Whether you are a new or experienced hiker, backpacker, or snowshoer, hiking or trekking poles are customary for your journey. No matter your experience, using trekking poles enhances your hiking stability, relieves stress on your joints when going downhill, and gives you a little extra support for those more difficult excursions. Additionally, when climbing uphill, hiking poles will transfer some of your weight to your shoulders and back, reducing fatigue and relieving stress on your legs. In cases of snow, ice, or streams, poles also help provide balance while trekking. Black Diamond trekking poles are the most commonly used brand, and has three main models of hiking poles. Picking the right type of pole involves understanding your own needs in terms of shock, distance, and height.


Trail Trekking Poles

The Black Diamond Trail Trekking Pole is the best choice if you are looking to reconcile your hiking needs with your budget. These poles come either with or without anti-shock, which might be necessary for those with weak or damaged joints, but both models still give you a great deal of balance and stability of footing. The anti-shock models cost a bit more, but might be worth the investment if you are in need of some extra shock absorption. Interchangeable tips allow you to adapt your trekking poles to suit your hiking environment, and the foam grip extension is perfect for steep climbs. These hiking poles will be beneficial for both your body and your budget.


Compact Trekking Poles

Compact, or women’s poles, are similar to the standard trail pole, but are shorter, and have smaller hand grips. The FlickLocks are still adjustable, as well as the pole tips, to suit your hiking terrain, yet still balances your budget with your hiking needs. These compact poles are at an adjustable length from 23in to 49in, and cost only a bit more than the standard trail poles.


Contour Elliptic Trekking Pole

To ease the hiker’s physical exertion, Black Diamond has created a hiking pole that is much more ergonomic and better on the body during strenuous climbs. These poles have forward-leaning grips, and therefore help reduce wrist and hand joint strain significantly, and the shaft of the poles themselves are oval rather than round-stock, which increases their rigidity and durability. These hiking poles are also easier to set up than your standard poles, and they can be easily and quickly stowed away, as they have a three-section design. Similar to the other Black Diamond poles, the tips are interchangeable for any hiking adventure you choose to partake in.


On your next hiking trip you may not think you need trekking poles, yet your knees and joints will thank you! Picking the right kind of hiking pole involves some thinking about what kind of hiking you typically do, and what type of body you have. The lighter, more portable poles are more expensive, as well as the anti-shock poles; however, these features may be essential for your specific needs. Black Diamond is an excellent brand of trekking poles, and you will be able to find the perfect pole for your excursions, no matter what the terrain.