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Backpacker Magazine – April 2009

Gear School 2009: Essentials

From sleeping pads to trekking poles, we'll have you good to go in no time.

by: Marcus Woolf, Illustrations by Supercorn


TREKKING POLES Use
  • On level terrain, adjust poles so that your forearms are parallel to the ground when you're standing still with your hands on the grips (neutral position). When going uphill, shorten poles so forearms are tilted slightly below neutral. When descending, extend them so arms are slightly above neutral. See a video demo at backpacker.com/trekpole.
Fix
Problem Collapsing pole
Solution Adjustable pole won't stay adjusted? A dirty or loose interior expander nut could be to blame. Fix it by unscrewing the bottom pole section beyond the "stop" mark to expose the nut. Wipe away dirt and manually tighten if it's loose.

Problem Lost/broken basket
Solution In a pinch, replace it with the plastic lid from an insulated mug. Heat the tip of a knife over your stove, then cut an "x" in the center of the lid (just big enough to let the pole through). Position the lid on the pole, then wrap duct tape around the bottom of the pole to hold lid in place.

 

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READERS COMMENTS

Joel McKay
May 15, 2009

Great Article. A little planning and preperation goes a long way in the back country thanks for the new tips and tricks.
http://wildernessinstruction.blogspot.com/2009/05/prepare-plan-in-advance.html

Mata
Apr 29, 2009

Heating your knife blade will damage it permanently, use it as last resource.

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