ice ax


: a combination pick and adze with a spiked handle that is used in mountain climbing

Illustration of ice ax

Illustration of ice ax

Examples of ice ax in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Prosecutors said evidence showed that Gunnarsson put on gloves, which were found at the scene, then used a 24-inch-long ice ax to strike Pham in the head, face, and neck more than 10 times. Nicole Acosta, Peoplemag, 30 Oct. 2023 Five days earlier, U.S. Forest Service employees had seen a man walking from that car toward the glacier — about 12 miles northwest of downtown Juneau — wearing a T-shirt and carrying an ice ax and a climbing helmet. Marisa Iati, Washington Post, 19 July 2023 Ramón Mercader, an agent of Joseph Stalin’s, slipped into Leon Trotsky’s study in Mexico City in 1940 and sank an ice ax into his head. Julian E. Barnes, New York Times, 19 June 2023 Powell has pleaded not guilty to eight counts, including felony destruction of federal property and obstruction of a congressional proceeding after allegedly carrying an ice ax and a large wooden pole into the Capitol while wearing a pink hat and using a bullhorn. Washington Post, 20 Mar. 2021 Mekha El-Rashidi checked his ice ax's hold, the grip of the crampon claws on his boots, the tension in the ropes. Keith Matheny, Detroit Free Press, 22 Feb. 2023 That can include not only snowshoes and ski poles but also an ice ax and crampons. Los Angeles Times, 12 Jan. 2023 Libecki regularly swings the stove like a weapon into a rock or hits it with an ice ax to remove ice from the exterior. Joe Jackson, Outside Online, 10 Aug. 2020 Allen was seen carrying a green Osprey backpack, ice ax and crampons and was using a green Nemo tent. From Usa Today Network and Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 22 July 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ice ax.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1800, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of ice ax was circa 1800

Dictionary Entries Near ice ax

Cite this Entry

“Ice ax.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

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