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Thread: Walmart poles

  1. #1
    Registered User swjohnsey's Avatar
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    Default Walmart poles

    Just got a pair of Black Diamond Mountain Trail. Picked them over Leki because of reports on the locking mechanism. Turns out the Walmart poles have identical mechanism, looks like they could be made by the same company and at about $30/pair the prices is right. They even come with the rubber cup over the carbide tip. They are sold singley so you can buy just one.

  2. #2

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    I have a pair of ChinaMart poles, too, and they do fine for walking around town and on rail trails. But I would never take them on backpacking excursions where I may have to put my full weight on them, no matter what locking mechanism they use. For such outings I have a pair of cut down one piece Army ski poles fitted with rubber tips and some handles I recycled from an older cheap pair of poles I had. They work fine and I would have no problem putting my full weight on them.

  3. #3
    Registered User mmais68569's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Walmart Poles

    I used a pair of the cheap Walmart poles & worked great for 6-7 mos. then one of the locks stopped working. But if you look at the back of the cardboard display card when you bought them they have a "LIFETIME " guarantee.So I boxed mine up sent them back & guess what??




    About 3 weeks later a new set of poles so the Co. ( not Walmart) does stand behind their product.

    Mike

  4. #4
    Registered User canoehead's Avatar
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    you get what you pay for..

  5. #5
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    I first used these cheap poles to see if I would like the idea of using walking sticks. They did wonders for my knees. I invested in a better quality set and have been using them for around four years now. The Walmart poles (singly) are used for short walks in the woods around our house.

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    Registered User Sierra Echo's Avatar
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    you can get trekking poles at some wally worlds in pairs.
    The don't lock well and will start collapsing as you walk sometimes.
    so my dad put a few screws in them and now they work fine.

  7. #7
    Registered User gunner76's Avatar
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    I have several sets of the blue wally world poles that the familyn uses and they have held up fine (I weight 275)
    Hammock Hanger by choice

    Warbonnet BlackBird 1.7 dbl


    www.neusioktrail.org

    Bears love people, they say we taste just like chicken.

  8. #8
    Registered User MkBibble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daddytwosticks View Post
    I first used these cheap poles to see if I would like the idea of using walking sticks. They did wonders for my knees. I invested in a better quality set and have been using them for around four years now.
    I also bought Walmart poles to see if I actually liked using poles. They made a world of difference for my knees; I have about 200 miles on them and they are just fine.

    BUT, after using a set of Leki poles, I can say that they are vastly superior, lighter, more comfortable, and more solid.

  9. #9
    MEGA '11, LT '09,'13
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    I used Wally's pole for the LT last fall, until they were stolen. THey WORKED but they wernt Leki or BD. Cork grips and light weight poles can make all of the difference. But being as im a college student $30 seems about juuuuuuust right...

  10. #10
    Registered User Bags4266's Avatar
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    At my Wally World there $18.88. I also have a set of cheapies from Dicks Sporting Goods. 1400 plus miles and no problems. I was going to buy Leki but why? If it ain't broke...

  11. #11
    Registered User rjhoffmann88's Avatar
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    Default Not even worth $18

    I bought a cheap pair of Wal-Mart poles for a shakedown hike with my newly purchased Tarptent Suall 2. Within 20 minutes of hiking some of the plastic had cracked and after a 15 mile day both of the baskets had fallen off. I wish I would have put that $18 toward a pair of quality poles.
    Be bold, say yes, and write your own story.

  12. #12
    Registered User JEBjr's Avatar
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    I thought a pair of poles might be nice when I started using a tarp for my shelter. The inexpensive pair from the giant national chain retailer have served me well. After all the complaints I've read, I try to take care of them. No major problems yet. I've hiked with several people this summer who have had to go with one pole after their fancy non inexpensive poles have malfunctioned.

  13. #13
    Registered User Boothill's Avatar
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    i bought my very first pair of trekking poles at the beginning of this summer just to see if i would like them, i paid $18 for a cheap blue pair at wally world and they worked just great.....till i slammed one in the car door a couple of weeks ago

    i would guess i put roughly 250 miles on that set this summer and never had any with them at all, they worked great

    so i replaced them with another pair from wally world, the kind the OP is talking about with the flick locks ($23) and have had them out 6-7 times and they are working just fine with no problems

    boot

  14. #14
    Section Hiking Hobbler's Avatar
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    Default Wally Wins For Me

    First of all, there is no pole designed that will support the full weight of all individuals under all stress conditions of the trail. They are designed as an aid to relieve the body from in-balance and to take some of the weight related stress off of your joints which, when used properly, they do.


    Yes, I do subscribe “somewhat” to the adage that you do get what you pay for...Leki Poles are no doubt the top of the line and have a warranty unsurpassed in the industry. However strong and stout, they also can break or might have their own issues. The cost of Lekis are in the range of 4 times the Wally Poles and it is questionable of their service value. That said, I have also tried a lent pair of Lekis and find them of quality and a tad more stable.


    However, I own 2 sets of Wally Poles with the flick locks and find them totally satisfactory for most trail conditions and haven't broken one “Yet” If they slip, tighten the set screw a tad and that usually does the trick. If you do bend or break one the fortunate thing is that you can find Wal/Marts in or near every large trail town. For the modest cost of replacement, they are a functional throw-away and you don't have to go the outfitter route to have your warranty honored. There are many outfitters for Leki replacement along the way also. Either way, if broken, you will undoubtedly spend the walk somewhere with only one serviceable pole.


    Maybe I just take more care of how I step and that is probably due to me being a section hiker with a variable schedule with no dead-line and being slower than most of the crowd. They work well for me, but, a Thru Hiker might view the warranty/replacement cost situation a little differently though.
    "May Your Feet Be Light and Your Gait Be Long"... Hobbler

  15. #15

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    I made it from GA - NY with my walmart poles. If you're careful they will last awhile. I replaced them with a pair of Leki ultralights which I love.

  16. #16
    Nalgene Ninja flemdawg1's Avatar
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    I also own a pair of the WalMart flick-lock poles and have used them for 3 years. I broke one last summer when a slip on a wet rock caused me to put 100% of my 230 lbs on it. For $13 I didn't cry about it. Finished the hike w/ one and went and bought another the next week.

    For those complaining of broken baskets, the lekis break pretty often too. Its just plastic on both.

  17. #17
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    Default Leki Makalu

    I've got 5,600 miles on a pair of Leki Makalu's with corklite grips. The tips wear out and need to be replaced approx. every 1000-1200 miles. The ground wears the plastic and steel ring away until the carbide slip out. After the first 2,665 miles I noticed a crack in one of the lower sections. Leki replaced it free of charge.
    The twist locks are for the most part reliable. I have found the left pole to come loose more often than the right. I think the slight twisting action on the left tends to unscrew the mechanism.
    The locks also tend to slip shortly after I begin to hike over snow. I think the cold travels up the aluminum and cools/shrinks the locks plastic parts.
    Anyhow I always have to retighten the poles after contacting snow or cold water then they hold just fine.
    The Leki poles have been fine overall but I just wanted to let folks know they are by no means perfect or bombproof. I have never had one fail completely but have met other hikers that did. Leki always sents replacement parts to them on the trail for free though.
    As far as the tips wearing out this can be a bit of a hassle if you use your pole to set up your tent/tarp. With the carbide gone there is no tip to thread into the grommet. This was not a fatal flaw, many hikers just poke a twig in the end of the worn out tip each night as a remedy until new tips can be had.
    Anyhow, I like my Leki's and feel I have gotten a fair value: $110 for 5,600 miles and they are still going. However I have also spent $75 on replacement tips that Leki does not guarantee since they are a "wear" item. So to be honest I have spent $180 dollars to have leki poles for the last 5,600 miles.
    I also have pairs of recycled cut down ski poles I used in the past. They are lighter than the Leki's but they don't collapse down which is helpful for adjusting shelter heights and compactibility when hitching in to resupply.
    Anyways I ain't here to sell you one way or the other on Walmart, Leki, or ski poles.. just wanted to add an honest perspective on the overall cost and issues of the "pricier" trekking poles.
    Headed in to town.. You gotta rock the down! -fellow hikers mantra

  18. #18
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    I bought a walmart pole last week to go with one I already have. Haven't been on the trail with them yet. They look ok but we'll see.
    Hokey Pokey

  19. #19
    Sumner sumnere's Avatar
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    Everything breaks.

  20. #20
    Hike smarter, not harder.
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    My Leki's seem to have vanished, so I had to buy a pair from Wallyworld since I was in a bind. I can't tell any difference. I bet if you painted both brands black, no one else could either. I'll probably end up with another pair of Leki's, but just because I want cushioning, and can get them on a pro form.
    Con men understand that their job is not to use facts to convince skeptics but to use words to help the gullible to believe what they want to believe - Thomas Sowell

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