November 20, 2015 8:16 PM MST - Subscription purchasing, account maintenance, forum profile maintenance, new account registration, and forum posting have been disabled
as we prepare our databases for the final migration to our new server next week. Stay tuned here for more details.
Subscribe Contribute Advertise Facebook Twitter Instagram Forums Newsletter
Lightest Adjustable Aluminum Treking poles...
Display Avatars Sort By:
Jon Denham
(jmden) - F
Lightest Adjustable Aluminum Treking poles... on 05/13/2013 12:54:30 MDT Print View

Lightest Adjustable Aluminum Trekking poles--what are some of the lightest adjsustable trekking with preferably cork handles?

Jon Denham
(jmden) - F
lightest aluminum adjustable trekking poles? on 05/14/2013 10:59:53 MDT Print View

No comments?

Benjamin Moryson
(hrXXL) - MLife

Locale: Germany
Helinox on 05/14/2013 11:19:41 MDT Print View

Helinox TL
159 for one pole with a length of 125cm

Dustin Short
(upalachango) - MLife
Re: Helinox on 05/14/2013 13:06:01 MDT Print View

Helinox TL is not adjustable...

The GL is but at 204g/pole isn't astoundingly light. Similar weight poles are the Exped 125 or the REI traverse Jr. These two poles are shorter though (125cm vs 145cm max height). If you wrap the traverse jr handle with some bike grip or other cushioning material (the stock plastic is pretty hard) they're a great lightweight aluminum pole.

Beyond those, I don't know of any speciality adjustable pole less than the 12-14oz range. There are collapsable poles like the xenons from CAMP USA and the Z-poles from BD and the aforementioned helinox that are fixed length but shorten for transport that are noticeably lighter, but may not suit your criteria. Even still, those poles are around 4.5-5oz/pole or more depending on length.

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: Re: Helinox on 05/14/2013 14:31:53 MDT Print View

Fizan Compact or Compact 4

Steve Meier
(smeier) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
women's poles on 05/14/2013 15:28:51 MDT Print View

I've used women's poles for years to save weight and Leki has some great ones that are adjustable with cork handles. By the way, I'm 6' and 245 lbs and at 49 years old, stumble more than I should and they've never broke, bent, or let me down.

Jon Denham
(jmden) - F
MSR UL-3 at 14.4 oz./pr.? on 05/14/2013 15:42:54 MDT Print View

MSR UL-3 at 14.4 oz. a pair?

Any comments on these?


Brian Lindahl
(lindahlb) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Re: Helinox on 05/14/2013 15:48:24 MDT Print View

Some Helinox ARE adjustable. Look again. Helinox are the lightest aluminum poles on the market. They're pretty cheap also, at $120, for the ones most here would be interested in.

I own the Passport Twist Lock 120cm. They are exactly 10oz (on my scale) and three-piece adjustable, packing down to only 21". If you need longer, the 130cm Ridgeway Twist Locks are 12oz, or 13oz for 135cm.

Since they're distributed by Big Agnes, you can also special order them through REI and get their 100% guaranteed return policy - if they don't work for you, just return them.

They have pretty long foam grips too, so you can probably shave another 0.25oz to 0.5oz off each pole. I didn't bother.

Edited by lindahlb on 05/14/2013 16:49:34 MDT.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: @Tarptent
Lightest Adjustable Aluminum Treking poles. on 05/14/2013 17:21:04 MDT Print View

From the specs on line :
MSR 204g each
Helinox FL135, 188g each
Fizan Compact 132cm ,158g each

Dustin Short
(upalachango) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Helinox on 05/14/2013 19:32:45 MDT Print View

Correct, some helinox are and some aren't adjustable. In the context of the TL model as suggested by someone else and refuted by me, they are not adjustable. The GL is an adjustable model, albeit heavier (as I mentioned and I guess there's an FL model that's slightly lighter that I didn't mention).

Maybe you should read my post again before getting pedantic over a brand you own and telling people they are misinformed. Reading comprehension is your friend.

Dustin Short
(upalachango) - MLife
Adjustable vs Collapsible on 05/14/2013 19:42:05 MDT Print View

Oh and the tensionlocks are not adjustable. They are collapsible. When extended it is limited to a fixed length. So if used for a tarptent support it can't be adjusted to an appropriate height depending on weather conditions. Some tarps this is easy to work around, others not so much (like the MLD trailstar).

The OP asked for adjustable so try to stick with their requirements and not your own. It's like going to car dealer looking for a sports sedan and the salesmen keeps showing you SUVs. Yeah they both have the same primary purpose, but the secondary features are just as important and wildly different.

Jon Denham
(jmden) - F
need to be quite strong as well...shoulda mentioned earlier on 05/14/2013 21:36:07 MDT Print View

Several times a year I am in very steep off trail terrain with 100+ lb. pack--so nearly 300 lbs total weight. I need a pole that can take that kind of use, especially when fully extended for very steep x-country downhill with 100+ lb. load. Some moves require a fully extended pole (poles are sometime adjusted to the terrain type or steepness for just a couple of moves) when coming downhill where upwards of 100 lbs. or more force is pushing down on that pole for a moment--a pole failure at that point when the move is so committing and dependent on the pole could cause serious injury.

Add: If the Helinox FL 135 is strong enough, it would appear to be the pole to go with. The Helinox GL 145 seems like the tough pole to go with, but it weighs as much as the MSR UL-3 and I wonder if the push button locking mechanism of the MSR UL-3 might be more robust, faster and easier that the twist lock (which I have had slip many times in wet conditions) to adjust...just thinking out loud here. The MSR UL-3 min length of 43 in. (110cm) is way too long for me in the steep stuff, however...

Edited by jmden on 05/14/2013 22:12:53 MDT.

Brian Lindahl
(lindahlb) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Re: Re: Re: Helinox on 05/14/2013 22:19:41 MDT Print View

That's a lot of weight! I'd suggest ordering through REI and trying them out and see if they work for you in those situations. If not - send em back. If you don't trust Twist Lock, there's a few Lever Lock models, but they do weigh more. Honestly, if you're dealing with 300 lbs, I probably wouldn't be looking for the lightest weight aluminum poles.

> Maybe you should read my post again before getting pedantic over
> a brand you own and telling people they are misinformed. Reading
> comprehension is your friend.

Maybe you should loose the attitude - you're acting pretty rude and coming off pretty abrasive.

Yes, you are misinformed. Looks like a communication/websearch problem - these things happen. There's no such thing as 'TL' on the Big Agnes website (Big Agnes is the US distributor for Helinox poles). Going off available products in the US, I had to assume it meant either Twist Lock or Tension Lock.

The new Helinox models are Passport, Ridgeway, and Causeway. There's no such thing as TL/GL/FL anymore (there might be a few on closeout):

> Oh and the tensionlocks are not adjustable.

There's one Tension Lock that is adjustable:

I'd appreciate an apology.

Edited by lindahlb on 05/14/2013 22:40:01 MDT.

scree ride
Leki's on 05/14/2013 22:51:10 MDT Print View

I've used my Leki's titanium poles for downhill running, more or less pole vaulting butterfly style. Tweaked the hell out of them when the tips have gotten stuck in rock crevices, more than once. No bends, no breaks. Damn good poles. The new ones are advertised at 19 ounces.
Carbon are 15.8 ounces.

Jon Denham
(jmden) - F
Helinox FL 120... on 05/15/2013 08:44:19 MDT Print View

...has a 250 lb. 'weight limit' on the Helinox Australia website. I'm hoping that the 'more robust' FL 135 (Ridgeline FL, in the US, I believe) would be find to 300 lbs or so as it is advertised as more robust than the FL 120 (Passport FL 120 on It's very confusing as the and sites and then the Big Agnes site don't seem to all be using the same terminology, but

Brian Lindahl
(lindahlb) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Helinox FL 120... on 05/15/2013 09:40:54 MDT Print View

They used to use the same terminology. The TL/FL/GL are the outgoing models - models that are no longer being produced. Last winter, Big Agnes and used to have those models on their website. I'd be surprised if doesn't update their website to reflect the new models after spring. My guess is that it's a seasonal issue. Being on the other side of the world, you guys are a half-season behind, so to speak.

I bought my poles 2 years ago, so I actually own the Featherlite 120 (FL 120).

Edited by lindahlb on 05/15/2013 09:43:29 MDT.

Jon Denham
(jmden) - F
Big Agnes (Helinox) Causeway GL 145 on 05/15/2013 20:58:29 MDT Print View

Went with these due to the fact that they are only 14 oz./pair and the strongest pole Helinox offers (and I get a pro-deal). Are there lighter poles? Yes, but I need some compromise of lightweight with a great deal of strength and I think these are most likely to fit what I do. 95% of the time a much lighter pole would probably work. These have the groove lock mechanism, so are very unlikely to slip after making an length adjustment as well as being very strong overall. Also, they will adjust shorter than the 110cm advertised per a Big Agnes rep that had them in hand while on the phone with me today--something I need on super steep stuff on regular occasions. On the flipside-they extend out to a quite long 145 cm for steep downhill or other situations. All in all, probably the best pole for me.

Thanks for all the help and advice folks!


Edited by jmden on 05/15/2013 20:59:15 MDT.

BA on 05/26/2013 11:52:16 MDT Print View

The BA passport 120 poles are only the lightest because they are a very short 120cm length.

If this works for you, you are fortunate. It is probably too short for anyone over 5'8", which excludes the average height male and up . And will be lilkely too short for most anyone when going steeply downhill where they need to extend for extra length.

After 400+ miles of decent usage, one of my Fizan compact poles now has some cracks. Not just the outer tube that is subject to expansion forces from the expander (2 cracks at this point) , but the top of lower inner tubing where the aluminum bushing insert is that holds the expander is as well. To me this indicates the problem likely came from a stumble that put a high bending load on the pole lower joint. The outer could possibly be attributed to work hardening and fatigue, but there is no reason for a crack on the inner without a bending force where the bushing goes in to it.

Light weight, and durability, are tradeoffs. Other that this, Ive been completly satisfied with Fizan poles. No slippage problems ever,and we have 2 prs.

Edited by livingontheroad on 05/26/2013 12:04:22 MDT.

Brian Lindahl
(lindahlb) - MLife

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: BA on 05/26/2013 13:25:14 MDT Print View

120cm works just fine for me at 5'10, including when scree skiing down steep slopes. If you need longer, they also have 130cm at 12oz (~same length and weight as the Fizan Compacts when the same features are included - straps and basket). If you can make 130cm work, most people would be able to make 120cm work - it's more about technique than length.

Edited by lindahlb on 05/26/2013 13:25:44 MDT.

need on 05/26/2013 13:50:37 MDT Print View

Its about comfort, and ability to pitch shelters, for me. 120 just isnt long enough.

I could get by with a mop handle, but why when I can purchase what I want?

The 130 they have now are just the tension ones with one adjustable section. A hybrid sort of thing. They dont list the minimum height, but its probably too tall to support some shelters that take a short ~90 cm pole somewhere, like the Hexamid twin.

I thought they used to make a longer twist lock, if they did they dont anymore.

Its unfortunate that ruta locura and gossamer gear cant keep UL poles in stock. Shows there is a real need for a player in that market that has their act together. These guys dont. Neither does Locus gear yet unfortunately, but time will tell.

Edited by livingontheroad on 05/26/2013 13:56:09 MDT.