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#6236687 - 02/29/12 Trekking Poles  
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ironbender Offline
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...
Anyone have/use Cascade Mountain Tech carbon fiber trekking poles?

Costco had them pretty cheap and wondering if they are durable at all?


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
CMG 300 BP

#6236718 - 02/29/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
#6236730 - 02/29/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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All depends on how much use/abuse you give them. I went through several off brand and lower cost pairs before I went exclusively to Leiki's year's ago. I now have 3 (maybe 4) pairs? I am particularly fond of an older pair of Leiki carbon Macula's that I've had for several years. light strong and they stay put with little twist force been the sections to set the length. I've used them for tent/tarp poles, meat poles, laid them across a small stream to cool meat, forging rivers, fishing poles, lean-to's, splint for a broken arm, etc. They are not cheap and the good ones average over $120/pair. I maintain them every year by taking them apart and cleaning them really good since they have moving friction fir parts that don't like dirt or oxidation very much. Go easy on the lower cost ones and they should do ok for you.


God Bless America!
#6239746 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: redfoxx]  
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I think I figured out the best of both worlds with some cheap Walmart flick-lock poles I modified. I have details on my blog, but for about $35 and some time, you can replace the heavy rubber handles and end up with a lightweight, durable set of poles that have the flick-locking mechanism - much better IMO than the twist lock.

#6240002 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: pka45]  
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In my experience, I've found the click locks to be faster and more convenient in adjusting the length of the poles and locking the sections in position, with the only down side being the extra bulk of the locking mechanism that sticks out proud of the poles tends to hang up on brush and tall grass. Kind of like if you don't take off the snow baskets off. I found that I ended up fighting the poles too much and went back to the twist lock. They also tend to get banged into things and crack at the most inopportune times. If you don't use the poles in heavy brush or high grass I would agree the click locks are better, but I do more times than not so the twist locks work better for my needs. To each his own...


God Bless America!
Alpha

#6240216 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: redfoxx]  
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I see some of the yuppie hikers dressed in the latest hiking fashion carrying them but I don't understand the purpose, it seems to just be herd mentality.

What are they for? Is there something I've missed in 35 years of backpacking without them?


Anyone who thinks there's two sides to everything hasn't met a M�bius strip.

Here be dragons ...
#6240309 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: T_O_M]  
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Originally Posted by T_O_M
I see some of the yuppie hikers dressed in the latest hiking fashion carrying them but I don't understand the purpose, it seems to just be herd mentality.

What are they for? Is there something I've missed in 35 years of backpacking without them?

I swore I wouldn't use them and they are rarely essential, but fooling around off trail with a backpack camp + boned out mulie I'm glad to have them. Improved balance is the primary benefit for me. I also carried them on a 33 hour 56 mile blitz in the Bob Marshall and they came in handy to take some pressure of of the feet near the end. One is good enough for some trips, and sometimes I leave them behind. My GG Lightrek 3's weigh 3.0 oz. per pole, so taking one along is a small weight penalty.

#6240346 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: T_O_M]  
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Originally Posted by T_O_M
I see some of the yuppie hikers dressed in the latest hiking fashion carrying them but I don't understand the purpose, it seems to just be herd mentality.

What are they for? Is there something I've missed in 35 years of backpacking without them?


Apparantly some of the terrain I've traversed is what you've missed.

Got a little test for ya:

Get yourself a 20in plyo box. Load 50# in your pack. Do ten step ups every minute (five each leg) using a pair of trekking poles for 15min.

Try it two days later without the poles and get back with us.

It's like the difference between doing a strict overhead press and a push press or a push jerk.

#6240387 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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If you've not used them then you're missing out on what I consider an essential part of my kit. When you have 100 lbs plus of boned out meat in your pack and have miles of up and down to cover, several times, in rocky/uneven terrain, they come in real handy and help save the knees and back. They have tons of other nifty uses as well if you get creative (tarp poles, stream crossings, etc). They are far worth the 2 extra pounds of weight in your hands considering they allow you to shift some of your total weigh to your upper body. I use them for the pack in and out when my pack is loaded down heavy with a bivy/spike camp, or when I'm packing out boned meat. I collapse them and strap them to my pack when I'm light or when I'm actively hunting. They are, in my opinion, a great tool. Check it out, you may find out what you've been missing!



God Bless America!
#6240393 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: T_O_M]  
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...
Balance on rough terrain and stream crossing.

Actually for a goat hunt I'd rather have an old style ice axe with a long shaft. Anyone have one to sell?


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
Bravo

#6240409 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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Originally Posted by ironbender
Balance on rough terrain and stream crossing.

Actually for a goat hunt I'd rather have an old style ice axe with a long shaft. Anyone have one to sell?


Yeah, hard to beat a good mountain axe. I always have mine, whether hunting brownies or moose or sheep or goat, or whatever. I outfit my clients with one and most end up using it before long. Some guys bring trekking poles and a few have liked those when on a hunt. But, when actually hunting, nothing seems to beat a good fitted ice/mountain axe.

#6240476 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Maverick940]  
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Mike, call Marc Taylor at Wiggys Alaska, 336-1330, I know he carries some ice axes that are extendable. He uses them and crampons when hunting goats.


That's ok, I'll ass shoot a dink.

Steelhead

#6240740 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: T_O_M]  
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Originally Posted by T_O_M
I see some of the yuppie hikers dressed in the latest hiking fashion carrying them but I don't understand the purpose, it seems to just be herd mentality.

What are they for? Is there something I've missed in 35 years of backpacking without them?


You must be a flatlander.

In the Cascades, with any pack over 20 lbs, they're a Godsend.


"Before all else, be armed." Niccolo Machiavelli
#6240753 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: AkMtnHntr]  
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ironbender Offline
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...
I hijacked my own thread. Dang!

Anyway, anyone used that brand of poles that Costco now has?

Impulse buy and now wondering if I should return them and go high zoot.


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
#6240886 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: David_Walter]  
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Originally Posted by David_Walter
Originally Posted by T_O_M
I see some of the yuppie hikers dressed in the latest hiking fashion carrying them but I don't understand the purpose, it seems to just be herd mentality.

What are they for? Is there something I've missed in 35 years of backpacking without them?


You must be a flatlander.

In the Cascades, with any pack over 20 lbs, they're a Godsend.

Flatlander .. perhaps, maybe.

Can you elaborate on "in the Cascades?" That's exactly where I've been hiking lately. Truth of the matter is, I find the Cascades to be easier than some of the coast range areas I used to hike.

My pack has been starting out at 45-50 pounds at the trailhead. Got some newer, lighter gear to try out this year. Knowing me, if I get down under about 35 I'll find something extra for ballast. smile

Tom


Anyone who thinks there's two sides to everything hasn't met a M�bius strip.

Here be dragons ...
#6241080 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: T_O_M]  
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When your descending down a very steep mountain with a load of meat and gear or crossing a scree field, trekking poles are worth their weight in gold. I always carry 1 and sometimes 2, I don't use it all the time but for the times when I do need it, I will have it with me. Your knee's will thank you for it.


That's ok, I'll ass shoot a dink.

Steelhead

#6241166 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: AkMtnHntr]  
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Originally Posted by AkMtnHntr
When your descending down a very steep mountain with a load of meat and gear or crossing a scree field, trekking poles are worth their weight in gold. I always carry 1 and sometimes 2, I don't use it all the time but for the times when I do need it, I will have it with me. Your knee's will thank you for it.


Forgot about that one. Eccentric contractions like a downhill descent are what do the most damage to muscles and tendons.

#6241457 - 03/01/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Take_a_knee]  
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Black Diamond "boundary" 2-piece ski poles are cheap and tough.

A pole's worst enemy is you, heavily loaded, on a moraine. If you stumble forward and your pole's in front of you wedged in a crack between rocks, it breaks. Two seasons ago I showed up at the airstrip with two stumps for poles, both of which broke a foot or so above the basket in similar incidents. The little stubai extendo-axes are vulnerable to the same. This year I took a 100cm ice axe by SMC and it was the tool of tools for walking, peace of mind on steep stuff (arresting), and for carving out campsites on moraine.

SMC is the only outfit I could find that would make one longer than 90cm, and they do it by special order only. They won't go longer than 100cm - I wanted 105 or 110. I was out a little over $100 for it, but I split shipping with a friend who got one as well.

What they need to do is market a "walking axe" that's not subject to whatever load ratings and specs that an ice axe is. Said walking axe would have a smaller pick and a less aggressive adze, as that would be a bit safer for carrying around the whole time. Offer them in 90, 100, and 110cm and I bet they'd sell.

#6243298 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Vek]  
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Originally Posted by Vek
Black Diamond "boundary" 2-piece ski poles are cheap and tough.

A pole's worst enemy is you, heavily loaded, on a moraine. If you stumble forward and your pole's in front of you wedged in a crack between rocks, it breaks. Two seasons ago I showed up at the airstrip with two stumps for poles, both of which broke a foot or so above the basket in similar incidents. The little stubai extendo-axes are vulnerable to the same. This year I took a 100cm ice axe by SMC and it was the tool of tools for walking, peace of mind on steep stuff (arresting), and for carving out campsites on moraine.

SMC is the only outfit I could find that would make one longer than 90cm, and they do it by special order only. They won't go longer than 100cm - I wanted 105 or 110. I was out a little over $100 for it, but I split shipping with a friend who got one as well.

What they need to do is market a "walking axe" that's not subject to whatever load ratings and specs that an ice axe is. Said walking axe would have a smaller pick and a less aggressive adze, as that would be a bit safer for carrying around the whole time. Offer them in 90, 100, and 110cm and I bet they'd sell.


Mont Blanc is where I got my 115. I think I paid 150.00 for it back in 1987. I'm sure they're quite a bit cheaper, nowadays. Back then an axe that size was a rare find and you could only get them out of Europe. Check Barney's. They used to carry Mont Blanc axes.

#6244965 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Maverick940]  
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Checked Barneys several times in the last couple years. Typically my question is something along the lines of "You guys got anyone who'll make a long axe? Black diamond won't do one for me, and SMC only goes to 100cm." Their replies gush too much about the petzl snowscopic and I have to suppress dry heaves....I get the impression that they're not trying too hard these days.




#6245009 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Vek]  
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...
Are you using an axe that long as a walking cane - sort of?

That's a damn long axe! Are you wicked tall?

the one I borrowed and used a couple years ago was used primarily for assistance ascending steep mossy slopes that were more like a wall than anything. That, and trenching to keep the high spot the tent was on from getting flooded. crazy


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
#6245400 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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The applications for trekking poles and ice axes in my opinion are quite different with the ice axe being a very specialized piece of equipment required mostly in extreme alpine/high elevation environments. An ice axe is a tool that is a bit more applicable in situations where ice, glacier crossings, extremely steep/slick rock, or self-arrest potential are likely. The trekking pole on the other hand is more of a mobility tool where steep and uneven terrain, long mileage and heavy loads are likely to be encountered. Having said that, there are some instances where an ice axe can be used instead of trekking pole(s) but those in my experience are few and far between. They are two different tools for two different jobs. Now before someone gets offend and flames me, I've used both extensively so I'm qualified to make the observations I'm making having used both over many years.


God Bless America!
#6245646 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: redfoxx]  
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...
I pretty much agree, however the situation I referred to above, poles would have been useless and certainly would have broken the way the axe was used.


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
#6245870 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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Originally Posted by ironbender
Are you using an axe that long as a walking cane - sort of?

That's a damn long axe! Are you wicked tall?

the one I borrowed and used a couple years ago was used primarily for assistance ascending steep mossy slopes that were more like a wall than anything. That, and trenching to keep the high spot the tent was on from getting flooded. crazy


Yeah, I'm wicked tall. Thus the reason for the long shaft. I use mine for all sorts of applications; stability, fording, balance, self arrest, cutting steps in ice/snow, trenching, burying human waste when hunting truly huge and quite wary coastal brown bear, turning ears, skinning toes, shooting rest, prop for my external-frame pack to rest against when glassing for hours and hours and hours and hours - the list is endless.

#6246603 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Maverick940]  
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...
I was asking Vek, but thanks.


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
#6246629 - 03/02/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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Hiking on steep areas , side hills with loose wet rocks, shale, steeps area of ice and snow, blowdowns. Especially with elk, deer quarters.

Hiking poles have proven to be a god send in my40's.

I like the flip locks.

#6246945 - 03/03/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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Originally Posted by ironbender
I was asking Vek, but thanks.


No problem.

#6247402 - 03/03/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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For woods walking, brook crossing and some downhill when carrying a gun and maybe a backpack I pick up a stick from the ground.

Just some stick lying there is enough for me and it's easy to find and then discard.

See that skinny stick poked into the ground between the stump and the sapling! Something like that.

Easy.

[Linked Image]


That the first shot from it's cold barrel from my C.F. hunting rifles hit where I want it at 200 yds is more important to me that what groups it may shoot at 100 yds!

My match rifles must shoot groups. We get sighting shots at matches!
#6250021 - 03/03/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: redfoxx]  
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A short alpine axe is weight in the pack for everything except negotiating a steep slope.

A long axe is a cane on the flat, an unbendable/unbreakable assist on a moraine, a step-cutter on the short ice slope when you don't want to stop and dismount to put on crampons, and an arresting tool on terrain where a fast slide/fall/tumble means debilitating injury or death. It's a compromise versus a short axe on the steep - the long axe will fatigue the uphill arm a bit, but we're not scaling K2 here. I'm not willing to carry a short axe.

Dragging my sorry behind to the airstrip with two poles broke off shorter than long axe length colored my opinion of walking aids in glacier country. The poles were great. Until they broke. Then the aluminum stubs slipped off every rock and generally sucked.

This year I carried a pole and the axe. I used both on the moraine at the same time, and just the axe on the steeps where you'd want the ability to arrest. Worked like a freaking champ.

Originally Posted by redfoxx
The applications for trekking poles and ice axes in my opinion are quite different with the ice axe being a very specialized piece of equipment required mostly in extreme alpine/high elevation environments. An ice axe is a tool that is a bit more applicable in situations where ice, glacier crossings, extremely steep/slick rock, or self-arrest potential are likely. The trekking pole on the other hand is more of a mobility tool where steep and uneven terrain, long mileage and heavy loads are likely to be encountered. Having said that, there are some instances where an ice axe can be used instead of trekking pole(s) but those in my experience are few and far between. They are two different tools for two different jobs. Now before someone gets offend and flames me, I've used both extensively so I'm qualified to make the observations I'm making having used both over many years.

#6250023 - 03/03/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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Vek is not quite 6'3, so he's no giant.

#6250033 - 03/03/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Vek]  
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In the shadow of the Kenai Mtn...
Thanks for the response. That confirms what I was thinking. I don't know the length that was used before, but was probably 90 or 95.


If you take the time it takes, it takes less time.
--Pat Parelli

American by birth; Alaskan by choice.
--ironbender
#6255647 - 03/05/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: ironbender]  
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That's ok, I'll ass shoot a dink.

Steelhead

#6261208 - 03/06/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: Vek]  
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TOM, no kidding I felt just as you do for 40 years. I'll spend the rest of my life hiking with trekking poles. They are that good. It's like taking 25% off your back and improving stability exponentially. In rough steep country they cannot be beat.


I do not entertain hypotheticals. The world itself is vexing enough. -- Col. Stonehill
#6266388 - 03/08/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: T_O_M]  
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Originally Posted by T_O_M
Originally Posted by David_Walter
Originally Posted by T_O_M
I see some of the yuppie hikers dressed in the latest hiking fashion carrying them but I don't understand the purpose, it seems to just be herd mentality.

What are they for? Is there something I've missed in 35 years of backpacking without them?


You must be a flatlander.

In the Cascades, with any pack over 20 lbs, they're a Godsend.

Flatlander .. perhaps, maybe.

Can you elaborate on "in the Cascades?" That's exactly where I've been hiking lately. Truth of the matter is, I find the Cascades to be easier than some of the coast range areas I used to hike.

My pack has been starting out at 45-50 pounds at the trailhead. Got some newer, lighter gear to try out this year. Knowing me, if I get down under about 35 I'll find something extra for ballast. smile

Tom


Have you bee up Asgard Pass near Leavenworth? Or more importantly, down? I had a heavy pack, heavier than I should have taken, and the poles were necessary for safe decent.


"Before all else, be armed." Niccolo Machiavelli
#6266404 - 03/08/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: David_Walter]  
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I have an use one of these when I think there may be snow in the plan: Black Diamond - Whippet Self-Arrest Ski Pole

Works for me.

Any feed back on Leki poles for treking?


"Before all else, be armed." Niccolo Machiavelli
#6266468 - 03/08/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: David_Walter]  
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Leki Makalu's are what we use when sheep hunting, I keep at least 1 in my pack at all times. These are solid poles and when adjusted to the proper length for me they stay locked in place.


That's ok, I'll ass shoot a dink.

Steelhead

#6267407 - 03/08/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: AkMtnHntr]  
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Posts: 289
Montana Territory
Ok, maybe just because I am a cheap SOB, but I have never spent over $5 (usually $3) just picking up some good quality ski poles at thrift stores or yard sales. They work great and if damaged (very rare) are easily replaced. I actually leave a set in my truck and have more in the garage. Just a thought!


"The difference between adventure and disaster is preparation"
"Dangerous Game Hunting........because golf, football and baseball only require one ball"
#6270885 - 03/09/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: JCS271]  
Joined: Jan 2001
Posts: 19,562
458 Lott Offline
Campfire Kahuna
458 Lott  Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Joined: Jan 2001
Posts: 19,562
Conundrum, Alaska
I've got bum knees, trecking poles are a godsend.

Can't comment on the costco poles, but costco is great about returns when you break stuff smile

My first pair of trecking poles were a cheap pair that I bent the first time out in less than an hour. Then I got a pair of BD trecking poles and it took me several years to bend them. About 20 miles in Crow Creak I slipped on an off camber patch of mud, managed to save myself with a pole plant but bent it pretty badly. I was able to straighten it out without any cracks or stress marks, though it doesn't quite fully retract now.

I wouldn't go with carbon fiber, they are slightly lighter but they won't bend when over stressed, they'll shatter. Also using them in rocky terrain will nick them up which will lead to them failing.


45 Trumps 44, MAGA

Alaska Bush People are neither
#6271022 - 03/09/12 Re: Trekking Poles [Re: 458 Lott]  
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 17,874
AkMtnHntr Offline
Campfire Kahuna
AkMtnHntr  Offline
Campfire Kahuna

Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 17,874
Alaska
The problem with ski poles is that they are not adjustable and being able to adjust your trekkers is a must. I encounter all kinds of different situations when I use mine, creek crossings, side hilling, climbing, walking downhill. Being able to adjust it makes it so much easier for those given situations.


That's ok, I'll ass shoot a dink.

Steelhead

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