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trekking poles



I am planning to attach my collapsible trekking poles to my backpack for air travel.

I have had someone suggest both poles should go in one of the side pockets, someone else said I should place each one straight in a back loop and someone said to cross them in the back loops.

So, I was hoping I could get some additional feedback on your experience of what worked and didn't work for you.

My backpack is a Deuter 35L the poles are Komperdell compact light.

Gatineau Gypsy
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Hola Carole!
If you intend taking your pack into the cabin, security laws might mean that you will not be allowed to take the poles with you. I packed my poles with my weapons of mass destruction - pen knife, scissors, cutlery etc - in a box that went into the hold.
Let us know how you manage.
Big hug!
I stripped my poles to their component parts and carried them inside my pack - nae bother.
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

We had to check our backpacks so we wrapped our poles in bubble wrap, put them in the side pocket of our backpacks and put the backpack in a bag that we had bought. On the way back we didn't have bubble wrap so we just put them in the side pocket and once again put the backpack in the bag. Nothing was damaged and nothing was lost.
hiking poles

Thanks for your input.

I am planning to send the backpack in the hold of the plane.

I like the idea of taking the pole sections apart but I am unsure what that would do to my poles.

The bubble wrap is a great idea but the idea of the additional bag with additional weight - I need to think about.

I really appreciate hearing how others have handled this - mass destruction weapons and all.
Thanks again,
Gatineau Gypsy
I just put my collapsible poles in the rucksack, a 50 l. The handles was sticking out, but when I checked-in the sack at the airport (both in Sweden and in Spain) noone made any remarks. All went well.

Buen Camino
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I have recently discovered – after several years - that my rucksack has been designed with specific positions for poles. Immediately behind the hip straps are small pockets to take the pointy end of poles one each side. They should be carried point down not just for safety but it also stops water running up the pole if you are carrying them in rain. I once had to strap two frozen poles to my rucksack because I couldn’t collapse them when I wanted to change over to ice axe.
For travel I pack my poles inside the sack right against the frame. I put them in first then put the liner in and pack the rest of the gear. It requires that I repack later but that’s of no consequence.
Other ways I have seen are to use either a cardboard tube or length of plastic drainpipe to carry poles or duck tape them together point to handle and hand them to the cabin staff when boarding.
As a general comment because I didn’t know this when I first started using poles there is a specific technique for their use ascending and descending and how you use the hand straps. There are several websites which detail this so it’s worth checking out if you are thinking of using poles.
Hi Carole,
Last Oct, when I arrived by plane in Santiago, I witnessed a frantic woman whose backpack didn't arrive with her. She had checked it and was to begin her pilgrimage the next day. After spending a lot of time and money planning and purchasing the equipment, I would not even think of letting my backpack out of my possession. Like others, I packed my walking poles along with my shampoo etc. in a very light bag and checked it. On the return flight, I reversed the plan. I put gifts and souvenoirs in the bag and checked the backpack. Buen Camino, John
We were concerned about checking our bags also but right before we left home that incident happened at the London airports and we were flying through London. So that is why we bought a lightweight nylon bag to put our backpack in so the straps wouldn't get messed up. The bag came in very handy as I used it for a pillow case every night.
Ideal pocket guides for during & after your Camino. Each weighs only 1.4 oz (40g)!
packing hiking poles for air flight

Since my husband lost his luggage for 5 days when he went to Germany last year, the thought of the airline losing my backpack has crossed my mind.

But I was informed that bringing my backpack or poles on the plane with me is not an option. So I plan to be wearing or carrying most of my clothing.

I have never hiked with poles before but I do cross-country ski. I have just started reading on the technics of Nordic walking and will practice hiking with my poles.

I can't thank you guys enough for taking the time to help me out. You are truly my buddies and have become, like so many who have helped me in a humble frank way, part of my camino.

I tried placing the poles inside the backpack against the frame and they fit. I forgot that there is a second compartment and only where the water bladder would go does it access the full length of the backpack.

Now I need to decide how I want to go about this. I checked with the airline for the measurements and weight requirements for baggage in the cabin and it really squeaks by.

Knowing that I now have to think over how I want to do this. Keep the backpack with me, very temping, and check the poles in a light bag with the items of mass destruction or send the backpack to the hold with the poles and some keep some essentials stuff like clothes and sandals in a light bag with me.

ps - I got my credencial in mail today -
Hi Carole

You could always try thinking outside the box - don't use poles (I hate walking with them anyway) and buy a knife when you get to spain (they are cheap and good). Then you can take everything on hand baggage, thus being sure of not losing it, being forced to keep the weight down, being able to use the electronic check-in and getting a rapid exit from the airport when you arrive.

Enjoy the Camino.
Ideal sleeping bag liner whether we want to add a thermal plus to our bag, or if we want to use it alone to sleep in shelters or hostels. Thanks to its mummy shape, it adapts perfectly to our body.

I tend to agree with paulmack-leave them at home. Frankly I can't see the point of them and useing 2 along endless straight sections of the camino looks ridiculous-and pointless. They seem to have carried over from cross country skiing where they are useful for gaining traction and stability. Some reports (sponsored by pole manufacturers?)claim that they reduce pressure on the knees but unless you transfer a significant amount of weight onto the poles I don't see how this is possible.
They are also expensive!
Trecking Poles

I carried one pole only and this was adapted as a camera mount. I used this for low light photographs when a long exposure was required.
Otherwise I wouldn't have carried the damn thing, it was frankly a nuisance.
I would suggest carrying a swiss army knife and cut yourself a hazel stick if you really feel that you need the support.
I used two poles and was very happy to have them. I didn't worry about how it looked. I had a lot of trouble with my knees after a little while and they really helped me when I was going downhill over rocky areas. Also when it had been raining and the paths were very muddy and flooded it helped when trying to step from stone to stone. Mine were Swiss Army and I got them at Walmart for $10 each.
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treking poles

I remeasured the frame of my backpack today from the inside back area this time, originally I measured the frame from the side of the backpack. It is 2 cm past the acceptable length for cabbin luggage. I am not a detail person but this strikes me as a no go.

I got the poles for support of my lower back and my knees. With 1 litre of water and some food the weight I will be carrying is close to 7 kg (14 - 15 lbs) and my weight is 120 lbs. I got the poles because I am past 10% of my weight and I am no spring chicken - just chicken.

Poles are strange beasts but I do feel more safe when using them and big dogs run up to me. It is tricky trying to eat an apple with the poles. I will have to try them out some more before I can figure this one out and if they are for me.

I appreciate your comments which brings me to a better understanding of what I need to do. And if it I goof with my decision I will have to remind myself to say 'this will past' and think back to what other suggestions you guys gave me.
thanks again
Another option is to get two walking staffs when you get to the camino. St Jean has many souvenir shops with sticks. I've placed a picture in the photos section - check it out.
People often leave their sticks behind and other pilgrims pick them up. Then there are those that are just meant for you and jump out and grab you!
Leave yours behind and get two Spanish "palillos que caminan" when you arrive.

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