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Technical Details

I acquired my Peck from Martin Armitage in 2012.

The Peck is a forged aluminum descender. It is 183 mm. tall, 57 mm. wide, 20 mm. thick, and weighs 196 g. The eye is 18.8 mm. in diameter.

One side is stamped "PECK." It is also stamped "CMR" but that was done by a former owner.


Alan Blackshaw's Peck DescenderOf all the devices in my collection, this one took me the longest to find. I believe that I first learned of the Peck Descender from a copy of Alan’ Blackshaw’s 1968 book Mountaineering, from Hill Walking to Alpine Climbing, and that I was looking for one no later than 1969. It appears for sale in the 1968 Fisher catalog, but is absent from the 1970 Peck equipment catalog, suggesting it was discontinued in 1969, the year Trevor Peck died.

By this millennium, I had almost given up, and for some time suspected that none remained. In 2007, Stéphane Pennequin put me in touch with a British climber who had recently donated one to a museum there, and then in 2010 Stéphane found a recent photo online. I contacted the owner, but alas, he was not willing to part with his Peck. Finally, on the third day of 2012, Stéphane and I spotted this Peck on eBay. I was able to contact the seller and we quickly agreed to a mutually acceptable transaction. Although this is not the best descender in the world, to me, after 43 years of searching, it is now one of the most treasured pieces in my collection.

Needless to say, I am not going to test my Peck descender. Two things are obvious, though: The rope can come off if one lets slack into the system, and the device will cause the rappeller to spin if used on a free drop.

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