A number of years ago, Black Diamond popularized the use of trekking poles in long-distance trail running with the unveiling of their lightweight, folding Z-poles. Once a rarity at ultras, poles have now become standard fair especially at really long distances or in any race with considerable elevation gain and loss. The latest iteration of these fixed-length carbon fiber poles weighs just 10.5 ounces per pair (125 cm length) and collapses down small enough for easy stashing in your pack or lashing externally. Not surprisingly, thru-hikers have also embraced these as significantly lighter alternatives to traditional telescoping poles.
Best Use: Backpacking, Hiking, and Running/Fitness
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