When embarking for the great outdoors, one should always carry the proper gear and have the knowledge to use them. As such, it is important to learn how to use trekking poles in helping keep one’s balance during a hike, among other useful functions.
For the first step of how to use trekking poles; the pole should be grasped with both hands positioned on each side of the topmost lock to unscrew it and lengthen its first section. The pole is held firmly in one’s left hand while only their right hand is turned towards them in order for the pole to be loosened. The right hand then pulls out the first section afterwards.
If the person using the trekking pole happens to be tall, they may have to extend the pole’s second section. To do this, the pole’s left side is held under the bottom lock while the section held by one’s right hand is firmly turned towards them. The now-uncovered section of the pole is then lengthened.
Both sections of the trekking pole can be lengthened or shortened to adjust it to the height appropriate to its user’s stature and the terrain they would be hiking on. Each section is then tightened firmly, with one’s left hand tightly holding the pole while its upper section is turned away from them by their right hand. The poles must not be pulled all the way apart; one should be mindful of the “warning” sign at the end of the trekking pole’s section.
When traversing a flat terrain, the trekking poles must allow one’s arm to be close by an angle of 90 degrees and should be parallel with the ground. When climbing uphill, the poles have to be at a shortened length to allow the hands to be at a descending angle. And for descending, the pole should be longer and one’s arms when on top of the poles should be at an ascending angle when they are standing still.
To walk with the trekking poles, the hands should be slipped up through the wrist straps’ bottom, grasping the grips at the tops of the poles. The straps may be loosened if they feel too tight.
Hikers have two basic ways of walking using trekking poles. The first way has the poles swinging back and forth with every movement of the arms, similar to how skiers would employ their skiing poles to support their momentum. The second way involves having both poles coming forward and backward simultaneously. It depends on the hiker which method works best for them.
The trekking poles can be used for climbing over obstacles or maintaining one’s balance on rough terrain. For the latter, one should always make sure to test the stability of rocks before putting their entire weight on them. It is not recommended to use trekking poles for crossing high water.
There are also other alternative ways of how to use trekking poles. One may wrap duct tape around a pole for use in case one would need to repair their gear while on a hike. It can also be used for testing the depth of snow. And in the event of a hiker sustaining an injured leg, a pole can be used as an improvised splint.
Hiking can be both thrilling and perilous, and one should always be prepared for what may happen. It is vital to be familiar with the use of the appropriate equipment, such as knowing how to use trekking poles, in order to avoid the pitfalls of reckless adventuring and have a fun but safe hiking experience.