cram·​pon | \ˈkram-ˌpän \

Definition of crampon 

1 : a hooked clutch or dog for raising heavy objects usually used in plural

2 : a climbing iron used especially on ice and snow in mountaineering usually used in plural

Illustration of crampon

Illustration of crampon

crampon 2

Examples of crampon in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Well, if your crampons are on the bottom of your backpack, that makes for an insanely scary situation. Matt Goulet, Popular Mechanics, "The Eddie Bauer Sisu Is a Hiking Pack Perfected," 26 Dec. 2016 The climb from the south is not considered technical, but the Forest Service recommends use of crampons and an ice ax. Hal Bernton, The Seattle Times, "Oregon man dies on Mount Adams," 29 May 2018 Conditions have recently been icy, so hikers are encouraged to wear proper footwear, including some type of crampon. Milwaukee, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Don't have a parking voucher for Lapham Peak candlelight hike? Don't show up.," 22 Jan. 2018 Strap on harness and crampons to head out with your expert mountain guide for a walk on the glacier. Jack Dancy, Town & Country, "How to Plan a Trip to Europe," 5 Oct. 2016 The clients all learned the basic crampon and ice-ax techniques and eventually scratched their way up the face. Nathaniel Wilder, Smithsonian, "A Daring Journey Into the Big Unknown of America’s Largest National Park," 18 Apr. 2018 Every year, hundreds of climbers flock to base camp, many of whom have never put on crampons or set foot above 20,000 feet. Time, "The Ethics of Climbing Everest: Double Amputee Xia Boyu’s Feat Fuels Debates About Who Belongs on the Roof of the World," 3 Apr. 2018 The farmers need 150,000 to 300,000 gallons every night to repair the damage done by climbers swinging ice tools and kicking crampons during the day. Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, "On Thin Ice in Ouray," 24 Apr. 2018 On a foggy day in September 2013, 23-year-old Dawa Yangzum Sherpa pulled her crampons tight against the bottom of her boots, taking care to tuck in the loose ends of the straps. Anna Callaghan, Outside Online, "Smashing Guiding's Glass Ceiling," 3 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crampon.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of crampon

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for crampon

Middle English, from Middle French crampon, of Germanic origin; akin to Middle Dutch crampe

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Dictionary Entries near crampon


cramp iron




cramp ring


Statistics for crampon

Last Updated

19 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for crampon

The first known use of crampon was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of crampon

: a piece of metal with sharp points on the bottom that is worn by mountain climbers on the bottom of boots to make it easier to walk on ice and snow

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a nest or breeding place

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