Man and woman using hiking poles in forest with text overlay 7 Best Trekking Poles
Hiking Gear

Best Trekking Poles of 2021

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The 7 Best Trekking Poles

Trekking poles offer a variety of benefits when you’re on the trail. Not only do they provide excellent stability when you’re trying to navigate difficult terrain, but they can also help you set a rhythm, let you test the depth of water before trying to cross, and help reduce impact on your ankles, knees, and hips.

If you’re ready to pick up your next set of hiking poles but you’re not sure which ones are right for you, check out this guide on the best trekking poles for every type of hiker.

Related: Not Sure What to Bring on a Hike? Always Pack These 10 Essentials!

1. Best Trekking Poles for Women

These Black Diamond Women’s Distance FLZ trekking poles poles strike the perfect balance between lightweight and durable. The EVA foam grip will feel great in your hands, and the breathable, moisture-wicking straps help keep the poles secure.

The adjustable length makes it easy to find the size you need, and the SlideLock technology makes it simple to collapse your poles when you’re done with your hike. However, the best feature of these poles is the fact that they weigh next to nothing and they break down easily into an incredibly small size.

Related: The Best Hiking Pants for Women

2. Best Trekking Pole for Men

Once you start using these Leki Micro Vario Carbon poles, you’ll quickly see why hikers rave about them. The features you’ll love include an incredibly comfortable foam grip, secure locking mechanisms, plenty of length adjustments, and compact size when you fold them down.

Since the poles are made of carbon, they effortlessly absorb shock while remaining strong and durable. You’ll also appreciate that these poles have an interchangeable basket system that lets you easily screw on different sized baskets depending on the weather and trail conditions.

Related: The Best Hiking Boots for Men

3. Best Trekking Poles on a Budget

Broken hiking poles will do you absolutely no good. But that doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune to get a good set of poles. If you’re looking for a decent pair of affordable trekking poles, check out these Cascade Mountain Tech poles.

Related: The Best Budget-Friendly Hiking Backpack

While these poles aren’t designed for serious hikers tackling some of the roughest terrain out there, they are cheap trekking poles that have all the features beginner or occasional hikers need. The poles have both a cork grip and an EVA foam grip that are comfortable and help wick away sweat.

They also come with boot tips, rubber tips, snow baskets, and mud baskets to help you handle all types of trail conditions. Plus, although they weigh less than a pound, they’re strong and durable.

Related: How to Stay Dry Hiking in the Rain

4. Most Durable Trekking Poles

Whether you frequently hike on rocky terrain, or you’re simply hard on your gear, the Black Diamond Trail Ergo Cork trekking poles are the ideal option if you need something that can take some abuse and keep on going. These poles have an aluminum shaft that’s strong and sturdy.

They also offer the best of both worlds with a comfortable 100% natural cork grip and EVA foam grip extension. The four-season flex tips come with trekking baskets, but they’re also compatible with snow baskets for those cold-weather hikes.

Related: Essential Survival Gear Every Hiker Should Carry

5. Best Lightweight Trekking Poles

If you’re serious about traveling as light as possible when you hike, the Gossamer Gear LT5 trekking poles are for you. These carbon fiber hiking poles weigh in at a mere 5 ounces each! They feature carbide tips and an incredibly comfortable EVA foam handle.

Since the poles are adjustable, they can even pull double duty by helping you set up your tent, tarp, or other type of shelter, which means one less thing you have to carry when you hike!

Related: How to Prevent Blisters When Hiking

6. Best Trekking Poles for Winter

Most of the trekking poles on this list are intended for use in mild weather conditions. However, if you know you’ll be dealing with some significant snow accumulation on your hike, you’ll definitely need a set of poles that can handle the conditions. The MSR DynaLock Ascent Carbon poles are the best hiking poles for winter because they’re made from Kevlar-reinforced carbon fiber that’s incredibly tough and sturdy.

Related: Must-Know Tips for Hiking in Winter

In addition to summer baskets, they also include wider winter baskets that help keep your poles above powdery snow. Plus, the collapsible construction means the poles will pack down small, and their lightweight design won’t add a ton of extra weight to your pack.

7. Best Collapsible Trekking Poles

Many of these hiking poles are telescoping. However, if you’re interested in collapsible poles, you can’t beat these Black Diamond Distance Carbon Z trekking poles. The poles have 100% carbon fiber construction, so they’re strong yet lightweight. They also feature a breathable and moisture-wicking EVA foam grip.

The poles have interchangeable carbide and rubber tips that will help you hike over rocks, snow, ice, mud, or pretty much anything else you come across on the trail. Best of all, the three-section collapsible shaft comes together with a quick pull, which means you can have them out of your pack and ready to go in an instant.

Related: The Most Scenic Hikes Near Asheville, NC

The Best Hiking Poles

It doesn’t matter whether you’re heading out on day hikes or tackling overnight adventures, a good set of hiking poles will always come in handy and make your journey a little easier. Fortunately, you can find the perfect set when you choose one of these best trekking poles.

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