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LTR - Big Agnes - Helinox Passport Trekking Poles - Brett Haydin

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  • Brett Haydin
    Lori, Thank you for your patience with me getting this report out to you. Sorry that it is a little late. Anyway, it is ready for your review and is posted
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 9, 2012
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      Thank you for your patience with me getting this report out to you. Sorry
      that it is a little late. Anyway, it is ready for your review and is posted
      at http://tinyurl.com/9budpeb. Below is the text version as well. Thanks
      again for your help with this series!

      Long Term Report

      Field Conditions

      Over the final two months of this series, I have been on two additional
      overnight backpacking trips. This brings my total to 5 nights backpacking as
      well as 7 other day hikes throughout the testing period.

      My first trip was a solo hike to Blue Lakes near Ouray, CO. This 9 mi (14.5
      km) out-and-back hike to high alpine lakes at 11,720 ft (3,570 m) sports
      excellent views of Mt Sneffels. The terrain was over a good trail through
      subalpine forests with temperatures between 40 and 75 F (4 and 24 C). The
      weather was overcast at times, but the rain missed me.

      My final overnight backpacking trip was to the Gunnison National Forest near
      Crested Butte, Colorado for an overnight with my family. Because of our
      young son, the hike was short at 1 mi (1.6 km) with little elevation gain.
      We camped at approximately 9,000 ft (2,700 m) along a creek in typical
      mountain terrain; rocky and in the shade of pine trees!

      My day hikes included a trip to the Maroon Bells Wilderness near Aspen,
      Colorado for a car-camping-overnight-and-summit of North Maroon Peak at
      14,014 ft (4,271 m) and several family hikes with my kids in the San Isabel
      National Forest. During several family hikes, I wore the RIBZ underneath a
      child carrier that does not have any storage. The distance of these hikes
      ranged from 1 - 9.5 mi (1.6 - 15 km). The hikes were in generally mild
      weather with no significant precipitation and temperatures comparable to my
      backpacking trips, although at times a bit warmer up to 90 F (32 C).


      I cannot express how much I really like these trekking poles. I have been so
      impressed with the strength of these poles over the past four months. Truly
      remarkable! I have hiked a number of high peaks and in every instance, when
      I thought for sure the poles would give, they held up. On the way down from
      the Maroon Bells, for example, I was exhausted and had clumsy feet. Despite
      this, when I planted the poles I knew I could count on them to hold me if I
      stumbled. There are a few scratches here and there, but that just gives them

      I have had chance to use the rubber tips and they work quite well. In the
      mountains, the trail can go from soil to slick rock in an instance so having
      poles that can get a good grip are important. The only problem I had with
      them is that the tip fell off one pole while crossing a snow field. I like
      to have rubber tips because they also make it a little more quiet when
      hiking on hard rock surfaces. The image to the right shows me using them in
      the snowfield. This was BEFORE I lost the tip!

      I do like the storage bag for at home storage. I did not use it while out on
      the trail since it really isn't necessary. I have been using a couple of
      different packs for day hikes and for overnights, but the poles fit in them
      easily because of the small size. I did not have any further issues with the
      locking mechanism during this phase of the test. Perhaps the issues I had
      were just user error. The grips, straps and baskets are in great shape


      These are some of the best trekking poles I have used so far. Despite a lost
      rubber tip (which I have replaced already) I plan to use these poles
      exclusively from now on.

      Pros: Remarkably durable, lightweight, easy to store.

      Cons: Only a minor issue with the locking mechanism failing early on.

      This concludes my test series. I would like to send my sincere thanks to
      both Big Agnes <http://www.bigagnes.com> for their generosity and to
      BackpackGearTest.org <http://www.backpackgeartest.org> for allowing me to
      be a part of this series.

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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