Top Hiking Poles and Trekking Poles in Pairs

Hiking and trekking poles can be used in two ways. First, using poles you take strain off of knees and ankles and give yourself more balance. Second, you work the upper body to burn more calories per mile, while actually feeling like you are exerting yourself less. Burn more, feel less. Using the right technique is essential, and these poles come with instructions. As with shoes, which pole is best in an individual choice. The following poles are all of good quality.

1
Leki Trail Trekking Poles

Leki Trail Trekking Poles
Leki Trail Trekking Poles. Courtesy of Pricegrabber

These 3-section poles can be adjusted for height - to share them or to modify for up and downhill trekking. The positive angle grips are comfortable. They telescope down small enough to pack in a suitcase for travel. I bought a pair to see me through a mountain walking vacation and it was money well spent to provide stability on the trail. They have removable snow or trail baskets. Buy from Amazon »

2
Black Diamond Trail Back Trekking Poles

Black Diamond Trail Back Trekking Poles
Black Diamond Trail Back Trekking Poles. Courtesy of Amazon.com

These basic 3-section poles telescope down to 25 inches for packing. They have non-slip rubber grips and the strap has padded webbing for comfort. They have a FlickLock adjustment system that allows you to securely change the height of the pole. Buy from Amazon »

3
Exerstrider OS2 Fitness Trekker

Exerstrider OS2 Fitness Trekker Poles
Exerstrider OS2 Fitness Trekker Poles. Wendy Bumgardner ©

These two-piece telescoping aluminum alloy fitness walking poles compact down to 31" for travel. They fit any user from heights of 3'11" to 6'2". The paw tip is perfect for street or sidewalk use. These poles come with an Exerstrider instructional video and manual. The OS2 were finalists for the Readers' Choice Award for Fitness Walking Poles in 2013 and 2012. Buy from Amazon »

4
Leki Micro Vario Ti

Leki Micro Vario Ti Trekking Poles
Leki Micro Vario Ti Trekking Poles. Courtesy of Pricegrabber

These poles are great for travel and packing because they pack down to only 15 inches in length. They do this by disassembling into three sections, connected by a shock cord so you won't lose any sections. The poles also are adjustable in height from 110 to 130 centimeters with a speedlock adjustment system. The handle is designed so you can use a variety of grips to hold it, and has an adjustable strap.
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5
PaceMaker Journey Stix

Pacemaker Stix Journey Poles
Pacemaker Stix Journey Poles. Pacemaker Stix

PaceMaker Journey Stix telescope from 24.5 - 54 inches and extend with a twist lock mechanism. They have an anti-shock version (AS) if you find using poles to be a jarring experience, although that adds a slight extra weight to the poles. They come with both snow baskets and dust/sand baskets and a vulcanized rubber paw. The price is excellent - under $50. Buy from Amazon »

6
Exerstrider TR3 Traveler 25-Inch Telescoping Poles

Exerstrider TR3 Traveler Gold Edition 25-Inch Poles
Exerstrider TR3 Traveler Gold Edition 25-Inch Poles. Wendy Bumgardner © 2013

When you want to take your poles along on a trip, you want a pair that will fit into your luggage. The TR3 is made in three segments and they telescope down to 25 inches. They have hand markings on one of the segments for height adjustment in both English and metric units. The ergonomic handgrips are beefy. I love the clear markings on top as to which is left and which is right and what direction they should be facing. They come with trekking baskets and snow baskets, so you can use them for snowshoeing as well as hiking. They have a cushion boot for pavement and a carbide tip to bite into the surface.
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7
REI Traverse Trekking Poles

REI Traverse Trekking Poles
REI Traverse Trekking Poles. Pricegrabber ©

REI is a name I trust for outdoor gear. This is their store brand of trekking poles and come at a value price for the regular version, which is also available in a junior version for youth. They are 3-section adjustable poles that collapse down to 27.2 inches for packing. More »

8
PaceMaker Expedition Stix

PaceMaker Stix Expedition Trekking Poles
PaceMaker Stix Expedition Trekking Poles. Wendy Bumgarnder ©

PaceMaker Stix Expedition Poles telescope from 27 - 54 inches and have a flip-lock mechanism that some people prefer to the twist-lock. That is especially true when you are wearing gloves. Customers who walked the full Camino de Santiago with them give a glowing review. They are under $60 - a great value. They come with snow baskets, trail baskets and a vulcanized rubber paw. Buy from Amazon »

9
REI Carbon PowerLock Trekking Poles

REI Carbon PowerLock Trekking Poles
REI Carbon PowerLock Trekking Poles. Courtesy of REI

These poles are made with lightweight but strong carbon fiber. The carbon fiber damps vibration and doesn't go through the same expansion and contraction that metal poles do in different temperature conditions. They have padded wrist straps as well as a foam-padded grips. The poles contract to 27.5 inches for travel, and have an external lever lock mechanism. They come with trekking disks and snow baskets but do not have a rubber paw to cover the carbide tip for use on pavement. More »

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