Trekking poles are a great piece of equipment that not nearly enough hikers and backpackers use. Particularly if you are carrying around a heavy load, hiking trekking poles are a crucial piece of gear to have with you. They allow you take some of the weight off of your knees, which is often a joint that suffers with hikers and backpackers. Hiking trekking poles can also increase stability, and even provide a stable platform for taking pictures. A very versatile piece of equipment.
Hiking Trekking PolesWhat to look at when you're reviewing hiking trekking poles.
- Material – When considering hiking trekking poles you have two choices for material, which are aluminum and carbon fiber. Aluminum is heavier, but also quite a bit cheaper. Carbon is lighter and more expensive, and also a little more brittle and prone to breaking in lower temperatures.
- Fixed or Adjustable – Most trekking poles are telescoping, which allows you to fine tune the length so that it’s just right for you. But there are a few pairs of fixed length trekking poles out there. The main benefit of using fixed length trekking poles is that they tend to weigh less than the adjustable kind.
Best Hiking Trekking PolesSome of the best hiking trekking poles for your next outdoor adventure.
- REI Traverse Trekking Poles - If you would prefer something cheap and basic for trekking poles, REI's in house brand is usually fairly reliable. These are a basic pair of telescoping trekking poles, meaning they're an adjustable length. They're made with aluminum, and have soft foam on the handles for maximum comfort, but there's nothing fancy here. They weigh 19.1 ounces or 541 grams for the pair, they're unisex, but the most attractive thing about these trekking poles is definitely the price.
- Black Diamond Ultra Distance Trekking Poles - The Ultra Distance poles are a step in the complete opposite direction from the basic REI poles above. First, they're fixed length, and fold like tent poles do, rather than telescope down like most trekking poles. So that means you need to pick the right size for you, because you cant adjust them. They're also carbon fiber, to help save on weight, and at just 9.5 ounces, or 269 grams for the large size, they're lighter than just about anything else out there on the market. They also won the 2011 Backpacker magazine Editor's Choice award, and really are an excellent choice if you want lightweight trekking poles to take hiking.
- Leki Corklite Aergon Speedlock Anti-Shock - If you want solid trekking poles with all the bells and whistles, these from Leki are a good choice. They have the nice cork handles that some of the higher end trekking poles feature, for maximum comfort over hours of use. They also have anti-shock built in, which again maximizes your comfort when you're using them for hours on end. They're made with aluminum, are adjustable, and weigh in at 18.6 ounces, or 527 grams.