The low price of the Trekmates Compact Slim Line pole is instantly attractive, and the weight is very low too compared to some other options. Part of the weight saving may be due to the shorter overall length, as when fully expanded these are only 117cm long. I’m 6ft tall and for me that length was fine. This is a four-section pole, which means the overall packed length is shorter too at a very respectable 53cm, so it sits very neatly on the side of a rucksack. The handle is a straight design with foam padding and there is a wrist loop. Like most poles there is an expanding joint on the pole ends to lock the pole in place. The tip is protected with a large rubber cap that muffles the tapping when used on rock and also stops you doing damage when throwing this into your tent. Hard to beat on price and weight, and great for general walking. But if you are over 6ft tall you may want a longer pole than the Trekmates Compact Slim Line. The pole handle is not angled forward for a more natural grip either, so other options may feel more comfortable. Also the wrist loop is not nearly as comfy as the higher-priced alternatives that are wider and padded. Trekmates makes many styles of poles as well as these, including shock-absorbing poles and longer poles.
Max length 117cm
Min length 53cm
Weight 500g per pair
Made in China
Stores in the UK no info provided
If price or weight are your priorities then the Trekmates Compact Slim Line is a superb pole, but it is not the most comfortable choice.
Review by Graham Thompson
First published in Trail magazine January 2010