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hiking poles: review and comparison

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Do you use hiking poles? Have you really thought about using them and thought they were to expensive? Are the cheap ones as good as the pricey ones? all great questions. I first saw hiking sticks as a child. Waking sticks, staffs, & hiking sticks have probably been around as long as man has walked on 2 legs. Why?

What can we do with them?

 

Extra lift when climbing steep trails

Extra support when descending steep trails

Better Balance - through boulder fields, crossing streams, narrow ledges, slippery mud.

Replacement tent pole

Knocking spider webs down ahead of you on the trail

Protection against snakes, dogs, and other critters

Longer reach - things dropped in water, lifting bearbags, frisbees in trees, helping companions across streams and logs

Resting Aid to lean on

Signal for help by tying on a bandanna and waving

Noise-maker - tap it on rocks as you hike to let wildlife know you are coming

Monopod - steady your camera or GPS or compass

Trail tool to knock branches, rocks, pine cones off to the side of the trail

Increase your work load

decrease ankle knee and hip stress

increase endurance

 

I have about ten years on a Swiss Gear walmart special pair. I think i paid 12 bucks the pair.

I went back to walmart and found a pair of Outdoor Recreation brand for 18.88. I also had a buddy of mine lend me his ultra high end Leki brand(200+ bucks) for a weekend. To do my comparison i picked a trail that was a 6 mile loop. 1700 foot gain and 1700 loss in elevation.

Weather and trail conditions were almost identical. pack weight was the same.

 

First 2 trips were with each of the walmart brand poles. completion times were only ten minutes apart. Third trip was without the aid of the poles. added thirty minutes and my knees were sore for about three days. Fouth trip was today with the Leki brand. My time was was ten minutes longer than the worse of the first two trips.

 

So What did i find out? First i always want to have Hiking poles. Two, The pricey ones are not any better than the cheap ones. and if you lose or break a cheap one its no big deal. I Think that i lost time with the expensive pair becuase i was more careful with them.

 

Hope this helps some of you. So go get some cheap poles and practice that bail out on foot.

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Never used one, never had one. But youve given me something to think about. Thx

I've been hiking 1-2 times a week, 5.5mile trail, with a mix of easy and difficult terain. Some hills in there i do surely wish i had something to help out, rather than just pressing down on my knees as i slouch over out of breath :P But the trail as a whole is getting easier as I get back in shape.

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I like real wood

 

Bud K has a chinese waxwood staff if trimmed for a cold steel bushman knife and a frog gig or a

spring clamp gig it could be a valuable survival defense, hunting, fishing tool.

 

a good spear blunt on the other end and a dual point weapon and shelter half pole fishing pole etc.

 

http://budk.com/Ninja-Martial-Arts/6-Foot-Wax-Wood-Staff

 

the only thing that keep me from jumping on this is price I would need 2 or better yet I wish they would make a 6 foot model or a connector to add them together because these are crazy strong.

 

http://www.coldsteel.com/escrimastick.html

 

I like to have things that have at a minimal a dual purpose more purposes better prepared you are

also unless it has a gun a pole spear will make it think twice about jacking with you.

Edited by juzcallmesnake

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Never used one, never had one. But youve given me something to think about. Thx

I've been hiking 1-2 times a week, 5.5mile trail, with a mix of easy and difficult terain. Some hills in there i do surely wish i had something to help out, rather than just pressing down on my knees as i slouch over out of breath :P But the trail as a whole is getting easier as I get back in shape.

 

Glad to hear you are getting into shape. The poles will help the legs and also get the arms into action. Makes hiking a more full body work out. Out of breath is good as long as you know your limits. Keep up the good work NavyVet _77.

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Glad to hear you are getting into shape. The poles will help the legs and also get the arms into action. Makes hiking a more full body work out. Out of breath is good as long as you know your limits. Keep up the good work NavyVet _77.

I always take my wife with me for the 5.5miles, and carrying 15lb cambelbak each.

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