When winter arrives, would you still like to get outside and hit the trails? If your answer is “yes”, you’ll need a pair of great snowshoes and snowshoe poles. With snowshoes, poles and some warm clothing, you’ll be all set for some memorable winter adventures. So, how do you find the best snowshoe poles?

That’s why we’re here! In this article, we have selected the best poles for snowshoeing on the market right now. We’ll also give you some useful tips on what to look for when buying your next pair of snowshoe poles.

 

 

FREE BONUS! Click here to download the AJ Quick Starter Guide To Snow Sports

 

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO FIND THE BEST SNOWSHOE POLES

 

 

SNOWSHOE POLES 101

 

4 THINGS TO CONSIDER TO FIND THE BEST SNOWSHOE POLES

Snowshoes are of course the most important piece of equipment you need to hit the trails in winter. They are, however, difficult to use without something to help you keep your balance. This is especially true when heading into more mountainous country. This is why you need snowshoe poles.

Snowshoe poles help to distribute your weight through your arms, shoulders and back. They offer an extra push when climbing a hill—similar to using a handrail on a stairway—and stability when descending.

When searching for the best snowshoe poles, these are the four most important things to consider.

 

1. ADJUSTABILITY

Adjustability is an important feature of any pair of snowshoe poles. You’ll want some that are easily adjusted and that are collapsible.

Snowshoe poles have either two or three telescoping pieces. Those with two pieces are longer when collapsed and require more space to store them. Three-piece poles are much smaller when collapsed and can be stowed in a very small space (like a backpack). Two-piece poles might be a tiny bit lighter, though.

The length of three-piece poles is also much more customizable than that of two-piece poles. This could be useful, particularly when snowshoeing in the mountains. For example, ascending steep slopes is easier with shortened poles. During a descent, on the other hand, you might want to extend the poles so they can reach the ground in front of you.

 

2. GRIPS

There’s a wide variety in grip materials and shapes. Many of them are ergonomically designed while others are simpler. Some are made with sweat-absorbent cork, others with foam or rubber.

The only way to find out which one suits you best is to try them out. In the store, grab them, try them and you’ll quickly feel if a pole is comfortable or not. The best hand grips are those that have extended foam grips below the actual grip. This allows you to shift your hand position up and down on the trail without having to adjust your poles’ length.

 

3. BASKETS AND OTHER ACCESSORIES

Many snowshoe poles are simply trekking poles with snow baskets. There really isn’t a big difference between the two types of poles. Just make sure that your poles come with snow baskets.

Just like your snowshoes prevent you from sinking into the snow, snow baskets limit how deep your poles sink below the snow’s surface. A diameter of two inches is the absolute minimum for snow baskets. Bigger is better. You’ll also notice that the best snowshoe poles come with more than one basket size.

 

4. MATERIAL

Although no snowshoe poles are particularly heavy, minimalistic hikers might consider this an important feature. If you’re trying to minimize weight, you’re advised to go for carbon poles. Carbon is lighter than aluminum, but know that it’s more prone to breaking, too.

That’s not to say that aluminum is heavy, though. It’s pretty light as well. Carbon is simply even lighter.

 

best poles for snowshoeing

Photo by istockphoto.com/portfolio/fabernova

 

SNOWSHOE POLES REVIEWS

 

1. BEST OVERALL SNOWSHOE POLES

ATLAS LOCKJAW 3-PIECE ADJUSTABLE POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon | REI

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: No

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: Lockjaw adjustment mechanism, flexible tungsten carbide tips, ergonomic grips, nylon webbing wrist straps, removable snow baskets

PROS: Sturdy, made for winter sports, easy locking mechanism

CONS: Pricey

 

 

HIKER HUNGER 100% CARBON FIBER POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Carbon

SHOCK ABSORBENT: No

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: 100% carbon, quick-lock feature, carbide tungsten tips, comes with interchangeable tips, extended non-slip EVA foam grip

PROS: Very lightweight, strong, comfortable grip

CONS: Expensive

 

 

ALPINE SUMMIT COLLAPSIBLE POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: Yes

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: Aluminum, telescopic poles with lever locks, EVA cork grips, tungsten tips, mud/snow combo baskets, durable Monster tips, snow baskets

PROS: Plenty of accessories, lightweight, durable

CONS: Grips may be rough on hands

 

 

 

2. BEST BUDGET SNOWSHOE POLES

CASCADE MOUNTAIN TECH ALUMINUM QUICK LOCK POLES

 

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: No

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: Non-slip EVA grips with grip extension, quick lock mechanism, interchangeable tungsten carbide tips, snow baskets

PROS: Good locking system, cheap, durable

CONS: Not the lightest poles available

 

 

ATLAS 2-PIECE SNOWSHOE POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon | REI

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: No

NUMBER OF PIECES: 2

FEATURES: Steel tips, removable snow baskets, lockjaw adjustment mechanism, gender-specific grips, ergonomic rubber grips, adjustable nylon webbing wrist bands

PROS: Affordable

CONS: Longer when collapsed

 

 

YUKON CHARLIE’S PRO TREKKER II ALL SEASON POLES

 

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: No

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: Fast lock levers, ergonomic rubber grips, adjustable wrist bands, snow and trekking baskets

PROS: Affordable, versatile

CONS: Lower-quality materials

 

 

 

3. BEST POLES FOR HIKING AND SNOWSHOEING

FOXELLI 4 SEASON POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Carbon

SHOCK ABSORBENT: Yes

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: 100% carbon fiber, shock absorbent, quick lock technology, anti-slip cork grips, extra padded adjustable EVA foam wrist bands with extended foam sleeves, heavy duty 4 season accessories

PROS: Comes with carrying case, very light, lots of accessories, strong

CONS: Expensive

 

 

PACEMAKER STIX EXPEDITION POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: Yes

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: Aluminum, shock-absorbent, patented locking mechanism, tungsten tips, removable vulcanized rubber feet, sweat-absorbing cork grips

PROS: Comfortable grip, affordable, durable, lightweight

CONS: None that we could find

 

 

 

4. BEST SNOWSHOE POLES FOR WOMEN

LOTFANCY ADJUSTABLE POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: Yes

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: Ergonomic non-slip EVA sweat-absorbent foam grip, adjustable wrist straps, two tungsten steel tips, two rubber tips, two mud baskets, two snow caps, double-flip locking mechanism

PROS: Lightweight, lots of features, affordable

CONS: None that we could find

 

 

 

ATLAS WOMEN’S ELEKTRA 3-PIECE LOCKJAW POLES

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

MATERIAL: Aluminum

SHOCK ABSORBENT: No

NUMBER OF PIECES: 3

FEATURES: Lockjaw adjustment mechanism, aluminum 3-piece shafts, flexible tungsten carbide tips, women’s specific EVA foam grip

PROS: Lightweight, sturdy

CONS: Might not stay in place when collapsed

 

Top 10 Best Snowshoe Poles of 2017 – Skiing Tips for Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced - Best Ski and Snowboard Gear - Ski Clothes For Women, Men and Kids.

About The Author

Hiking, Kayaking & MTB Expert

Born in Belgium, Bram Reusen is a travel writer, photographer, craft beer lover and hiking expert based in Charlottesville, Virginia. From morning hiking trips to multi-month cycling adventures, he has plenty of experience venturing into the wilds of the world. He’s explored 28 national parks and visited 45 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

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