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2008 LuxuryLite Big Survival Stik Walking Staff REVIEW
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Cat Jasins
(CatJasins) - MLife
2008 LuxuryLite Big Survival Stik Walking Staff REVIEW on 02/20/2008 02:32:01 MST Print View

Companion forum thread to:

2008 LuxuryLite Big Survival Stik Walking Staff REVIEW

Ryan Faulkner
(ryanf) - F

Locale: Mid atlantic, No. Cal
Re: 2008 LuxuryLite Big Survival Stik Walking Staff REVIEW on 02/20/2008 03:45:34 MST Print View

thanks doug for the lovely demo on the trail defense system

Carol Crooker
(cmcrooker) - MLife

Locale: Desert Southwest, USA
Ninja Doug on 02/20/2008 07:22:20 MST Print View

With the Stik and wearing an OR Ninjaclava, you'd be set for night stealth missions on the trail.

Jonathan Ryan
(Jkrew81) - F - M

Locale: White Mtns
Re: Ninja Doug on 02/20/2008 07:32:57 MST Print View

oh man, that video is classic. Thanks for the laugh...

Ryan Hutchins
(ryan_hutchins) - F

Locale: Somewhere out there
knife as trowel? on 02/20/2008 10:29:03 MST Print View

Will the knife section of the staff function as a trowel? It looks like it would work well, any trials? I have the need to poo more often than defend myself from animals! ;)

Dan Whalley
(thedanwhalley) - F

Locale: peakdistrict natonial park, UK
trail ninja on 02/20/2008 11:25:11 MST Print View

Brill video! funny!

Yer looks like it would be better used as a troul than a knife, and there ant much of killer animals here in the uk!
But those ninjas are scary!

Like to try one out myself as i dont allways use trekking poles.

Anyone else used stafs on the trail??
Or Prefer them to poles??

Edited by thedanwhalley on 02/20/2008 11:27:50 MST.

Jim Cowdery
(james.cowdery) - MLife

Locale: Central Florida
Fishing on 02/20/2008 12:19:24 MST Print View

How about a barbed fork so it can be used to spear fish?

Dean F.
(acrosome) - MLife

Locale: Back in the Front Range
trowel use on 02/20/2008 14:30:11 MST Print View

I have one of these. The tolerances are pretty tight. I think if the knife was used as a trowel it would quickly develop burrs and/or get gunked up to the point that it couldn't be inserted in the handle, or would bind if it did. Mine is getting this way just due to its age.

Don Wilson
(don) - MLife

Locale: Koyukuk River, Alaska
Trail Defense System on 02/20/2008 14:56:15 MST Print View

Oh my, Doug.

I'm speechless.


Johnathan White
(johnatha1) - F

Locale: PNW
Trail Defense System on 02/20/2008 15:14:54 MST Print View

Now we will have to see more videos from you Doug! LOL! Great review with a funny twist! he he

A Hewlett
(llew) - F

Locale: oswestry, uk
Re: trail ninja on 02/20/2008 16:57:45 MST Print View

there are now ferral wild boar now in uk
these have attacked people!
traditionally (norman times) a spear was used
to kill boar, by putting ones foot on blunt end
of spear and pointing the sharp end towards
the chest of the charging boar. good luck
llew-oswestry, uk

Ryan Hutchins
(ryan_hutchins) - F

Locale: Somewhere out there
Re: trowel use on 02/20/2008 17:20:09 MST Print View

>I have one of these. The tolerances are pretty tight. I think if the knife was used as a trowel it would quickly develop burrs and/or get gunked up to the point that it couldn't be inserted in the handle, or would bind if it did. Mine is getting this way just due to its age.<

Thanks! That's what I was wondering.

Steve O
(HechoEnDetroit) - F

Locale: South Kak
Defense Staff on 02/20/2008 18:48:09 MST Print View

Perfect for keeping the droogies in their place, Clockwork Orange style.

Watch the scene on YouTube

Edited by HechoEnDetroit on 02/20/2008 18:50:12 MST.

Doug Johnson
(djohnson) - MLife

Locale: Washington State
Re: Re: trowel use on 02/20/2008 19:49:50 MST Print View

Hi Ryan,

I agree with Dean. I did use it for a trowel and it worked great but it got pretty gunked up. I don't think this is the ideal tool for that job.

However, I found that in our loose Northwest soil that the pole itself was stiff enough to dig a pit. I'm not sure about all soils but the poles was really good for that.


Doug Johnson
(djohnson) - MLife

Locale: Washington State
Re: Re: 2008 LuxuryLite Big Survival Stik Walking Staff REVIEW on 02/20/2008 19:51:56 MST Print View

Thanks everyone! This was defnitely the most fun review I've done- making that video was a blast! You should see the outtakes!

I'm excited for the possibility of more video on BackpackingLight. I'm sure you'll see more in the future (whether they will include trail ninjas or not is another story!)

Have a good one!

Monty Montana
(TarasBulba) - MLife

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Walking Staff on 02/20/2008 22:45:30 MST Print View

I was pleased to see that the walking staff, or what used to be called an alpenstock, is still around. My old hickory one has seen considerable service over the years and even deterred an aggressive raccoon once.

What I was most pleased about, however, was the lack of a big pointy spike on the end that is commonly found on hiking poles. Somehow, seeing a trail perforated by a gazillion little holes, then tilled up, then eroded away by rain just grates my sesibilities about the Leave No Trace (LNT) ethic that we're all suppossed to be aware of. I put a rubber cap (for canes) that can be had at any drug store on mine, and not only does it not encourage trail erosion, but it has a grip on rock superior to that of a steel spike.

Andrew Browne
(andrew_browne) - MLife

Locale: Mornington Peninsula AUSTRALIA
OLs Style Luxury Lite Walking Staff on 02/21/2008 01:52:35 MST Print View

I have one of the earlier models of the LL walking staff and I love it, think it's now 3-4 years old and still going strong...can't remember when I purchased it but I still haven't broken it!!!

Dimensions are
1/ pole diameter 1/2inch (1.2cm),
2/ pole length 64inches (160cm)
3/ pole weight 5.5oz
4/ same prussik cord
5/ breaks down into x3 sections longest being 26inches (65cm)

Things I like
1/ Breaks down into a manageable size for travelling.....can put into or onto my pack when transiting esp on air flights....
2/ Extra length works well when going down steep inclines.........move the prussik handle higher up the pole for better ergonomic action
4/ Extra length works well with some shelter set ups.........i.e BD Megalite Shelter for the central pole. The pole breaks down to use it with shelters that need a lesser pole height
5/ Seems to have the strength to support full bodyweight........I've lost my balance a many times and had to put my full bodyweight on the pole and while it bent and bent it didn't break. However I'm always conscious of the top end of the pole spearing into me if I fell or it collapsed and have put a rubber cap on the top end of the pole........weight gain of .5oz. I use a cap that usually goes over the end of trekking poles.

The hollow aluminium end does collect some dirt, but I've now combined that with expoy and closed the end so it doesn't collect new dirt to cross contaminate the areas I'm travelling. The aluminium end piece has good grip on all surfaces and after 3-4 years does not show excessive wear i.e. decrease in usable length

I agree with previous posts that when using the LL pole I do not walk as fast as when I'm using my Gossamer Gear Lightreks (5.5oz for the pair). I still walk faster and more comfortably with either than using nothing, plus I have my shelter pole/poles thus multi essential for lightweight trekking

I think LL weakened when discontinuing my model pole and went with the big brother they should be called.......Moderately Lite

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Re: OLs Style Luxury Lite Walking Staff on 02/21/2008 07:01:35 MST Print View

"I think LL weakened when discontinuing my model pole and went with the big brother they should be called.......Moderately Lite"

TiGoat, unfortunately, discontinued their CF Staffs as well. They had a shorter, smaller diameter one as well... IIRC, the main difference between TiGoat and LL is that the TiGoats were lighter and non-collapsible...

mike wigant
(mwigant) - F
Is it legal? on 02/21/2008 07:25:19 MST Print View

I would think that some jurisdictions would consider this a concealed weapon of the cane sword type.

Richard Allen
Re: Re: Re: 2008 LuxuryLite Big Survival Stik Walking Staff REVIEW on 02/21/2008 18:10:06 MST Print View

Greetings Doug. Kudos for another example of what we've come to expect from BPL reviews: Factually correct, Informative and Entertaining. Good Job!

A personal note: I do *not* have *any* vested interest in re LuxuryLite. Over the years I have purchased, used and abused, almost every product LL have ever made available to General Public. And a few not available to the GP. ;-) I am what most would call a "loyal customer." But I am not biased and I have disagreed strongly w/Bruce on more than one occasion. But I do like and respect the man and the staff @LL.

WTS, I am indeed an expert when it comes to backpacking in general and LL gear in particular. So I do hope this post helps clarify, inform and entertain. The latter is doubtful; i'm not as good a writer as you are Doug.

First some subjective ops:

1) Doug Johnson wrote; "Hand strap is comfortable for all-day treks." "... although this is not a trekking pole." "Then, again, this is not a trekking pole and it serves a slightly different purpose." "... trekking poles ... [are] more efficient when making direct ascents ..."

I disagree that the Stik is not a trekking pole. In fact you kinda/sorta disagreed w/yourself. As quoted in the first sentence above.

1a) What is a trekking pole? A pole one uses while trekking. Duh! So, Doug this *is* a trekking pole.

1b) I also disagree that the Stik is less efficient during ascents. The stability and ruggedness afforded by Stiks is unmatched (as you wrote)! And during descents, when (IMEO) the worst slips occur .... well, there's none better, if fitted w/a standard basket/tip!

1c) The *one handed,* on the fly, adjustability afforded by the prussik strap on the Stik is True Bleeding Genius! Specially on ascents/descents and hilly terrain in general. IMEO it is *the one* attribute which sets the Stiks apart from the rest.

Think how often one foregoes the *security* and convenience of properly adjusting a standard trekking pole because it's a PITA to stop in the middle of a descent and lengthen one's trekking pole. Even Flicklocks are usually used as "set and forget" due to the hassle. The prussik strap also allows quick and easy secure hanging of a multitude of items; including one's pack. And there's more .... for another post. ;-)

2) You noted that the cylindrical tips are not as positive as standard tips. I agree. Which is why on my Stiks I have two complete sets of tips and baskets. One I made myself out of LL sourced parts. And one, slightly larger, set which Bruce made later for me. They Work Great! I highly recommend them.

3) You're not impressed w/the "Needle" and think it just adds weight. Fair enough. I use it often and think that the "Needle" is good enough to replace the 1.2 ounce trowel I used to carry. Ergo: No need for an additional item .... adding more weight than reasonable alternatives. The Needle saved me app one ounce of weight. So, works for me. :-)

4) You rightly mention that the Stik is not suitable for all shelters. Which, as noted, applies to all trekking poles. ;-)

But what you may not be aware of is that different Stik section lengths may be ordered. Or one could simply cut a section(s) to whatever length one prefers. The latter is of course not an option w/standard design trekking poles.

Which brings me to your comparisons ....

5) While it is very useful to compare products one must always keep in mind (*I* think you did, but others?) that apples and oranges have different attributes.

The Stiks, like most other LL products over the years, are a Modular Concept! And they come from an MFG who is willing to build to suit. While they are heavier than UL poles, the additional weight is mitigated by the far greater degree of utility (more in that re during an upcoming followup post) and the utter reliability.

The Stiks won't let you down !

You might also not be aware of the fact that the first carbon fiber "Stiks" that LL built and sold, were much, much lighter. I still have two of them which I use for "Fast & Light" hikes. With LL baskets/tips. And custom sections to fit practically every UL shelter made.

If you want lighter .... LuxuyLite will build them!

If you want baskets/tips .... LuxuryLite will build them!

Like any great inventor, innovator and entrepreneur; Bruce wants to make what people want to buy!

Contact Bruce and annoy the heck out of him. Because I have a number of Lekis (rental/loaners) that i'd like to replace w/original, small diameter, CF Stiks. And the two I have left, although rugged and although they will still provide years of service .... they are pretty old.

BTW, Since I don't speak for LL take my ops as being strictly personal. TIA for your understanding!

Finally , of course LL products are not for everybody. But like other unique products they absolutely require a paradigm shift to fully appreciate their positive qualities. IOW; it may take a bit of time to learn how make the best use of them. Fortunately LL have one of the best satisfaction guarantees in the biz!

Thx for reading this long winded post. :-)