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Finally broke my wal-mart poles! What's the advantage of Le

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Finally broke my wal-mart poles! What's the advantage of Le

Postby trav867 » Wed Jul 16, 2008 6:07 pm

So, after 2 1/2 years, and close to 500 miles, I bent one of my aluminum "swiss gear" (wal-mart) trekking poles. I bought them to see if I liked hiking with poles, and had put off buying nicer ones because they worked so well. Finally, while hopping between granite boulders, one of my poles got lodged in a crack as I slipped. The pole probably saved me a sprained ankle as it flexed, then bent to a 90 degree angle. I actually was able to bend it back and use it for the rest of the trip, but it definitely needs replacing.

So do I go to wal-mart and buy another? or do I spend $100+ on some Lekis that do the same job. I don't totally understand the thinking behind carbon fiber poles- I'm sure they would have snapped in the situation I bent my aluminum one. I've never thought "gosh these poles are heavy on my arms," so I guess I'm wondering what I'm missing out on by using $10 aluminum poles.



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Re: Finally broke my wal-mart poles! What's the advantage of Le

Postby Snow Nymph » Wed Jul 16, 2008 7:39 pm

If it works for you, get another set! I broke my carbon fiber poles, but REI replaced them. When I fell in Convict Creek and watched my pole go over the cascades, it was pretty painful. I used a pair of old heavy poles til I broke down and got new ones ($140/pr). Then I lost the new carbon fiber poles after a month at a trailhead (more pain for my stupidity). I went back 2 wks later and they were gone. I'm small, so I notice the weight on my arms. There was a time I didn't know about lightweight poles and it didn't matter. Since I tried them, I got spoiled. If the $10 poles work, keep using them.
Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free . . . . Jim Morrison


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Re: Finally broke my wal-mart poles! What's the advantage of Le

Postby gary c. » Wed Jul 16, 2008 10:42 pm

If I covered the kind of ground that Snowy and some of the others on here do I might consider the high dollar poles. So far the WalMart poles are working just fine for me and if I lose or break one it won't bother me too much.
Gary C.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
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Re: Finally broke my wal-mart poles! What's the advantage of Le

Postby copeg » Thu Jul 17, 2008 6:54 am

I'm with Snowy on this one, do what works. Ive been using lightweight poles for years only, only last year that I purchased cf poles (they just felt better in my hands than any of the others).I did actually end up breaking one on the tail end of a trip last year, but it was replaced with no questions asked by REI
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Re: Finally broke my wal-mart poles! What's the advantage of Le

Postby maverick » Thu Jul 17, 2008 5:33 pm

Stick with what works for you. Ive had several types and if you bend them or get them
stuck between 2 rocks and torque them at a bad angle they will break or be
disfigured(as my Levi's are now) no matter what make they are.
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Re: Finally broke my wal-mart poles! What's the advantage of Le

Postby calipidder » Sun Jul 27, 2008 4:16 pm

I've owned cheap walmart poles, Lekis, and Black Diamonds, and absolutely swear by the Black Diamonds - they are worth their weight in gold. I've jammed them in holes coming down sierra passes and torqued the hell out of them, and they've never bent. There have been many times I've thought 'well, there go my poles' as I've put my entire body weight on them to save me from a twisted ankle or a fall, but they've been fine every time. Frankly I'm pretty shocked and very, very happy that they've survived the crap I've put them through.

The knock-offs and the Lekis - well, with the twist mechanism, I've found that they loosen a bit with every step (with each plant, they twist the tiniest bit, and eventually they collapse). Black diamond's locking mechanisms are more secure and I've never had one collapse on me.

If my black diamonds were lost or swept down a river, I wouldn't even flinch to spend the ~$130 to replace them. Like I said, worth their weight in gold.
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