Trekking Poles

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pixelfrog
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Trekking Poles

Post by pixelfrog » Jun 03 2002 11:40 am

Hi all, My birthday's coming up and I've been wanting a set of telescoping trekking poles so I can ramble easier through creeks and such, can anyone recommend a good brand and model?

The only thing I don't really want is the cork handles, I'll wreck those quick. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance.

Paul

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ck_1
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Post by ck_1 » Jun 03 2002 12:43 pm

I think we had a thread on this a while back....overall I think the recommendations tended to side toward the angled cork handled poles...

I use a pair called the Trek'r 3. They have straight plastic handles which I wish were angled. Mine have rubber tips that are just now looking like they need to be replaced. The Trek'r 3 is made by the same company that makes the Platapus hydration systems - Cascade Designs.

We got them for an adventure race a few years ago, Cascade Designs was nice enough to kinda sponsor our team...If I were buying, I'd get a non plastic angled handle.
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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jun 03 2002 1:01 pm

Trekking poles are a good thing.

I have two different styles of Leki and like both. The aluminum poles with a hard plastic and 15 degree angle are nice. I don't grip the handle anyway I let the wrist loop push down for me. If you put your hand in right and adjust it correctly, you will not need too much of a grip at all on the upswing and none on the push. This means your hand can rotate as much as it needs and the angle of the grip is not noticed really.

My second pair are straight handled grippier plastic handled ultra-light titanium Lekis. These are shorter and are not good on the steep downhills when I backpack with a heavier load, but they are super compact and are there when I need them for an opportunistic dayhike. Since I don't grip the handles except lightly with one finger on the upswing, I don't miss the angled handles or the cork. After a few hikes you will have a rythm that is free and easy. Miles will melt away and you will really fly on the uphills. They save your back and knees on the downhills but don't make me much faster coming down. Walking through sand or mud is easier. I just leave the little trekking baskets on and forget them. Most of the time you wont need them but sometimes they really help.

I stayed away from the shocks so I could keep the weight down. Creek crossing is a whole lot easier with or without a heavy pack.
Glen

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nealz
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Re: Trekking Poles

Post by nealz » Jun 03 2002 6:42 pm

pixelfrog wrote: The only thing I don't really want is the cork handles, I'll wreck those quick.
Pixelfrog-

I've got a pair of Komperdells that I like with the cork handles. Actually the cork is impregnated with some sort of stabilizer which makes 'em last longer and stay absorbant. My buddy has a pair with the plastic grips and they tend to get a tad slimey with sweat. My .02 worth. Take care.

-Neakz

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ck_1
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Post by ck_1 » Jun 03 2002 6:48 pm

BoyNhisDog wrote: I don't grip the handle anyway I let the wrist loop push down for me. If you put your hand in right and adjust it correctly, you will not need too much of a grip at all on the upswing and none on the push. This means your hand can rotate as much as it needs and the angle of the grip is not noticed really
so does the "pressure" move to the bottom of your wrist? am I understanding what you are saying correctly? I'm interested, as I have plastic handles and Nealz friend is right...they get kinda slimmy.
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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jun 03 2002 7:47 pm

Colin, it sort of spreads out on your palm. Try this, put the Leki with the black dot in your right hand and the white in your left. Don't ask me why, it is a european thing that they left out of the instructions until recently and that makes them work better. With the strap hanging down put your hand through it from the bottom and then adjust the tightness. The strap should be comfortably around your wrist and go under your hand across your palm and come together at the web between your thumb and hand and on into the pole. Your thumb and forefinger lightly circle the top of the pole and automatically lift it and swing it forward on the upswing. After the plant, just let the pressure on the strap hold the pole down without grabbing the handle. When you get to the push let your hand rotate in a normal postition as you go through the push arc. At the end of the arc on a hard steep climb your hand will be pointing down and not gripping the pole at all.

This would be a lot easier to show you instead of describing it over the net. All I know is it really works. I do it with the angled grips or the straight ones and wear light fingerless gloves that have a psuedo leather palm and a spandex back so my hands are protected from the straps and the sun. After a lot of miles it makes a difference.

They make a new style wrist strap now too that is very nice. I have only seen it on the Leki ultra light titanium model with the angled grips. They are so expensive though. They adjust with velcrow and really hug your wrist and palm in a very good way. They also detach from the poles with the push of a tab I think. I saw these up in Durange in Gardenswartz. They were like $125 or so, no springs either. Not that I care for springs but that is high priced for not having them.
Glen

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azrocks
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a real walking stick

Post by azrocks » Jun 03 2002 8:15 pm

I was watching an elderly lady at the mall using a walking stick. It was telescoping
aluminum, but with springy pegs to fix the length, which would never slip at a
crucial moment the way hiking poles can. Also, it had the traditional curved handle,
and I wondered whether that would be better, as that shape probably evolved over
the centuries. It might swing nicely through the hand, and would be great for
hooking catclaw. I'd be tempted to try one, start a trend on Squaw Peak, but it was
built too solid to be a drug store item, probably cost the insurance co a bundle.

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tempe8
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Post by tempe8 » Jun 03 2002 10:10 pm

I've got an REI model (made by Komperdell) called the Traverse. They seem to have them on sale frequently and I picked mine up for $55. These are the only ones that I've used, but I can't live without them on big hikes (aka Humphreys or the Canyon). Mine have a hard foam type of grip and suspension.

I'm in agreement with Glen on how to hike with these poles, use the loop straps to hold your wrists and carry your weight, it decreases fatigue greatly. Get a pair, any pair, and you'll wonder how you lived without them on big hikes.

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ck_1
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Post by ck_1 » Jun 03 2002 11:18 pm

Thanks Glen :!:

I followed your instructions and figured it out...I've never worn them that way, usually the straps were an afterthought...wow...guess I just had one of GTG's "EPIPHANIES"

Thanks again!
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GTG_AZH
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Poles and such

Post by GTG_AZH » Jun 03 2002 11:48 pm

I use a pair of the REI branded, Komperdell Ultra-Lights. I never thought I would really need them till I tried them. They are helpful for crossing creeks. With this drought and all you may have to go pretty far to find a wet creek.
wow...guess I just had one of GTG's "EPIPHANIES"
It's spreading around a bit I see.

GTG
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ck_1
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Post by ck_1 » Jun 05 2002 5:49 pm

Came across this site today, thought it might provide some info...

( 2018-08-28 dead link removed )
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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jun 05 2002 6:27 pm

Good site Colin. That is the technique. I sort of disagree that they get in the way when climbing. All you have to do is let them hang from your wrists and you can use your hands to climb with. Mine are very scarred up from doing this.
Glen

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MaryPhyl
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Post by MaryPhyl » Jun 05 2002 6:33 pm

Here comes the naysayer--I don't use poles. I think they are a business that interferes with striding out. If your pack is light you have no fear for your knees. If it is not, poles will not save them. For sure you can't dance with them :wink:

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evenstarx3
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Post by evenstarx3 » Jun 05 2002 6:49 pm

I use a single walking stick, a Tracks sherlight. Think I use the straps somewhat like Glen suggests. When I'm on level ground or smooth downhill, I just sort of toss it lightly out ahead of me, walk past it and then throw it out front again while just holding the grip lightly in my fingertips. When I reach a step up or down, I plant it and use it for both balance and to ease the stress on my legs, not just my knees, and while doing so, much of my weight is placed on the strap, not the grip.
Hooli, aka Trihairopelli
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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jun 05 2002 7:20 pm

MaryPhyl wrote:I don't use poles. I think they are a business that interferes with striding out. If your pack is light you have no fear for your knees. If it is not, poles will not save them.
Respecfully MaryPhyl, I strongly disagree. The poles will take up to 30% of the weight off of your legs and knees. In our steep rocky terrain, maybe even more in places. With a heavy pack you will reap incredible benifits. As for the stride, you have to learn how to use them. Your first time will seem very awkward but with practice they become extentions that are extra legs. What I'm saying is it takes a lot of miles to learn them well.

The man who I first saw using them was Reinhold Messner, the first man to climb Everest without oxygen and the first to do a lot of things that most folks can only dream of.

Personally I have found them to get me there and back faster and more gracefully with less leg muscle discomfort while working my upper body instead of just my legs. And yes you can dance up a hill like never before. Steep climbs become more routine.

I tend to go bushwacking quite a bit and they make a huge difference in my performance.

I wouldn't expect everyone to use them or like them and I know you are a very experienced hiker. Obviouly you have a method that works for you very well.
Glen

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ck_1
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Post by ck_1 » Jun 05 2002 7:25 pm

BoyNhisDog wrote: The man who I first saw using them was Reinhold Messner, the first man to climb Everest without oxygen and the first to do a lot of things that most folks can only dream of
what an understatement :!: Climbs the big E w/o o2, and is the first person to summit all the worlds peaks (14) above 8000 meters....now he's searching for the Yeti!

Ya know, Messner owns and lives in his own castle in Europe....Messner is an interesting figure..
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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jun 06 2002 6:06 am

Colin, didn't Messner summit two 8000 meter peaks in one day. I read one of his books a few years ago and he does march to a different drummer. If anyone can find that Yeti it will surely be him.
Glen

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Fritzski
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Post by Fritzski » Jun 06 2002 9:53 am

Colin, for the sweat problem on the hard plastic handles try wraping them with athletic tape. Sports Authority even has black to match the color.

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ck_1
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Post by ck_1 » Jun 06 2002 10:54 am

That's a good idea Fritzski...I was considering using handlebar tape for road bicycles...athletic tape would work just as well I think...thanks

Glen, I believe Messner did summit 2 in one day...the guy is a monster! You were polite in saying he marches to a different beat...I'd call him odd....but also considered a god of high alt. climbing..
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Snick33
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Treking poles

Post by Snick33 » Jun 06 2002 11:12 am

Whith my back being screwed up I've been using crutches instead of poles. Some days I feel like I'll be moving up to a walker.

I has back spasms at the Safeway last week and Patty tried to convience me to use one of those electric carts. I went into my: " Over MyDead Dead Body and Cold Cold Hands" routine until she walked away muttering.
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