The 9 Best Walking Sticks or Hiking Staffs to Buy in 2020

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Walking or hiking with a single walking stick, hiking staff, or pole can give you an extra point of stability. Many people like the convenience of a folding walking stick or telescoping walking stick. You can carry it in your pack or keep it handy in your vehicle in case you decide you want to use it. Features to look for include grip comfort, weight, adjustable height, folding for storage, camera mount, and options for the tips.

Many modern sticks are made from aluminum, but you may prefer a classic wooden stick. You have opportunities to order a custom wooden stick if you want it to reflect your personality and you don't want to make your own. Here are some good options.

Leki Wanderfreund Walking Staff

Leki Wanderfreund Walking Pole
Leki Wanderfreund Walking Pole. Courtesy of Amazon.com

If you prefer the cane grip on your walking stick, this telescoping walking stick is for you, and it includes an adjustable wrist strap.

The 3-section aluminum shaft telescopes from 24 to 47 inches to pack and to adjust to terrain and height. It weighs a little over 9 ounces. The Wanderfreund comes in regular and anti-shock models and a lightweight carbon fiber model.

Leki Sierra Speedlock Anti-shock Travel Staff

Leki Sierra Stick
Leki Sierra Stick. Courtesy of Amazon.com

The wood knob on the Leki Sierra is removable to expose a camera mount on this telescoping walking stick. It has a foam grip and a buckle strap.

This 3-section adjustable staff can change in length from 27 to 57 inches (69 centimeters to 145 centimeters), and it weighs 10.5 ounces. It comes with rubber and carbide tips, so you can take it from asphalt to the trail.

Brazos Traveler's Stick

Brazos Travelers Stick
Brazos Travelers Stick. Brazos Walking Sticks

If you like a wooden walking stick and would love one that fits into your pack or luggage, the Traveler's Stick is a great idea. It is made in the USA.

This natural oak hiking stick disassembles into three sections to store at 19 inches long each. It has a combination tip for use on pavement or trail (the first rubber tip is free, but spikes need to be purchased separately). You can have it engraved with custom text and your choice of font.

EarthTrekGear Folding Travel Pole

EarthTrekGear Folding Walking Pole
EarthTrekGear Folding Walking Pole. Courtesy of Amazon.com

EarthTrekGear has two sizes of these folding travel poles, one for tall people and one for shorter people. You can adjust the height five inches for each version.

They are economical poles suited for packing along and for travel. It folds to 12 inches and weighs 12 ounces.

Folstaf

Folstaf Volkstaf
Folstaf Volkstaf. Wendy Bumgardner ©

This folding walking stick is very convenient to take along on a walk, just in case you end up needing one. It's been used by many volkssport walkers for years.

It is an aluminum hiking stick that folds up (like a tent pole) to 10 inches for easy packing. It has a foam grip and camera mount. The drawback is the high price tag, but if it saves even one slip and fall, it will be worth its weight in gold.

Whistle Creek Walking Sticks

Whistle Creek Hickory Hiking Staff
Whistle Creek Hickory Hiking Staff. Courtesy of Amazon.com

When you want to go back to basics and get a wooden hiking stick, but one done right, Whistle Creek should be your stop.

They have over 30 styles of classic wooden hiking sticks to choose from in wood varieties such as hickory, sassafras, dogwood, cedar, ash, walnut, and more. Basic and fancy designs are available in all price ranges.

Brazos Walking Sticks and Canes

Brazos Walking Sticks
Brazos Walking Sticks. Brazos Walking Sticks

Brazos Walking Sticks has handcrafted walking sticks and canes made in Texas. Their most popular styles include simple sticks made of hickory, oak, or sassafras. You may need to purchase a strap separately depending on the cane.

They also have handcrafted cane-headed sticks. In addition, they go beyond the ordinary with exotic woods, colored wood, and one-of-a-kind sticks. Whether you want a plain stick or something unique, they can please you.

Western Wood Artist

western wood artist walking sticks
© William Jones / westernwoodartist.com

Bill Jones of Western Wood Artist crafts custom wooden walking sticks. He adds designs, inlays, knobs, straps, and feathers as desired. Different designs celebrate the life history of the owner, career, military service, etc.

Get creative and work with Bill to have a hiking stick that is personally meaningful to you.

Ms. Sticks Custom Hiking and Walking Sticks

hiking sticks and feet walking on trail
Peopleimages/E+/Getty Images

Ms. Sticks allows you to tell your life story with a custom walking stick from Ms. Sticks. Each stick is customized with symbols and items of importance to you.

These make a great gift for everyone from a new graduate to a thoughtful retirement gift. No matter what age, the happy wanderer will love a custom stick.

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  1. Bin Han Y, Jin Kwon I, Taek Lee D, Jin Hwang E, Kwang Kim J, Hyung Cho E. Effects of trekking pole use on metabolic cost in novice hikers on steep terrains. J Sports Sci. 2017;5:256-264. doi:10.17265/2332-7839/2017.05.004