Review Detail

(Updated: December 13, 2007)
Overall rating 
Type of Use 
Frequency of Use 
Technical Skill Required 
Ease of Use 

Tenex - Great Beginner's Eye to Eye tail

I was interested to note the other experiences here - I have found Tenex to be one of the longest lasting and most dependable materials for an eye to eye tail.

Type of Use - I give it 3 for because I find it works equally well for both rec users and pros.

Frequency could easily be a 5 - but now I have tails of different compositions and I use them in rotation.

Durability - I have to give it a 5. I still have, and use, my first Tenex tail from 1993 that I used almost daily for years. It is important to note that I rarely descend with the same config that I use to go up. I always switch over to a descender to come down.

Ease - one thing about Tenex - it's soft and feels great in your hand.

And I say it's great for beginners because it is the surest gripping material I have found. It's soft and pliable and grips instantly, for every hitch I have tried.

I have introduced a few novices to climbing. Just rigged them up, showed them "the ropes" (Slaying myself yet again) and supervised some low climbs. It's usually Tenex and a VT, complete with micro-pulley. Because I know there's NO WAY Tenex tied in a VT with a micro-pulley will ever slip, fail, or otherwise scare the individual with any kind of unpredictability. If you take your hands off it, it stops, guaranteed.

And I purposefully don't use it in some high-load climbing scenarious, like secure foot lock, because it hunkers down so tight that it's a little harder to advance than others that keep their roundness better. Tenex is too soft to keep roundness under load.

Desi says he likes tenex best for a lanyart prusik. I find that as a lanyard adjuster it grips a little too tightly. If I'm pressing my legs into the trunk and creating tension on my flipline, tenex gets so tight that sometime it takes two hands to let it out. Ultra-tech, which is what I like for my flipline adjusters, works well one-handed even under lots of tension.

Strength and durability - I have always used it for ascending and positioning, not for zipping down. And I have to give it excellent ratings.

Portability - it's nothing to begin with, and it stuffs down to less-than-nothing.



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