By the end of the prior century, it was extremely old-fashioned, outdated, and called into question when people took to any hiking trails with a walking stick in hand. As ski poles became an increasingly common site on mountains around the world, it became less awkward and more acceptable. In fact, it became so acceptable and normal that hiking and backpacking supply manufacturers began investing more in the design, manufacture, and marketing of trekking poles.

Even so, yes, trekking poles from an untrained eye or at first glance will look very similar to ski poles. While they have much in common, the differences become apparent in the basket and tip. Because skis are typically used in snow, the ski pole always has a basket.

However, trekking poles, are made to have different types of tips that work with different types of topography. The handles of a trekking pole are often made of a nice, soft grip and usually have a secured wrist strap.

Trekking poles are often made in a few sections, and can fold up or telescope. They can usually be adjusted to serve hikers of different heights and also for differing terrains.

Better poles these days will have spring to absorb the shock to the wrists and the knees. This helps spread out the energy that would otherwise be fully absorbed by the individual’s joints.

Look for lightweight poles, because they need to be handled all day long and because they may have to be carried in a pack. For hikers and campers, the packing weight is a very substantial consideration when buying any supplies.

Typically, poles are made very lightweight, to collapse and break down for easy packing and usually contain carbon fiber or aluminum. This makes for strong poles that are also lightweight. They are often made to pack a suitcase, backpack, or even attach to the exterior of a backpack. This latter feature is a very useful option for backpackers who may want to or need to pack other items in their pack. They may need the space.

Back To Basics
These poles are not your great grandfather’s walking sticks, but they play many of the same roles, such as to maintain a walking clip that is unified. It provides additional support that may be required, especially on particularly difficult terrain, or on multi-day excursions where exhaustion can set into place easily.

What you may not have known is that hiking poles help hikers get better exercise from their efforts. Think about it in the following ways. They are not only employing their arms in the efforts to balance and keep moving, but they are also able to make progress at a steadier clip, which can keep them burning more calories. It can make people more confident and therefore able to go at a faster speed more readily.

Meanwhile, when traversing a new or unfamiliar terrain, the poles give a useful sense of support and lateral stability that can save the joints from added stressors. Rock climbers like having poles to help survey or evaluate the depth of mud, or the distance when having to jet across space.

As it turns out, the impact of poles can be a good deal of impact on the environment. For instance, 10 to 15% of all hikers hitting the Appalachian Trail are using hiking poles. This is significant because of the mark that people are leaving behind in their wake.

Take into consideration how you might benefit from these poles, and determine when you might need them. They help even to double as tent poles as well.