Being in Sweden this summer Dani had a chance to test out these lightweight Leki poles, designed specifically for women – the Micro Vario Carbon ladies. In this area of Sweden the terrain is very harsh and you cross rocky and marshy terrain.
£144.95 from the Leki UK store
On the trek – testing the poles
The poles we tested on the trek had to deal with terrain that was harsh and rocky. Each step is one to be considered and having the poles made the load a little easier. The poles provided stability along the route meaning I could focus on my foot placement rather than my overall balance with the backpack.
Being made out of 100% pure carbon the poles are very light, only weighing in at 212 grams. When being used for hours on end, this lightness proved to be a great plus side. My hands and grip never got tired and they were light as a feather, I didn’t even feel like I was gripping anything. When climbing upwards and putting more weight on the poles, they felt really durable.
These poles are designed with a woman’s hand in mind and the Aergon designed edgeless handle make for a great grip. The grips feel very soft and spongy, which is nice on your hands and helps take the pressure off. The poles also come with a security strap, which is lightweight and breathable. Again this provided me with the knowledge that I wouldn’t drop my poles and allows for extra force to be put through the poles when climbing. After a while the straps do begin to rub a little, but after a long day of using them I had no blisters.
Folding system and clip
These poles have a genius folding system and they can be assembled in a matter of seconds when needed. I would advise you to test the folding system out before you go on a trek as many people, and I myself, have found it difficult to understand how they fit together. So, to help. I’ve written a quick step by step of how to do it.
The poles are attached by what look like a piece of plastic. These clip into each other. You then have to pull the top of the pole outwards until you see the silver pin click into place. This then makes the poles stable. You then have the adjust the length for your height and off you go.
What is great is that many people who have non-collapsible poles find it difficult to travel with them, but as these collapse so easily and are super lightweight they are great to travel with, even in a small day pack.
Tackling the rocks
The Leki Micro Carbon Vario poles have a great flex tip system at the bottom of the pole. These really took a bashing as the terrain was 100% rocks. This section of the pole feels really sturdy and was great when you needed to place it into more awkward gaps in the terrain.
The only downside I found to these poles was the height adjusting system. I am not sure if this was because I was on quite harsh rocky terrain or not, but the vibrations and usage loosened the clip quite a few times while hiking. This caused some slippage of the height adjustable sections when I placed my pole to the ground. This meant having to re-adjust the height quite a few times.
If you’re looking for a super lightweight trekking pole and you have the money to spend then I would say go for it. These poles were great on a multi day hike and really did take a bashing. I came out of it with no rubbing on my hands. The design aesthetics of the pole look great and the fact that they are collapsible is great so you can stow them away when not needed. This is a set of poles that I would definitely take out time and time again and they even come with their own little bag!
For more information on these poles and other Leki products please visit the Leki website.
|Grip||Aergon (Thermo Compact)
+ Thermo Mid
|Strap||Lock Security Strap (Skin)|
|Tube diameter||18|16|14|14|14 mm|
|Shaft material||100% Carbon (Pure)|
|Top||100% Carbon (Pure)|
|Lower part||100% Carbon (Pure)|
|Adjustment system||Speed Lock 2|
|Tip||Flex Tip (Short)|
|Length / Size||100-120 cm stufenlos verstellbar|
|Weight||212 g / Unit|
|Pack size||38 cm|