User Review: Gossamer Gear Lightrek 4
Price Paid: $160
This is the collapsible version of the Gossamer Gear Lightrek 3 poles and aside from the weight -- the 4's weigh a half oz. more than the 3's -- there isn't a lot of difference between the two. Both are made of ultralight graphite fiber composite.
These poles are so light that you'll never get over how light they are. What sets one collapsible pole apart from another is grip comfort, strength, ease of adjustment and weight.
When it comes to weight, other collapsible poles don't come close to these. They weigh 3.4 oz. each! The amazing thing is, this doesn't appear to come as a result of a compromise with strength. I put a lot of weight on them especially on steep, rocky descents and they take it.
As far as comfort goes, they're winners. The soft grips keep discomfort and fatigue to a minimum. When I'm descending, I usually have the top of the grip against my palm the way I'd use a cane to support my weight. The wide soft top distributes the load across my hand for maximum comfort.
The adjustment locking is of the twist-to-tighten variety. I much prefer a lever lock for speed and reliability, but at Gossamer Gear, weight gets priority and the levers add weight. That said, I've found that once locked, they stay locked so it hasn't been a problem. I don't use my poles to hold up a tent so I'm not adjusting them twice a day, just at the beginning and end of the trip. The first time I used these poles, one pole wouldn't lock. I slipped the bottom section out and tightened the adjuster about a quarter turn, expanding it enough to grab the top section. I haven't experienced a recurrence.