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$15 vs $140 trekking poles – which ones are they worth the money?

Hey guys! Alisha with terradrift and today we’re gonna
talk about trekking poles if you couldn’t have guessed specifically cheap versus expensive
trekking poles is it worth the money really to buy they’re really expensive trekking poles
as opposed to the cheap ones are they really that much better well we kind of put them
to the test over the weekend and tried to figure out what we liked or what we didn’t
like and why you maybe want to spend more on expensive trekking poles versus cheap ones
so let’s get into it first of all the trekking poles we kind of compared were the Black Diamond
distance Z and FL Z so this is the Z the distance Z it is a fixed length trekking pole which
means you have to buy it specifically for your height which means you’re probably not
gonna share it with anybody it is the length that it is it is not adjustable at all this
is just it this one is 130 centimeters long and it will always be 130 centimeters long
the flz on the other hand has one adjustment point which means that you can adjust it up
to about 20 centimeters so a few inches not quite a foot obviously you still have to buy
it based on your height although because there is an adjuster there’s a little wiggle room
there we compared them to this really cheap fantastic model that we have used for years
it’s it’s from Walmart not embarrassed to say it we paid $17 for these trekking poles
and that was for the pair not per tracking pool they are outdoor products so um they’re
like a cheap brand no frills no flash not ultralight or anything like that in comparison
the Z the distance Z is about $100 and the FL Z because it has that adjustment point
is about $140 so keep that in mind when we’re doing this comparison now the main things
that are different from one pole to another here is size and weight the cheap trekking
pole is obviously going to be heavier they’re all made from aluminum but this a heavier
duty aluminum it’s thicker it’s heavier it’s sturdier it weighs about 25 ounces the Z in
comparison weighs only 14 ounces so it’s much lighter you can tell it just from picking
it up that it weighs a lot less the FL Z is 16 ounces so you’re you’re adding a few ounces
for that little adjustment point there which is really important but also apparently costs
$40 as far as size goes the cheapo version only goes down to 63 centimeters this is just
about as short as it gets so obviously it’s quite a bit longer than the other models but
it does extend to 131 centimeters so it still gets nice and long for the taller individuals
among us not me the Z folds down to 43 centimeters so that’s a nice compact size right there
and then of course extends to the 131 or whatever size that you have to order for your height
the FL Z is even smaller because it has that little collapsible adjustment point there
so it’s only 40 centimeters long when it’s shrunken down which is about 16 inches as
opposed to the Z’s 17 inches the differences in size and weight are pretty obvious what’s
not as obvious is why you’d want one over the other basically it comes down to materials
and durability say if you want an even lighter trekking Pole though you could go with carbon
fiber there are the few carbon fiber poles on the market but the thing about carbon fiber
is that if you scratch it or gouge it at all you’ve immediately damaged the structural
integrity of the pole which means that if you put pressure on it the wrong way knock
it against a rock the wrong direction or something it could just snap and then you have no trekking
pole so that’s not really very beneficial I personally would not ever choose a carbon
fiber trekking pole for that reason it’s a little bit similar when it comes to aluminum
obviously the cheap trekking pole this thicker heavier aluminum frame is gone more durable
and lasts a little longer I’m gonna be honest I have never broken a trekking pole in my
life ever because I buy the cheap ones and they don’t just break which is awesome because
I hate spending money on new gear it’s also just feel so wasteful whereas these guys hopefully
they’ll last you quite a few years but I have heard plenty of stories about trekking poles
breaking on the trail it does happen because you know you’re putting a lot of pressure
on them you’re demanding a lot of your trekking poles putting a lot of weight on them as you
push yourself up the mountain or coming back down so they do break in the thinner and the
lighter the material the more likely that is to happen sooner rather than later so keep
that in mind when you’re spending money on trekking poles yeah it may be lighter and
pack down smaller and be sleeker but it might also last half the amount of time that a heavier
maybe clunkier trekking pole is going to so basically what we kind of decided after using
these different poles for a weekend is that personally we wouldn’t spend our money on
a more expensive trekking poles yeah they’re nice they pack down small they’re light but
most of the time our trekking poles if we have them with us are in our hands so we’re
not too concerned about the weight of them in our packs which just makes it not a big
deal also how much is an ounce or two worth to you is it worth a hundred dollars is it
worth fifty dollars to shed you know half a pound between a pair of trekking poles that’s
obviously up to you or cheap we don’t like to spend money on things that we don’t need
I also like to know that my deer can take a little bit of abuse so I’m okay going with
a heavier trekking pole that I don’t have to worry about so much if I’m gonna toss it
on the ground by the tent or drop it down a boulder field which I’m pretty sure has
happened before the only time I could actually see an argument for paying more for these
expensive trekking poles is if you are traveling with them a lot or going on very long excursions
like doing the PCT or the Appalachian Trail or something like that where you may actually
go for long stretches of trail with no hills and you’re not gonna want the trekking poles
in your hand you want to stash them you want them to be light you don’t even want to think
about it being there or you’re traveling with them like I said and you’re only traveling
with a daypack and you need them to fit in a small space if you do that a lot it might
be worth it to pay a little extra for some expensive trekking poles but otherwise honestly
I would go with the cheap ones so there you have it our expensive trekking poles worth
the extra cash my opinion not usually so save your money and use it on I don’t know something
cooler like an ultralight tent or a pair of hiking boots what do you think our expensive
tracking polls worth the money share your trekking pole experiences with us in the comments
below we’d love to hear a good trail story we’ll put a link to all the poles in the description
below so you can check them out for yourself if you like and if you enjoyed this video
be sure to hit the thumbs up and hit subscribe wander on

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