Mammut Ophir - Kid's Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Dual adjust waist belt, large gear loops, kids can adjust easily, comfortable
Cons: Not the lightest
The perforated foam waist belt and leg loops breathe well and the wear indicators on the tie in point and belay loop alert the user to when it's time for retirement. It even has a place to clip a chalk bag, so it doesn't hang down to their knees. It's comfortable for both long hanging sessions as well as for just hanging out in, playing with toys in the dust while mom takes a burn on her project. And of course, the kids love the wooly mammoth logos.
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The impressive set of features come together to make a great fully-functional harness that will surely please any serious kid crusher! We used this harness for everything, from basic gym top roping to following long trad pitches and extended hanging belay sessions. This harness didn't pose any shortcomings.
The Ohir kept the kids comfortable and focused as they hung over and over on that hard move they just couldn't seem to pull! The best harness is one that feels good and this does the trick.
Both the waist belt, as well as the leg loops, have a split webbing design to help disperse the weight and the perforated foam padding in between to keep things cool and airy. The rise was high enough to keep kids from being pitched backward when lowering or hanging, and after a couple of weeks of steady climbing, this became a favorite by our testers, and unsurprisingly a couple of arguments between sisters ensued over who got to use it.
Standing Comfort and Mobility
Not only is this a comfortable harness for hanging in, but it is also quite comfortable in general. it didn't matter if we were climbing or just playing around the base, we found no discomfort. We spent day after day for weeks going to all types of crags all through the southeast and southwestern desert. Visiting new areas usually involves a lot of downtime for the kids; much of that time, the kids would have to occupy themselves, all the while wearing different harnesses.
While one tester was hanging in a harness up on the wall working through some hard moves, another was sitting in the dirt working on school work (#roadschooling), looking for a cave in the talus or a Hueco to climb into. The Ophir was one of the more comfortable sit harnesses in these scenarios. The leg and waist padding is rigid enough to disperse weight when hanging but soft enough to be comfortable around the base as well. We loaded up the gear loops with heavy cams and draws when cleaning long pitches, and the harness still sat well on the hips. It remained comfortable for hanging at the belay while sorting gear and preparing for a lower.
The Ophir has all the features any kid would ever need in a harness. Each feature seems to have been designed with real-world use in mind.
The slide-bloc auto-locking buckles on the waist belt and leg loops are some of the few "easy" sliding buckles that kid fingers had no problem adjusting. The webbing strap ends have a plastic reinforcement to keep the buckles from unthreading, adding to the safety and security of the harness. The dual adjusting waist belt buckles are nice and allow the harness to be adjusted equally on both sides, assuring the waist belt can sit square on the hips.
On that same note, the gear loops sit square on the hips in easily accessible locations in contrast to the ill-fitting Black Diamond Momentum, which has a single waist adjustment that gets offset almost no matter the size of the child. The gear loops are also large and stand off the hips well, allowing for smooth clipping and unclipping.
A lot of new climbers will clip their chalk bag to a gear loop or haul loop. This is rarely a good place for it since it rides too low, almost out of reach or off to one side. We usually recommend using a chalk bag belt, so it rides higher; however, the chalk bag clip point on the back of this harness is high enough to position the chalk bag in a decent location. Dual webbing construction in the leg loops and waist belt spread the forces well and have breathable perforated foam panels that add more breathability than expected. Rear elastic risers have an easy-to-use adjustment buckle that does a good job of keeping the leg loops in place.
Mammut added extra abrasion protection at tie-in loops, and the belay ring has an internal red wear indicator that, after years of use, will alert the user that it's time for retirement.
The Ophir is a super versatile harness that works great for kids just graduating up to a sit harness, and serious competitors who lead harder routes than their parents. The fully adjustable buckles on both the waist and leg loops fit a wide range of kids. Whether they are just entering the sport and are top-roping at the gym or they are starting to lead outdoor sport, this harness has everything they need in a comfortable, easy-to-use package.
The two gear loops are large; combined, they can hold up to 18 draws, so budding sport climbers won't be restricted by space for racking gear, and the belay loop is large and easy to belay from.
The price compared to the function and performance of this harness give it a great value. It does everything the others do, and much more in many cases. It's around the same price as the other sit harnesses in the test, many of which have some significant shortcomings, but it is hard to find an area in which this harness suffers or performs poorly. The Black Diamond Momentum for instance, while may have a slightly more comfortable standing comfort rating, has issues with fit due to the single waist belt buckle (that tends to put the harness off-center). The Petzl Macchu, while it has a great design for all kinds of climbing, doesn't quite have the comfort that this one does.
This harness is a great all-around/sport harness. It works great for general use, but it comes into its own when supporting a kid who is exploring his or her possibilities within climbing. It makes a great harness for kids hangdogging their latest top rope project or leading their hardest redpoint to date. It has tons of useful features that make it one of the best overall sit harnesses in our test, perfect for any kid regardless of how experienced they are or what their goals may be. Not only does it have features that the climber can appreciate, but it also has safety features that give peace of mind to the adults in the room (or canyon, or valley, or creek).
— Adam Paashaus