Poles are an indispensable element in practicing ski touring. without them, there is no chance of climbing or skiing in the field. They not only help when approaching as an additional point of support, but also stabilize the position during the descent. Many people wonder which poles should choose and what to look for when renting or buying equipment.
The choice of touring poles depends mainly on the user’s preferences and requirements. The most popular poles among touring enthusiasts are two-piece poles, which are selected due to the possibility of height adjustment and the appropriate strength of the segment structure. They are available in many variants and price ranges, but the most important detail is the type of material used in production. In many cases, you can come across models offered at a surprisingly low price, made of aluminum alloy. They will not be able to withstand the stresses, so it is important to check that the model has the appropriate certificates.
Aluminum poles are characterized by high strength and flexibility, which makes it very difficult to break when falling. What’s more, sticks made of this material withstand stress when leaning against them, and are also resistant to corrosion. The choice of aluminum poles is an excellent value for money of the product.
However, for people who appreciate the lightness of the product, carbon poles will be the best choice. The advantage of carbon fiber is its great weight to stiffness ratio as well as flexibility. Usually, carbon poles are chosen by professionals for dynamic approaches and aggressive descents. These types of sticks are more expensive than aluminum sticks and also more prone to breakage.
The next type of folding poles are three-segment models, the transport of which is much easier. Their downside is the limited durability due to the use of multi-segment construction.
The last of the available types are single-segment poles, made of a single piece of material, without the possibility of adjustment. They are mostly used by professionals.
It is worth paying attention to whether the sticks have an extended handle. These will be perfect for traversing or a steep transition across the slope. This is especially important for one-piece poles where adjustment is not possible.
Another important thing about poles is choosing the right height. The optimal length of a ski pole is when the ski pole forms a right angle between the arm and the forearm.
What does it look like in ski touring?
Quite the same, but only during the descent. However, when climbing, it is better to have longer poles. Depending on your preferences, you should have them about 20 cm higher than when going downhill. Therefore, in the case of poles with adjustable length, the matter is simple, but with one-segment poles, the selection of the appropriate length is a key element.