Trekking poles are a must-have piece of hiking equipment.

The best trekking poles are light and comfortable to hold, reduce fatigue (especially when carrying a pack), and improve stability on water crossings and slippery, steep downhills.

ProductPrice Rating
BAFX Products Anti-Shock$$Rating 4.3 out of 5
Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber $$Rating 4.1 out of 5
Himal Collapsible Alpenstocks$$Rating 4.8 out of 5
Kelty Range 2.0$$Rating 4.6 out of 5
Vorosy Trekking Poles$$Rating 4.5 out of 5
Pacemaker Stix Expedition Trekking Poles$$Rating 4.5 out of 5
Black Diamond Alpine Trekking Pole$$$Rating 4.7 out of 5

Pros and cons of using trekking sticks or poles:

Pros

  • Similar in design to ski poles, the trekking poles make to possible to use the upper body strength to proper upward and forward. Whether it is navigating steep, rocky hills or the mostly flat ground, the trek poles make it possible to up the normal hiking pace.
  • Walking poles are joint-friendly and minimize the impact caused to the legs (feet, ankles, knees, and thighs). The most noticed benefit of using the poles is when traveling downhill and lowers the impact on the knees by nearly 25%.
  • Use the trekking poles much-like a stick to help clear spider webs, push back picky bushes, or other actions for obstacles blocking the normal hiking path.
  • Trekking sticks make it easier to maintain a constant speed and rhythm which means it is possible to complete a hiking trail within the fastest time-frame.
  • Avoid mishaps on the slippery trail surfaces (loose rocks, snow, mud, etc) and stay well-balanced and progress faster because of the extra contact points with the ground.
  • Trekking sticks are useful probes and make it possible to instantly detect the depth of puddles, quicksand, or snowfall.
  • Use the poles to help distract or scare off unwanted attention from wildlife on or near the hiking trails. Throw the pole like a spear or wave overhead to attempt to appear much bigger.
  • Help to lessen the load of a heavy pack on the back. For instance, leaning on the trekking sticks makes it possible to alleviate some of the weight.

Other alternative roles for the trekking poles include using them as a medical splint or a substitute for damage tent poles.

Cons

Even thought the trek poles provide plenty of beneficial uses, there are also one or two negligible drawbacks to consider.

  • The constant need to hold the poles and use the arms more actively means the energy expenditure on the hiking trip is increased.
  • The poles are easily caught up in the bushes or tangled in the rocks.

Other issues include having a negative impact on trails, not always easy to store, and limits hand function.

 

Best Trekking Poles: A Buyer’s Guide

BAFX Products Anti-Shock

The Good

  • Low-cost
  • Easy to adjust
  • Relatively light
  • Shock absorption

The Bad

  • Not the lightest

The BAFX Products Anti-Shock is a great introduction to the world of trekking poles (and not expensive either).

The actual poles are manufactured in lightweight, yet durable aluminum and come with a 12-month warranty against defects which indicates the solid built. Poles extend from 25.5 to 53 inches for more personalized comfort in handle the poles. Plus, the spring-loaded anti-shock system (located in the upper section) is further designed to give comfort on the trails. A choice of durable tips (snow disk, rubber foot, standard tip) is applied to the trekking poles for better control. Plus, each of the anti-shock sticks comes with a soft plastic grip with attached wrist strap.

 

Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber

The Good

  • Quick lock height adjustment
  • Easy to adjust

The Bad

  • Foam grips slip

Are you searching for the best trekking poles at a reasonable price?

The Cascade Mountain Tech carbon fiber are designed with built in height adjustment (adjusts between 23 and 53-inches) and made from carbon fiber (each pole weights just 8 ounces). Plus, each of the trek poles comes with multiple tips: baskets for use in snow, rubber caps for regular hiking, and tungsten carbide tips for special terrain or ice. The adjustability factor of the poles means a perfect fit is achievable for a short, tall, or in between hiker. Since the poles are light at 8 oz each, there is no need to be concerned with being weighed down or slowed down. Instead, the hiking experience will be that much more productive. Cascade Mountain Tech products come with a 100% guarantee.

 

Himal Collapsible Alpenstocks

The Good

  • Dual handles
  • Comfortable foam handles
  • Solid design and fittings
  • Easy to adjust

The Bad

  • Shortest length is 45 inches

The Himal Collapsible Alpenstocks is extremely durable thanks to its aircraft-grade 7075 aluminum alloy construction.

This trekking pole is adjustable (45 to 53 inches) but the shorter length might not be the perfect fit for every hiker. For extra comfort while on the hiking trail, the pole has an EVA foam handle which is sweat-absorbent and comes with a useful wrist strap. Plus, for great safety and support under foot the pole has a tungsten steel rod tip which gives greater abrasion resistant. In its most compact size, the Himal poles measure just 13.4 inches when collapsed and this is usually short enough to fit perfectly in the backpack.

 

Kelty Range 2.0

The Good

  • Comfortable straps
  • Easy to adjust

The Bad

  • Vibrations

The Kelty Range 2.0 trekking poles for hiking or backpackinginclude built-in anti-shock, non-slip carbide tip, and textured EVA foam and cork handle.

The internal anti-shock spring technology makes descending even the steepest hill less threatening to the knees. Plus, the ability to adjust the trek poles (27 to 53-inches) makes it possible to match the terrain or hiker’s body size. Hand grips in EVA and cork provides all-weather grip and comfort (less likely to cause blisters) to minimize issues with slipping in the difficult terrain or weather conditions. The poles are relatively lightweight and weigh 20 oz. / 571 g (pair). Whether it is navigating the asphalt, rock, or dirt/gravel terrain, the Kelty Range 2.0 poles are a great addition to the must-have list of hiking gear.

 

Vorosy Trekking Poles

The Good

  • Easy to adjust size-wise
  • Lightweight

The Bad

  • No spring or shock-absorption

The Vorosy trekking poles are built to be super light weight (about 0.45 lb each), yet still sturdy for most hikers.

The handle has a EVA foam finish for a greater degree of comfort and sweat-absorbent. Plus, for ease in keeping hold of the pole, an adjustable and anti-slip wrist strap is included. For ease in traversing the most difficult terrain, the poles are finished with hard-wearing tungsten steel tips for challenging, rocky, or uneven terrain, general rubber feet for the easy, flat terrain, and large disks for great ease in passing the soft surfaces (snow, mud, etc.). Similar to most other walking poles, these sticks are designed to adjust (24.4 to 52-inches) for ease in matching the hiker’s height and reach.

 

Pacemaker Stix Expedition Trekking Poles

The Good

  • Easy to adjust
  • Multiple attachments
  • Telescoping

The Bad

  • Little bit heavier than others

The Pacemaker Stix Expedition trekking poles are constructed in aircraft grade 7075 aluminum and weigh approx 10.5 ounces/pole.

The telescoping aspect of the trek poles makes it possible to adjust the size from 27 to 54-inches. For a comfortable grip, the poles include a durable and sweat-absorbing cork handle. Multiple tips are included such as vulcanized “long-life” rubber feet and tungsten tips to make it possible to trek the most difficult and challenging trail paths. Plus, it comes with a 12-month warranty against defects.

 

Black Diamond Alpine Trekking Pole

The Good

  • Very light
  • Easy to lock
  • Non-slip grip

The Bad

  • Bit expensive

The Black Diamond Alpine trekking poles are built to provide supreme adjustability, premium cork grip, and super-comfort for hiking on the regular trails or snow covered paths.

The trek poles have a lightweight construction and made in 100% carbon fiber. For ease in matching the terrain, the poles can accept interchangeable carbide tips and include non-slip EVA foam grips. The usable length for the poles varies from 25 to 51-inches for ease in matching to the specific size of the hiker. Plus, the weight per pair of poles is 1 lb 1.2 oz / 490 grams.

ProductPrice Rating
BAFX Products Anti-Shock$$Rating 4.3 out of 5
Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber $$Rating 4.1 out of 5
Himal Collapsible Alpenstocks$$Rating 4.8 out of 5
Kelty Range 2.0$$Rating 4.6 out of 5
Vorosy Trekking Poles$$Rating 4.5 out of 5
Pacemaker Stix Expedition Trekking Poles$$Rating 4.5 out of 5
Black Diamond Alpine Trekking Pole$$$Rating 4.7 out of 5