Billy Goat Technologies is the manufacturer and distributor for BGT Ascent Plates. The Ascent Plates are a U.S. Patented alpine snowshoe for technical terrain made from an aluminum plate component that fits between the ski-mountaineering boot or snowboard boot and a crampon. The Ascent Plates are a tool that provide increased climbing efficiency and crampon security in soft steep terrain.
The plates have gone thru various stages of development since 2004 when Jon Johnston made the first pair out of a scrap of laminate flooring in his Pemberton, BC garage to assist climbing the north face of Plinth Peak in the Coast Range. The flooring didn’t last long, but the concept worked amazingly well. Soon in conjunction with the late Jack Hannan (1975-2010), they created multiple prototypes out of various materials until settling on aluminum for its light-weight, strength and ease of manufacturing.
Jon and Jack tested the plates extensively on some of the most difficult lines in North America, including the first winter ascent and descent of the 'Beautiful Nightmare' on Plinth Peak, BC; an attempt of the southwest ridge of Mt. St. Elias, AK (reaching 16,000’); an attempt of the NE face Mt. Queen Bess BC.; Mt. Hickson, BC (various lines), Mt. Rainier, WA; Joffre Peak BC, both Twisting Couloir to NW face direct and Central Couloir; Mt. Sampson BC, North Face and DD couloir; Mt. Meager BC by various lines, and countless other routes around BC and AK. Together they pioneered many routes around the Pemberton area, using snowmobiles to access remote areas and climb lines that most would not have attempted. The ascent plates were crucial to the success of many of those missions and friends began to ask for sets.
In 2012 Jon Johnston and Lance Edwards founded Billy Goat Technologies with the intent to manufacture and distribute the plates. With the value of human powered climbs increasing the plates have become a more popular tool in the kits of high caliber ski mountaineers and have now been used around the world.