The first place I used a set of Omega Link Cams was in Joshua Tree, CA. My partner had purchased a single rack, purple to yellow. It was November and our goal was to climb 50 crags and 100 routes. Camped out in Indian Cove, we racked up an assortment of cams, nuts and tricam’s and spent several days and nights plugging gear and enjoying the cool temperatures.
By day three, I had placed the Link Cam at least 50 times and was dumfounded as to how well they fit the cracks. I began saving them for crux moves or difficult anchors placements. On Moosedog Tower, I slipped a green .75 Link under the roof of the South Face Direct and pulled the 5.9 roof. Above the roof, I looked back and noticed that the cam was absolutely solid, no walking, no movement what so ever.
If measured by weight alone, the Link Cam comes up leaning on the heavy side of the road. (By the way the Purple and Green are the same weight as many competitors) The Red and Yellow add less than 100 grams. The advantage starts simply with the diversity of placements, (Link Cams provide a wider range of placement than any other camming device.) The trustworthy single-axle design offers a 2.5:1 ratio, (A Greg Lowe inspiration). This extended range of placement means that you can plug the crux without hassle. I found that saving the .75 Green and 1 Red covered anchor set-ups almost without fail. As for walking; I find that with proper use of runners, even tricky traverses are not an issue. Omega Pacific uses a unique Metal-Injection-Molding on the inner links on each lobe, 17-4 aircraft stainless steel does the job and gives me a ton of confidence. As for the cost… a set of Link Cams will put a dent in your beer money, but they are definitely worth every sip lost! Buy a rack of four and tell me if I’m wrong.
Cons are the cost and weight.
As an alpinist, I’m often dealing with poor rock, long run-outs, weather issues and long ascents in isolated areas. To move fast and light while climbing in the Alps, I tend to carry less gear, but a variety of cams and nuts which will overcome the unique placements often found on the classic granite and limestone peaks. Adding a set of Link-Cams into my arsenal will offer more security on the lead and speed with anchor set-ups. As for single pitch rock routes, the Link Cam covers crux moves like nothing I have used in the past. I’m hooked on Link Cams!
Reviewer: Lou Renner, International Mountain and Climbing Guide for 30 years and Contributing MyClimb Writer