comes to steeper ice. This was a huge factor for me when l was faced with overhanging ice nearer the end of my climb so l could really get more of my weight supported throughout the axe. Watch the video below to see more about the great features of this product.

The TRIGREST hand rest braces the hand and the index finger (easily adjustable without tools). The upper part, equipped with the grip, allows the user to comfortably switch hands. The lower trigger is used to brace the index finger to improve the stability of the ice axe and increase striking precision. Because of the head's modular construction, it adapts to any situation. The QUARK ice axe is easy to use: its balance and its ICE pick allow solid placements on any type of ice. Hooking is more efficient, thanks to the clearance under the head and to the shape of the pick. The Griprest and the Tridrest hand rests ensure a comfortable, powerful grip adapted to leash less climbing.

The Verdict

This really is the all round tool for mixed ice climbing, it truly is an axe that can be used in many different climbing situations. By allowing you the freedom to do whatever you wish, Petzl have created a product that is adaptable and ready for whatever challenges you might face on the mountain. For me, having a tool that is completely adaptable in any mountaineering condition is how we are going to truly progress the most. There was never any restrictions when it came to the Petzl Charlet Quark products. After using this axe I am only more excited to use it again on my next climb.

Don't forget to get involved with the conversation, share your own photos and reviews from your adventures with us using #MyTiso!

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