Unfortunately, the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fibre also matched the Foxelli pole in that it is made from a very thin carbon weave that made the pole super light, but that compromised its integrity and durability.
For its price, the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fibre pole offers a good level of performance and comfort and, with the Foxelli pole, is definitely the cheapest carbon pole we came across.
It is light and has an ergonomic design, giving it a premium look, especially with the cork handles and foam lowers that Hiker Hunger included.
We found the plastic locking mechanisms and the cheaper carbon used in the shaft really let this pole down and seriously hampered its scoring in the durability category.
It isn’t a pole for heavy use nor would we recommend it to seasoned hikers, but for your first-time hiker on a tight budget, this pole might just bridge the gap between breaking the bank vs. not hiking with poles.
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The durability of this pole from Hiker Hunger is what let it down when it came to overall scoring and ranking in the top 10. For its price, the pole performed above average in the other categories except for durability.
The thin nature of the carbon fibre weave used in the shaft made the pole feel a bit flimsy in hand and, while we didn’t set out to break it, we got the feeling that repeated heavy use could cause it to break.
Carbon fibre is naturally a very delicate compound so we thought the pole could have done with a slightly thicker construction, even if it sacrificed some scoring points in the weight category.
We were happily surprised by the performance of the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fibre in the comfort category, where the cork grips really shone through.
Their moulded design maintained grip during our test hikes and the comfort only improved as the hike went on – something we’ve come to love about cork grips.
Like the more premium brands, Hiker Hunger decided to include a foam portion below the cork handle for added comfort when navigating part of the trail that require you to choke down on the grip.
This was a nice touch and gave the pole a really premium feel, similar to some of the more established brands in the industry.
The pole is seriously light at only 0.93lbs (425g) and is by far the cheapest pole under 0.99lbs (450g) – lighter than its doppelganger the Foxelli HOG1 Carbon Fibre.
As mentioned before, this lack of weight does come at a price. The durability of the pole could be vastly improved with a thicker (and therefore heavier) carbon weave in the shaft, and in our view the gain in durability would more than offset the heavier weight of the pole.
If we’re just considering weight, the pole was one of the best performers in this year’s line-up and provides hikers with a really affordable carbon pole that has the benefit of being ultra-light – once thought only to be a feature of premium poles.
Like the Foxelli pole, the pole from Hiker Hunger is telescoping, meaning it lagged behind the tent-style poles in terms of portability and packable length.
At 24" (61cm), the pole is likely to be too long to fit into regular backpacks or daypacks for hikes, but should easily fit into checked baggage or duffel bags for longer periods of travel.
The lightness of the pole, however, means it can be used on longer hikes without the need for being portable.
The length of the pole doesn’t make it ideal for alpine climbs or for variable hiking where it needs to be packed away for portions of the hike, however it is suitable for those looking to day hike.
Hiker Hunger chucked in a load of handy attachments that come standard with the pole, including rubber tips, a snow basket and a trekking basket.
This improves the versatility of the pole as it can be used in light snow and on paved surfaces as well as the usual on-trail use.
Because of the its lack of durability, we wouldn’t recommend using the pole off-trail, so this limits its versatility somewhat. Overall, we were impressed by how many uses you can get out of this pole, especially for its reasonable price.