I'd just like to say that I've been impressed with this shovel but I have a couple of important quibbles with it. Cutting snow out for avalanche tests, a very important function of a back country shovel, would be made much easier by the cutting area and base of the scoop being flat. The concavity of this shovel and the trough running along most of its base made cutting the snow flat very awkward, and compression tests difficult and painful enough to be unreliable. This is a big design flaw but not insurmountable. I hope to see a redesign on the market soon as it is potentially a very good product.