Whether you are day hiking through your favorite urban trails or traversing through canyons and valleys for a month-long hike, trekking poles can help you stay on track, boost your speed, and provide support and balance during those daunting uphill climbs.
If you haven't used them before or aren’t familiar with their features, don’t worry. In the following guide, we tell you everything you need to know to help you find a pair of trekking poles that are right for you. We also gone ahead and reviewed 11 of them. Read on to find out our pick of the best trekking poles for your next adventure.
Trekking Poles FAQ
1. What Is a Trekking Pole?
A trekking pole is a type of hiking accessory designed to provide stability, support, and balance.
2. What Does a Trekking Pole Do?
A trekking pole is lightweight accessories that provide added stability, support, and balance for hikers.
3. How Does a Trekking Pole Work?
A trekking pole typically features a sturdy shaft construction made out of aluminum and/or carbon fiber. It is generally lightweight and has grips made out of foam or cork for secure grips. Some poles also feature grip straps for even greater security and comfort. At the other end of the poles are durable tips that can dig into the terrain to provide balance and support.
During hikes, the user pushes the poles into the surface in front of them with each step, and push off the surface with each step forward. Whether you are hiking on flat surfaces or uphill, trekking poles can also help you increase your speed.
4. Where Can You Buy a Trekking Pole?
You can buy a trekking pole at your local sporting goods store or online at Amazon.com.
How We Reviewed
The following products were reviewed based on the following parameters: Features, Pros & Cons, Price, Where to Buy, and Type. We were mainly concerned with the poles’ length, shaft material, grip material, type of locking mechanism, ease of use, and portability. Most, if not all, of the poles are made with sturdy aluminum and/or carbon fiber materials. For ease of use, we were particularly concerned with how easy it is to adjust the height of the poles.
Overall Price Range of This Product (and Similar Products)
Trekking poles range in price from around $30 to $150. Pricier poles feature more durable construction, have greater portability, more advanced locking mechanisms, and are backed by reliable brands.
What We Reviewed
The Black Diamond Distance Carbon Z Trekking Poles are made with 100% carbon fiber construction and feature an added aluminum ring for even greater protection. These poles feature a three-section foldable design that is easy to carry and transport. Weighing at only 9 ounces, these poles can be deployed easily with its speed-cone deployment feature. Finally, these poles feature comfortable grips made out of EVA foam and lightweight tech tips made out of non-scarring rubber. Choose from 4 sizes to fit your height.
LEKI Micro Vario Ti COR-TEC Poles
The LEKI Micro Vario Ti COR-TEC Poles are foldable poles measuring 4-inches high and 6-inches wide. Featuring the New SpeedLock 2, these poles are 33% smaller, 20% stronger, and 25% lighter than its previous model. Constructed with a micro folding pole construction, these poles are ready to use with a push of a button designed to release the poles in just a few seconds. What’s more, these poles come equipped with LEKI’s best-selling COR-TEC grips for greater comfort and support.
Black Diamond Trail Poles
The Black Diamond Trail Poles feature a dual-density grip top and 360-degree padded webbing straps for added comfort and greater ease of carrying. Measuring at 2.25-inches high and 4-inches wide, these poles also feature non-slip foam grip extensions that are designed for long-distance use. Meanwhile, the double flick locks ensure that the poles remain in position throughout your hike. For the tips, they are made out of interchangeable carbide tech materials for added durability.
Montem Ultra-Strong Poles
- 【EASILY ADJUSTED】Adjustable bolts allow you to QUICKLY & EASILY lengthen the poles from 24" to 53" in order to...
- 【FREE LIFETIME REPLACEMENT PROMISE】We at Montem promise to replace your poles for life. Shop the most trusted brand...
- 【ULTRA STRONG & LIGHT 】Montem trekking poles weigh only 9.6 ounces per pole so you don't feel weighed down - you've...
The Montem Ultra-Strong Poles feature adjustable bolts that allow you to effortlessly and quickly adjust the height of your poles from 24 inches to up to 53 inches. Weighing at only 9.6 ounces, these poles are lightweight enough to be used for long distance adventures. Built out of aluminum 7075 airplane-grade materials, these poles feature a durable design at a compact size. What’s more, these poles come equipped with nylon straps for added safety and ease of use.
LEKI Legacy Poles
- PA Safety Thermo grip for warmer hands including easily adjustable strap with safety release
- Reinforced strap with convenient fleece lining for pleasant wear comfort
- Speed Lock 2: Extremely fast adjustment of the pole length. 30% smaller, 25% lighter and 20% higher holding force - at...
The LEKI Legacy Poles measure 4 inches high and 5 inches wide. Featuring the New SpeedLock 2 mechanism that can support up to 120 pounds, these poles are designed to be 33% more compact, 25% more lightweight, and 20% more durable than the leading poles. Featuring a performance basket and carbide tips, these poles are also lightweight and easy to carry. Finally, these poles are constructed with aluminum materials and feature rubber grips.
Mountainsmith Halite 7075
The Mountainsmith Halite 7075 features cork and EVA foam handles and a four collapsible sectional design for easy carrying. These poles also feature an outer lock height adjustment mechanism for customizable height adjustments and to secure the poles firmly in place during use. Strengthened with vinyl coated steel cables, these aluminum poles are designed to handle both long and short distance hikes.
LEKI Corklite Trekking Poles
The LEKI Corklite Trekking Poles are built with aluminum materials for their shaft and AERGON Cor-Tec materials for their grips. Measuring at 2 inches high and 4 inches wide, these lightweight poles also feature an Ultra Sonic Finish for added durability. Finally, these poles can be adjusted between 26 inches and 53 inches, making them suitable for users of all heights.
Kelty Upslope 2.0 Trekking Poles
- GREAT FOR EVERYBODY - Our hiking poles were designed with the beginner & experienced hiker in mind. They are affordable...
- NEW & IMPROVED - We have upgraded our hiking poles with more comfortable grips and padded wrist straps for added comfort...
- GREAT FEATURES - Each pole can extend in length from Approx. 25.5" up to 52", allowing the poles to be great for people...
The Kelty Upslope 2.0 Trekking Poles are built from sturdy 6061 aluminum materials and feature extended EVA foam grips for added comfort and security. These poles also feature a three section telescoping design for greater portability and compactness. Featuring a lightweight design, these poles can be easily adjusted between 25.5 inches to 53 inches in height. Meanwhile, 2 twist locks ensure that each section of the poles is securely locked in place during use.
Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Cork Poles
- Premium cork grip with dual-density top and adjustable 360-degree sewn strap
- Non-slip EVA foam grip extension. Weight Per Pair : 475 g (1lb 1 oz)
- 3 section 100% carbon fiber shaft
The Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Cork Poles feature a three-section telescoping design and a 100% carbon fiber shaft construction. These poles also feature premium cork grips with a 360-degree sewn strap for added security and comfort. With its Dual Flick Lock Pro mechanism, these poles can adjust in height from 25 inches to up to 51 inches. With a collapsed length of 25 inches, these poles also feature interchangeable carbide tech tips for even greater durability.
Cascade Mountain Tech CF Poles
- HIGH QUALITY STRONG VALUE - Poles are built with 100% CARBON FIBER - We source quality material and buy in bulk...
- LIGHT WEIGHT & COMPACT POLES - 7.8 oz or LESS THAN a pound - Our carbon fiber poles provide hikers, walkers, back...
- QUICK LOCK & EXTENDABLE: Need to adjust your pole height when trekking up a hill, or a downward slope? Our quick lock...
Cascade Mountain Tech CF Poles feature a telescoping design and a 100% carbon fiber construction. Weighing at 7.8 ounces per pole, these lightweight and compact poles can also be quickly extended and retracted for uphill and downhill use. What’s more, they feature cork grip handles that provide top of the line comfort without absorbing sweat and moisture.
After reviewing all 11 products based on the five parameters, we are confident that The Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Cork Poles are the best trekking poles available on the market today. Featuring carbon fiber and aluminum shafts and a dual-density top and natural cork grips, these poles are ideal for tackling a wide variety of terrain.
What’s more, these poles feature Black Diamond’s latest Dual FlickLock Pro locking mechanism to securely position your poles in place without buckling under pressure. Meanwhile, the foam handles and padded hand loops deliver lasting comfort and grip that is unmatched with other poles.
For an affordable price, these poles are suitable for use for hikers of all levels. Whether you are planning a day hike or long distance adventure to reach great heights, these poles live up to their claims as the best on the market today.