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Titanium Goat Adjustable CF Trekking Poles

in Trekking Poles

Average Rating
4.33 / 5 (3 reviews)


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J W
( jhaura )

Locale:
www.Trailability.com
Titanium Goat Adjustable CF Trekking Poles on 07/04/2007 22:45:59 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 5 / 5

Just received these poles so this is a pre-trip review.

Superb craftsmanship, super light and exactly what I would have made if I could do it myself.

The adjustable mechanism is easy to use and simple. They even include an extra tensioner in the handle under the grip top cap! Very cool.

I set my poncho tarp up with them today and was able to flip them upside down and put my bowline loop right over the tips for a sweet lean-to pitch. I didn't even have to adjust them from my trekking height.

Pricey? Yes. Worth it? Yes, until others make similar items and the price comes down. But that's how all the new cool new cutting edge items are.

Well done TG!

Edited by jhaura on 07/04/2007 22:46:56 MDT.

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Ben 2 World
( ben2world )

Locale:
So Cal
Positive Initial Impression on 07/06/2007 23:33:40 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I received my pair and went on a moderate 2-hour hike today (approx. 2,000 ft. elevation gain over 2.7 miles -- then returning back down).

I find the specs to be accurate, and the poles a beauty to behold. However, both poles are "temperamental" when it comes to length adjustment and tightening. Playing around with both, I've found that much more often than not, I have had to pull the pole sections apart to adjust the internal expander/locking mechanism -- repeating a few times on some occasions -- before the pole sections will lock! Per Titanium Goat instructions, this is normal, but will only be for a short period of time, until the new expanders "break in".

I find the poles appropriately rigid and comfortable to use -- both hiking uphill and downhill. They also hold onto their locked position, and not once did I need to readjust pole lengths. This is a BIG PLUS in my book.

However, I've also found that both poles will "oscillate" (vibrate) along the entire length whenever the pole tips struck against the ground. The oscillation was more noticeable and lasted longer when striking sandy trail than solid stone slabs. While this was continuous, once I started hiking my pace, this phenomenon was somewhere between "not really noticeable" and "mildly annoying". But it was always there as soon as I pay attention to it. I have not had this experience with my REI Peak UL poles or my REI Traverse poles.

This is my first experience with strapless poles. Just two hours into it, I felt my hands were getting a bit tired -- seemingly more so than when I use poles with straps. Maybe my grip was too hard?

I have a 4 days / 3 nights trip coming up in two weeks. I plan to use my new poles. Things I will be testing further:

1. Will the pole locking mechanisms work without fuss as the expanders "break in"?

2. Will the internal pole vibration continue, and will that affect my hike in any way?

3. Using pole straps, I have hiked for days on end without problems. Will the absence of handle straps lead to tired hands and/or blisters?

I like the poles thus far, and I look forward to using them more and reporting back.

***********************************************************************

I recently came back from a 4 day / 3 night trip on a section of the PCT (Mt. Hood Timberline Lodge to Eagle Creek) -- and had a chance to use the Ti Goat poles on long ascends, fairly steep descends, and stream crossings.

I was very happy with the poles -- and will continue to use them on future trips.

I found that the rubber expanders did become less finicky with use -- just as described in the instruction sheet. They now lock to position much more readily -- although not 100% of the time.

Over the four days, I had to readjust the poles maybe 4-5 times because of "auto compaction". Given that this didn't happen the vast majority of the time, I attributed the 4-5 adjustments to my own failure to tighten the sections adequately. The instructions warned repeatedly not to overtighten... so I may have undertightened instead. As with the above, this became less and less of an issue with experience and usage.

My hands did not feel fatigued at all due to the absence of pole straps. In fact, I now prefer not having the straps.

Internal vibration (like a tuning fork) still occurred -- more so when used on sandy trail. However, in the four days of use, that was more of a minor distraction -- and did not affect actual pole usage (YMMV).

In summary, I am very happy with these poles, and will continue to use them on future trips. They are a keeper.

Edited by ben2world on 08/07/2007 11:46:13 MDT.

John Haley
( Quoddy )

Locale:
New York/Vermont Border
Super Lightweight on 09/14/2007 07:32:18 MDT Report Post Print

Rating: 4 / 5

I waited until after I completed my thru hike of the Long Trail to post this review. I wanted to take them through the wringer that this trail provides and see how they faired…the answer was varied. Since my poles were among the very first production models, if there were any faults or limitations, I’d be one of the first to know.

Firstly, the poles arrived and the look was excellent, the light weight was almost beyond belief. Since they appeared so thin and fragile I tried them for flex and support and found them very stiff and strong. The expanders worked in an excellent fashion. After a few short day trips in the local mountains I felt confident that they would be fine for the trail, which begins only a few miles from my house.

While I was waiting for the sticks to arrive I used my Leki poles without the straps to get the feel for that aspect and found that it was a very easy transition. The difference in weight was to make so much difference when I received them, though. Beginning the trail I found them very easy to maneuver and my pace seemed to be faster than normal.

Other than resetting the length after using them for the pole of my Contrail, and checking the expander tightness in the morning, they became an effortless part of my hike. Other than major scrambles during the hike I used them continuously. I found a minor bit of vibration using them, but not enough to notice most of the time.

OK, now the not so perfect part. About 50 miles into the hike the foam handles began to slip. This surprised me since it was a problem on earlier models that was rectified. I fixed this with some super glue, but didn’t do the best looking job of it. Somewhere around the 200 mile mark I noticed the start of a bit of slippage from one expander and was unable to replace it since the spare was nowhere to be found. It may have fallen out when I dropped a stick one time and the end cap popped off. From that point on I regularly checked the expander tightness on both poles. At some point around 255 miles I heard a vibration sound from one pole, and a short time later the other one too. I decided to have a close look and found that the upper shafts had both cracked where the expanders pressed against them. There is, apparently, a fine line between tight and too tight. The poles actually remained rock solid when this happened and I never had to worry about slippage again. They worked fine in this condition through the end of the hike.

Relative to the above paragraph: I sent the poles back to TiGoat for inspection and repair and here is the result. The upper shafts, expanders, grips, and end caps were all replaced. A retrofit outer reinforcing ring was placed in the immediate area where the expander functioned. These replacements and changes actually made the poles better than when I received them. I’m not sure whether the rings will be standard on future models. Apparently the possibility of the problem I encountered exists mainly for taller hikers in the 200 or more range since it applies more pressure to the expanders. If you in or above this weight range and are purchasing these poles you may want to ask about the rings.

OK, now my reasoning for the rating. The poles are a fantastic design, I just happened to get them very early and untried. TiGoat has worked hard to resolve the problem. The weight and adjustability are excellent. I really enjoy using them. TiGoat put everything right that I had concerns about and that to me means a bump up from a 3.25 to a full 4+. These will remain my go to poles and the Leki's will remain in the gear closet.

Price comparison from GearBuyer:
Leki Expanders priced at: $4.99
Leki Trail - Men's priced at: $47.97 - $99.99
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