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Best budget trekking poles

Budget trekking poles

Trekking poles are becoming an essential part of everyone’s kit. On top of the well known benefits to knees and other joints, trekking poles can improve your walking posture (providing you use them correctly), help you maintain an even pace and provide stability on tricky sections of the trail.

There is another benefit to using trekking poles that is increasing their uptake. Nowadays, there are many tents that don’t come with traditional tent poles and instead simply use trekking poles to support the tent. For wild-campers and backpackers there’s an obvious advantage to this as they no longer need to lug around tent poles, and instead just erect the tent with their trekking poles. We have discussed some of these tents previously – check out our Six Moon Designs Skyscape Scout vs Trekker article and our 3F UL Lanshan 1 Pro and 3F UL Lanshan 2 Pro spec comparison.

As with most types of outdoor gear, there is a bewildering range of trekking poles to choose from and people can spend hours clicking back and forth between websites and products trying to compare the differences. We are going to try and help by comparing some of the most popular and best budget trekking poles that are available. If you are willing to try one of these lesser known brands, then there are some good savings to be made, and, judging by the reviews, the quality of the poles we have included is excellent.

How to use trekking poles correctly

There are a bunch of really useful articles and videos already that give great advice on how to use trekking poles correctly, so we’re not going to reinvent the wheel here. Instead, check out this How to Choose and Use Trekking Poles guide from Rei or simply Google something like “how to use trekking poles correctly”. Alternatively you could check out the advice given by YouTubers.

Take care when using trekking poles

Over the years we have seen numerous people scrambling up to a summit with their poles clanking about, hanging from their wrists. This is really dangerous – they can cause you to trip, stick in you, cause you to lose focus and just generally get in the way. If you need your hands for a scramble stop and put your poles away properly… get the scramble out of the way, then get your poles back out again if you need to.

Difference between aluminium and carbon trekking poles

  • Aluminium trekking poles – heavier, cheaper
  • Carbon fiber trekking poles – lighter, more expensive

Budget trekking poles are generally made from aluminium as it’s cheaper, however there are now some really good carbon fiber budget poles available too. Aluminium trekking poles tend to be more durable than carbon trekking poles – whilst carbon trekking poles tend to be lighter.

In this comparison we have included some trekking poles made from aluminium and some made from carbon fiber. The brands we have included are TrailBuddy, TheFitLife, Trekology, Cascade Mountain Tech and Naturehike… and they are listed in no particular order.

Best budget trekking poles – spec comparison

TrailBuddy Trekking Poles

TrailBuddy Trekking Poles

Material:
7075 aluminium

Handle material:
Cork

Weight:
9.7oz (275g) per pole without accessories. With the baskets and rubber tips, it’ll be 10.2oz (289g) per pole.

Lengths:
24.5”-54″ (62cm-137cm)

Locking mechanism:
Flip lock

Price:
CHECK PRICE – AMAZON


TheFitLife Trekking Poles

TheFitLife Trekking Poles

Material:
6 series aluminium

Handle material:
EVA foam

Weight:
270g (9.5oz)

Lengths:
Full Length: 51 Inch (130cm) / Closed Length: 25.6 Inch (65cm)

Locking mechanism:
Twist lock

Price:
CHECK PRICE – AMAZON


Trekology Trek-Z Trekking Poles

Trekology Trek-Z Trekking Poles

Material:
7075 aluminium

Handle material:
EVA foam or cork

Weight:
EVA foam handles: 294g (10.4oz) for 100cm-120cm poles and 306g (10.8oz) for 115-135cm
Cork handles: 330g Note: the breakdown for each pole length isn’t given by Trekology.

Lengths:
2 lengths available: 100-120cm (person who is 5’8″ or shorter) or 115-135cm (person who is 5’9″ or taller)
Note: As usual with Trekology product listings there are discrepancies in the specs given – both on their Amazon pages and even on their own website. Some listings state the poles’ shorter lengths are 100-120cm but then you’ll also read 100-125cm. Similarly you’ll see the longer length poles stated as both 110-135cm and 115-135cm. If the exact lengths matter to you then please check carefully before you buy.

Locking mechanism:
Flip lock

Price:
EVA foam handles: CHECK PRICE – AMAZON
Cork handles: CHECK PRICE – AMAZON


Cascade Mountain Tech Trekking Poles

Cascade Mountain Tech Trekking Poles

Material:
Aluminium

Handle material:
Cork and EVA foam

Weight:
10.4oz (295g)

Lengths:
26”- 54” (66cm – 137cm)

Locking mechanism:
Flip lock

Price:
CHECK PRICE – AMAZON


Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles

Cascade Mountain Tech Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles

Material:
Carbon fiber

Handle material:
Cork and EVA foam

Weight:

  1. 8oz (221g)

Lengths:
26”- 54” (66cm – 137cm)

Locking mechanism:
Flip lock

Price:
CHECK PRICE – AMAZON


TheFitLife Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles

TheFitLife Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles

Material:
Carbon fiber

Handle material:
Cork and EVA foam

Weight:
7.05oz (200g)

Lengths:
24″ (62cm) – 53″ (135cm)

Locking mechanism:
Flip lock

Price:
CHECK PRICE – AMAZON


Naturehike Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles

Naturehike Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles

Material:
Carbon Fiber

Handle material:
EVA foam

Weight:
7oz (198g)

Lengths:
24″ (62cm) to 53″(135cm)

Locking mechanism:
Flip lock

Price:
CHECK PRICE – AMAZON

So there you go – our comparison of the best budget trekking poles. The carbon fiber poles are the lightest, so if saving weight is important to you then check those out – they are a great price for carbon fiber poles.

If you have any experience of using any of these trekking poles please leave a comment below.

Since you’re obviously interested in budget, good quality gear, have you seen our articles on budget tents? For example, Naturehike also make highly regarded budget lightweight tents too. Check out our articles: Naturehike Cloud Up 1 vs 2 and Naturehike Cloud Up vs Cloud Peak vs Mongar for examples of their tents.

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Disclaimer

The specs in our articles have been compiled on a best effort basis from research on the manufacturers’ own websites, and on other websites selling the products. We do not guarantee the data we have given is correct and cannot be held responsible for incorrect information. Always do your own spec checks before making a purchase.