HIKING & TREKKING POLES
Hiking poles: the essential accessory for hikers
Hiking poles quickly become essential accessories for hikers. They secure your step and give you more stability. They serve as additional support and relieve aching muscles. Size, weight, finishes are all different criteria to consider before buying a hiking pole. Here is a little review concerning the important elements of this hiking accessory.
Is the weight of a hiking pole important?
If you are going to hike for several consecutive days, light hiking poles are recommended. Especially if you have to hang them on to your backpack which already contains all your belongings so that you are perfectly autonomous. To save space, we recommend using foldable or telescopic poles (2 or 3 sections) because they can be easily stored in a bag or left in the trunk of your car (so you never forget them).
Depending on your activity, select poles that suit you the best. 1 section for a rigid and resistant pole that you will not have to put in your backpack. 2 or 3 sections for more freedom and less rigidity.
Then choose the material: aluminium to resist torsion or carbon to save weight.
What are the advantages of a telescopic hiking pole?
Telescopic hiking poles can be adjusted easily to your size, but also to the difficulty of the terrain. The most common models are twist-lock poles. The screw inside the joint threads up into a plastic plug, making it expand against the inside of the next pole section Added grip under the handle is an advantage too. The lever-lock poles clamp easily to the right height. Heavier than the twist-lock system, they are more practical in winter when wearing gloves. Foldable poles are lighter and more compact than telescopic poles. The only drawback is that their length isnt as easy to adjust when in the mountains.
Wrist straps, handles and tips: the details that make a difference to a hiking pole
Plastic handles are harder so less comfortable than rubber, cork or foam ones. Some handles also have wrist straps, which are practical in the snow in winter. The wrist strap is used so that you dont lose the pole when walking and also secures support by preventing the hand to continually clench the handle. Tungsten carbide tips are more resistant to abrasion than steel ones. Trekking poles are sold with a summer basket and a much wider one for winter to prevent them from sinking into soft terrain.