Big updates are happening in the land of ascenders. Black Diamond has completely rehauled and retooled the nForce, changing the name, simplifying the design and adding some features that beg the question: “Why hasn’t anyone thought of this before?” Meanwhile, Petzl’s designers have outdone themselves once again: They took the award-winning Ascension and challenged themselves to make everything about it 20% better for their 2015 update.

Scroll to 1:56 to see and hear about the new ascender features by Black Diamond & Petzl

2015 Belay Device & Ascender Showdown from WeighMyRack.

Black Diamond, Index Ascender

Black Diamond Index Ascender

  • 200 grams
  • Enables your index finger, in addition to the normal thumb catch, to release the cam (difficult to see in the photo – the index hole becomes larger when a rope is present)
  • Index finger trigger is particularly helpful when there is no weight on the rope
  • Dual density grip and trigger
  • Removed the 4-bar linkage design of the nForce

Petzl, Ascension Ascender

Petzl Ascention Ascender

  • 20% lighter than the previous Ascension
  • Bigger more ergonomic thumb catch
  • Top of the device is more ergonomic for using two hands
  • Pinky rest is more comfortable
  • 1 large bottom hole to accommodate multiple ‘biners (vs 2 holes)


Can’t wait for these guys to come out? Here are the current models:

[apwizard]+Petzl Ascension | +Black Diamond nforce,10,,,,,- [/apwizard]