Gear Review: Black Diamond QuickDraw Carbon Probe 320
Total Weight: 342 g / 13 ounces
Summary: The Black Diamond QuickDraw Carbon Probe is a well designed avalanche probe that is lightweight, strong, and quick to assemble. Plus it features depth markings to help in snowpack assessment. This is one of the best probes on the market and is a necessary avalanche safety tool for any backcountry enthusiast.
Going in to the backcountry this winter? You need an avalanche probe. Why not get the Black Diamond QuickDraw Carbon Probe 320? This thing rocks.
After several years, it was time to replace my old avalanche probe. I did my research, and opted for the Black Diamond QuickDraw Carbon Probe 320 because it has several features that I was specifically looking for – lightweight, over 3 meters, and depth markings. The Black Diamond QuickDraw Carbon Probe 320 fit the description, so I bought one and I’m super stoked with it.
Black Diamond designed the QuickDraw Carbon Probe 320 to be used by ski guides, snow pros, and extreme recreationalists. It’s a sturdy probe that is ideal in deep snow and glaciated terrain. It packs down small, weighs nothing, and easily slips in any avalanche tool pocket. It’s easy to buy a cheaper probe, but how does your wiggly short probe do in true avalanche debris in a deep burial situation? Test it out and you’ll realize why you need to buy a legit probe. Or at least buy one for your backcountry partner!
The QuickDraw Carbon Probe does exactly what it’s supposed to – probe the snow to identify what lies underneath the snow surface. Pull it out of your pack, sling it out, pull the cord, and you’re ready to probe.
Let’s take a closer look at the Black Diamond QuickDraw Carbon Probe:
Weight: Carbon Fiber construction means that the QuickDraw Carbon Probe weighs only 342 g / 13 ounces. It’s super strong and lightweight.
Stuff Sack: Usually an avalanche probe stuff sack is the first thing to ditch from an avalanche probe, but BD utilized one pull deployment directly from the stuff sack. The staff sack only weights 0.5 oz, and helps to protect the depth markings. If you notice it’s a nuisance when practicing avalanche rescue ditch it.
Depth Markings: I’m a big fan of depth markings on a probe. The QuickDraw Carbon Probe has high vis marks every 1 cm. Every 5 cm, the numbers are written. This makes it easy to get a quick idea of snow depth. It’s great in a snow pit when you are identifying layers. With depth markings, sometimes you can even ditch the snow science foldable ruler at home too.
Reinforced Tip: The QuickDraw Carbon Probe has a strong reinforced tip. The tip drives the probe through the snow and allows the probe to penetrate debris and limits deflection – making for more accurate probe strikes.
Length: Any serious backcountry traveler or snow professional needs at least a 3 meter probe in my opinion. This avalanche probe measures 320 cm / 126 inches. It’s perfect for any backcountry situation, any snow condition, and any snow depth.
Avalanche probes are not complicated tools. They need to be strong, long, lightweight, and quick to assemble. The QuickDraw Carbon Probe does all these things, plus it features depth markings and an easy to release trigger for disassembling the probe.
It’s a well-designed snow safety tool that lives in my backpack. Combined with my Mammut PULSE Barryvox and my BCA D-2 Hoe/Shovel I’m ready for glacier travel, snow pits, and avalanche rescue. Are you?