Sturdy, relatively inexpensive, adjustable hiking…
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: Around $70
Sturdy, relatively inexpensive, adjustable hiking poles, which are great for the beginning backpacker. Can be difficult to adjust and does not necessarily have a comfortable grip.
- Sturdy once adjusted
- Lower price compared to other brands
- Difficult to adjust
- Uncomfortable plastic handles
- No shock absorbency
These were my first pair of trekking poles. Because I was a college student, price was a large factor in my decision. They are adjustable by turning a twist-lock mechanism but sometimes it gets stuck and can be hard to adjust. They came with a few different accessories or baskets that could be snapped onto the bottom, but I never used them.
The wrist straps were a good size and stayed put without any rubbing. The grip was made of hard plastic however, and could be uncomfortable at the end of a long hiking day. The traction of the poles was excellent and I never had any issues with slipping on wet terrain, even when hiking in the rain on slippery rocks. Other than the stubborn locking system, the poles were well made and lightweight.
I had them for 7 years before one of them finally met its demise. My friend was using one of my poles on the wet descent off Blood Mountain in Georgia. She slipped and the pole got caught between some rocks and snapped in half. Better the pole than one of her bones!! The remaining pole is still in great condition and I use it on a regular basis, but will be purchasing another pair in the near future so that I have a backup pole.
One of the main downfalls of these poles is that they have no shock absorbency, so if you hit them on something hard you may feel it in your arm. I have always been impressed with the quality of the REI brand gear and would consider getting their brand in the future. One feature I would look for, though, is a handle made from cork since it is much for forgiving on your hands. I would also prefer to have trekking poles with shock absorbency and a different locking system.