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2007-08 Shovels

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The Mini Telepro's small D-grip sits well in the hand, and its ergonomics help compensate for the short shaft.Gripes: The shovel blade is too curved,…

The Mini Telepro’s small D-grip sits well in the hand, and its ergonomics help compensate for the short shaft.

  • Gripes: The shovel blade is too curved, which makes it tough to plumb a pit wall or execute a decent shovel shear test.
  • Props: Simple, compact design – the shovel fits well in any pack.
    $40; www.voile-usa.com

    A great digging shovel with an extra-long shaft, the Pitboss was too large to fit into a guide pack, but it sure moves snow.Gripes: The poorly placed…

    A great digging shovel with an extra-long shaft, the Pitboss was too large to fit into a guide pack, but it sure moves snow.

  • Gripes: The poorly placed quick-release button that holds the blade to the shaft could be accidentally released by shoveling. Not good.
  • Props: The flat blade is great for digging pits.
    $60; www.life-link.com

    The compact - and damn stylish - Spadetech slips into any pack. But our guiding crew thought the scaled down shovel lacked the necessary bulk to…

    The compact – and damn stylish – Spadetech slips into any pack. But our guiding crew thought the scaled down shovel lacked the necessary bulk to effectively dig.

  • Gripes: It’s too small to unbury an avalanche victim.
  • Props: The durable shaft and blade hold up in low temperatures.
    $74; www.genuineguidegear.com

    This one has it all: quick-draw deployment, a flat back for clean test pits, and a pointed blade to chip away hard snow.Gripes: The handle feels…

    This one has it all: quick-draw deployment, a flat back for clean test pits, and a pointed blade to chip away hard snow.

  • Gripes: The handle feels short and could benefit from an eight-inch extension.
  • Props: It’s hefty enough to move massive amounts of snow, and the curved shaft works well for digging.
    $60; www.bdel.com

    The wide blade and long shaft are ideal for for digging pits, moving snow, and testing the snowpack with shovel shear tests.Gripes: The bulky shovel…

    The wide blade and long shaft are ideal for for digging pits, moving snow, and testing the snowpack with shovel shear tests.

  • Gripes: The bulky shovel handle is hard to pack.
  • Props: That same handle has an oval shaft that increases the shovel’s strength and automatically aligns the quick-release.
    $90; www.bcaccess.com