Recommendation Needed - Trekking/Hiking Poles - ClubTread Community

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post #1 of (permalink) Old 01-26-2020, 02:37 PM Thread Starter
Hittin' the Trails
 
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Default Recommendation Needed - Trekking/Hiking Poles

Hey everyone, my boyfriend’s birthday is coming up and he’s been wanting to replace some trekking/hiking poles he had a long time ago that broke. He’s 6’5”, so I’m just looking to find something that will be suitable for his height. I’m not sure what to look for, so any recommendations would be great. I don’t have a huge budget, so please not the most expensive ones but also not the cheapest. Thanks in advance!
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 01-26-2020, 07:40 PM
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For his height, he needs a pole that is at least 135 cm when extended. I think 140 cm is the maximum extended pole length that's made. There is a lot of things to consider about hiking poles like locking mechanism, pole material, shock absorbing or not, handle or grip material, compactness and how many section it comes in. The proper fit is something like the elbow being bent 90 deg when griping the pole upright. I don't bother with that instead extend it to whatever length feels comfortable.
I opted to buy a cheap pole at Canadian Tire ($40) since they don't last long for me. Lifespan is about 2 to 3 years. I've gone through 3 pairs of poles over the years. Rockslides are tough on poles since they get banged around a lot, scratched and sometimes bent. I've bent two pairs of poles and they don't collapse all the way. I noticed that poles with a twisting locking mechanism loosens up now and then when I'm hiking and it ends up collapsing. It's annoying having to lengthen and retighten the poles. Sometimes it happens several times on single outing. Maybe clips are better because I've read that eventually the twisting locks wear out as it did on one pair of poles I owned. I couldn't lock the extended sections anymore. I like cork for the handle part since it's warmer but it does get dirty (black) after a while. I would check out some articles on the internet about how to select hiking poles.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 01-27-2020, 03:20 AM
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That is interesting solo75, because my experience is different & I'd definitely advise against cheap poles. I use mine on rough terrain, scrambling, scree chutes etc and am able to get much more than 2-3 yrs out of them. 5-6 is more like it. Mine are Leki and I am supper satisfied. Only gripe I have is this anti-shock mechanism, because they tend to collapse at times.


I also use only one pole (which doubles the life span I guess!). This is habit created by scrambling scree chimneys at one side or the other (never in the middle!); one hand on pole, other free for rock wall. So now even when I 'only' hike, it's just one pole. Hiked 4 weeks Annapurnas last month, single pole, bought in Jasper, AB in 2006 (!). Nice to have other hand free.



My advice is: You get what you pay for. It is worth investing in good set of poles if budget is not a problem. And Leki is excellent brand.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 01-27-2020, 02:19 PM
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I've had a pair of basic Black Diamond hiking poles for many years and would recommend them. They have the flick lock mechanism which I would recommend over the twist lock mechanism. I had a pair of Komperdells with the twist mechanism, which stopped working after a few years.
The BD poles are probably an older version of these:
https://www.mec.ca/en/product/6000-518/Trail-Trek-Poles
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 01-27-2020, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by martin View Post
They have the flick lock mechanism which I would recommend over the twist lock mechanism.
Next time I will get a flip lock. I have over-tightened twist lock poles because they collapse on me and I couldn't get them loose again.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 01-27-2020, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by zeljkok View Post
I also use only one pole (which doubles the life span I guess!). This is habit created by scrambling scree chimneys at one side or the other (never in the middle!); one hand on pole, other free for rock wall.
Yeah, that makes sense. It's more stable to grab onto things going up and down a steep slope than using both poles.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 01-27-2020, 05:59 PM
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Probably not an useful answer to the OP, but I just use my ski poles. They are the right height, don't collapse, weigh less than hiking poles, and are much cheaper. Plus I can mix and match old ski poles.

When I get to the point in a hike when I don't want to use them, I just drop them and pick them up on the way back. So no need to collapse them for storing on my pack. Sure, it doesn't work for a different descent route, but it hasn't been a problem yet.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 01-27-2020, 07:35 PM
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maegan,
A very thoughtful gift.

I find trekking poles to be a very personal item: the heft, weight, feel of handle in the hand, how it maneuvers, how sturdy it feels when you lean on it. Even the color.

So, in this specific circumstance, my recommendation would be to purchase the poles at a decent outdoor gear store with a good return policy and a good selection. Black Diamond is quite reputable, if that is within your budget. Look for a tall sales associate and maybe ask what that person uses?

My pole is a Leki with a cork handle - very nice! (The other pole met its end in Glacier NP, USA, possibly absconded with by a goat.) Purchased in 2003. I take them/it back to the store from time to time for cleaning or replacement of segments.

zeljkok, was it the Annapurna Circuit, and do you have a lavishly illustrated TR to whet the appetite?
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 01-27-2020, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by ColdBrook View Post

zeljkok, was it the Annapurna Circuit, and do you have a lavishly illustrated TR to whet the appetite?

Both Annapurna Circuit and Annapurna Base Camp, with few more things in between. Will post next month, now still on the road (with Leki pole in storage in Bangkok). Unless coronavirus gets me first, lol
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 01-28-2020, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by solo75 View Post
Yeah, that makes sense. It's more stable to grab onto things going up and down a steep slope than using both poles.

The rockies are littered with busted crappy poles. Buy good poles. As an example I use BD poles that have interchangeable baskets for either summer or winter(more flotation) and always TWO poles. Btw, IF I need a free hand to cling onto something I just slip my hand thru the wrist strap and I'm good to go.
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post #11 of (permalink) Old 01-28-2020, 10:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woodenshoes View Post
The rockies are littered with busted crappy poles. Buy good poles. As an example I use BD poles that have interchangeable baskets for either summer or winter(more flotation) and always TWO poles. Btw, IF I need a free hand to cling onto something I just slip my hand thru the wrist strap and I'm good to go.

Yes, and I have taken down several times that garbage people just toss when it breaks.



Noone will argue 2 poles give you more stability and support than one. But it also ties both hands while hiking too. I like to have second hand free - photos with compact out of pocket, snack while walking, pull out water bottle out of side pocket without stopping (if I didn't bring bladder), etc etc. I tried both once or twice on multi day backpacks and it always felt more like a nuisance than help. At the end everyone is different and need to find what works best for them.
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post #12 of (permalink) Old 01-30-2020, 12:07 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone for your replies with tips and suggestions! I really appreciate it!
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post #13 of (permalink) Old 02-07-2020, 12:43 PM
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A totally different idea: A staff from some sturdy wood works fine. Two years ago I met two Basks in the mountains of northern Spain. They were using wooden staffs, about as long as their own hight. I tried it myself and will continue using one. It works, it's organic, it's cheap and when it breaks you can leave it in natur as it will simply rot away.

Tja...
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post #14 of (permalink) Old 02-08-2020, 01:50 AM
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wooden stick can never even remotely match the reliability & performance of well designed hiking pole. I will agree with 'organic' part though
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