I recently purchased new trekking poles, and being me, I did a lot more homework on the purchase than most folks looking for camping gear. I have been looking for some time (since we got back from Philmont in 2012) for new trekking poles as I bent one of my trekking poles while at Philmont. They are still usable, but collapsing them is hard now and since I have had that set for about 10 years, I figured it was time to replace them.
I looked at no less than 50 different styles, brands, and types over the past 9 months or so and finally found a pair that I really like and thought I would give them a shot.
First you may ask, what the heck took you so long? Great question. Like I said, I over researched them. When looking at good high-end trekking poles, I knew that I would be committing at least $100 to the purchase. But since I also knew that the poles I buy needed to last, after all I use trekking poles all year round and on every hike, backpacking trip and camp out, I became real picky in the choice.
What I ended up getting is the MSR SureLock ™ UL-2 Ultralight 2 section Poles. They retail for $90, but with a Boy Scout discount and finding them on sale at a local outfitter, I paid $62.
So here are the specs:
According the packaging the SureLock ™ UL-2 trekking poles weigh in at 16.5 oz or 468 grams. As these are MSRs “ultralight” trekking poles, I am sure that they put the heavy end on the packaging. On my scale with the winter or snow baskets on the poles, both of them weigh in at 15 oz. The trekking poles with the summer baskets weigh in at 14.5 oz. The length of the poles are as advertised. At its lowest setting the trekking poles are 41 inches long or 105 cm. They extend to 55 inches or 140 cm. Fully collapsed the trekking poles are 31 inches. There are 8 adjustable holes along the trekking pole to find the right setting for you. I personally set them at 120 cm.
Here is what I like compared to my last poles, which for the record are the Black Diamond Trail Trekking poles. The MSR SureLock ™ poles are 2 section poles, the Black Diamond poles I have are 3 section. This makes the MSR poles faster and easier to set up. I really like that.
I LOVE the Positive Locking system on the SureLock ™. The rolling bearing pins smoothly lock into place and once seated are not going anywhere. I configured the trekking poles to my height and leaned over them with my entire upper body weight, they did not flex or pop out. With your standard cam lock or twist friction locks over the course of a hike I always had to readjust due to slippage.
The poles have a unique design in that they are not round. This design is called Non Rotating tri-lobe geometry, this assists with the poles not being able to rotate. This keeps the Positive locking system in place.
The trekking poles are made of 7000 series aluminum. This is super light and very strong.
I am very happy with these trekking poles. They are comfortable, light, strong, and easy to use. I can not wait to get them out on the trail. I will shoot some video of the poles in action as soon as I can get them out.
In the mean time, I thought it would be nice to include in this post the promotional video put out by MSR on the Trekking poles so you can see them and get a better picture of what I am talking about.
As a set of poles that I have over researched and now purchased, this review as a first look leads me to be very impressed with the MSR SureLock ™ UL-2 Trekking poles.
Stay tuned for more on these Trekking poles.
Do you use trekking Poles?
Have a Great Scouting Day!