A cheap, simple solution for secure tent-pitching on snow or sand. Note: The dowels work better for snow. However, by using a small disk (something like kid's play dishes), you can get the same effect for sand.
Trekking poles are a boon for security on sketchy terrain, and they'll keep your knees alive over hard-charging decades of hiking. To get the most benefit on flats, uphills and downhills, use adjustable-length poles and adjust them correctly. Here's how.