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Walking Stick?


Guest LoCache
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My father was an ardent arrow head hunter in the plains of Colorado. He always carried a pool cue he used for a walking stick and anti-rattlesnake talisman. He liked the taper and weight. Didnt matter to him if it was a touch crooked to shoot pool with, and he usually got em for nothing. I use an apple tree limb that I got off a tree that had been dead for a couple of years. Works fine, tougher than the hubs of hell. Removed the bark, rounded the large end for my hand, and brushed on a 50/50 mix of linseed oil and turpentine to waterproof it. I epoxied a 3 inch piece of copper pipe on the bottom end, around the wood, to keep it from splintering. Have about 10 years on it, and it just keeps getting better and better.

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Don't laugh, but I am cutting down an old broom stick to use as a walking stick. I've got some foam and athletic tape to put around it for a padded grip, and I probably have something around here that I could use for a wrist strap. It will be perfectly Arizabif-sized, and not give me fits if I lose/break it.

 

[This message was edited by Arizabif on July 25, 2002 at 09:35 AM.]

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quote:
Originally posted by Arizabif:

Don't laugh, but I am cutting down an old broom stick to use as a walking stick. I've got some foam and athletic tape to put around it for a padded grip, and I probably have something around here that I could use for a wrist strap. It will be perfectly Arizabif-sized, and not give me fits if I lose/break it.


 

I made one for my daughter from an old broom stick. I found out that an old bicycle grip will fit nicley on the top end and that a crutch tip fits nicely on the bottom end.

 

... Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--

I took the one less traveled by, ...

 

unclerojelio

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Have in my back yard a Black Walnut tree. To make there to be more trees, the bush tailed fuzzys plant some of the nuts everywhere. As the trees grow up I take all the leaves off, but leave about four on the top. The next year I do the same. They grow 2 1/2 to 3 feet a year, straight and slim. After three yrs, I cut it to length, 6 1/2 ft. Use it for a yr or two with the bark on, then remove the bark and coat with sanding sealer, or a bees wax type of finish. Also works great to make a lean-to or pup-tent, (remember them?), type cover with the plastic (everyone carries with them) to get out of the rain or camp on those 15 mile caches. The chicks love it and it works for me. icon_smile.gif

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Have in my back yard a Black Walnut tree. To make there to be more trees, the bush tailed fuzzys plant some of the nuts everywhere. As the trees grow up I take all the leaves off, but leave about four on the top. The next year I do the same. They grow 2 1/2 to 3 feet a year, straight and slim. After three yrs, I cut it to length, 6 1/2 ft. Use it for a yr or two with the bark on, then remove the bark and coat with sanding sealer, or a bees wax type of finish. Also works great to make a lean-to or pup-tent, (remember them?), type cover with the plastic (everyone carries with them) to get out of the rain or camp on those 15 mile caches. The chicks love it and it works for me. icon_smile.gif

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it seems more than one has found a "beaver made" stick and thought it was a good walking stick, so that settles it. im gonna catch me some beavers and open up a walking stick factory. they do the work, i get the money. i hope they dont decide to form a union though, and i wonder what kind of employment laws apply to them. i can see it now, high quality, tooth made by beavers, walking sticks. i'll be a millionare in no time....

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I have a titanium knee and will soon be getting another. I never did backpack or do great distances but even a 5 mile stroll is easier with a stick. Not to mention it's great poking/lifting/etc capabilities. I'm lost when I head out without it.

 

For sentimental reasons I currently use a beautiful shaped wooden one my dad made years ago. It has emblems from castles/walks he did while in Germany and I, like a posted way at the top of the list, feel I had a bit of dad with me when I go out. BUT...I'm getting ready to try to ski pole with shock variety. Sounds to me like a fine investment in comfort

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I've been high altitude mountaineering, rock climbing, backpacking, and hiking for over 40 years. My knees are shot, my hips hurt, and I just can't stop this foolish movin' around in the outdoors. icon_wink.gif I've been using some form of walking stick for years.....

 

First off it will reduce the stress on your back, knees & legs. The walking stick provides extra power & balance while taking pressure off your back & hips going uphill. While going downhill by reducing shock on knees.

 

Next it helps with your balance and maneuverability! Crossing creeks, streams, or rivers. When traversing steep hillsides (especially crossing scree), carrying heavy loads, or crossing downed trees.

 

And it also has a bunch of other handy uses it can be used a pole for a tarp, prop up your pack. You can lean on to rest. How about those bushwhacks with tons of brush. On those seldom traveled trails you can push aside spider webs.

 

Plus in places like Nepal it came in handy for those sometimes nasty dogs. So I guess you could say you can use it for self defense. icon_cool.gif

 

Here's a real good web link that provides a good discussion and tips.....

http://www.backpacking.net/walkstik.html

 

Enjoy!

--Rich

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I've been high altitude mountaineering, rock climbing, backpacking, and hiking for over 40 years. My knees are shot, my hips hurt, and I just can't stop this foolish movin' around in the outdoors. icon_wink.gif I've been using some form of walking stick for years.....

 

First off it will reduce the stress on your back, knees & legs. The walking stick provides extra power & balance while taking pressure off your back & hips going uphill. While going downhill by reducing shock on knees.

 

Next it helps with your balance and maneuverability! Crossing creeks, streams, or rivers. When traversing steep hillsides (especially crossing scree), carrying heavy loads, or crossing downed trees.

 

And it also has a bunch of other handy uses it can be used a pole for a tarp, prop up your pack. You can lean on to rest. How about those bushwhacks with tons of brush. On those seldom traveled trails you can push aside spider webs.

 

Plus in places like Nepal it came in handy for those sometimes nasty dogs. So I guess you could say you can use it for self defense. icon_cool.gif

 

Here's a real good web link that provides a good discussion and tips.....

http://www.backpacking.net/walkstik.html

 

Enjoy!

--Rich

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I'd say also good for the rare [i only hope so] snake encounter icon_eek.gif

Kathy in WV

 

quote:
Originally posted by LoCache:

Ok, this is probably going to seem WAY off topic for Geocaching, but I assure you it ties in....

 

When I am Geocaching in rougher terrain, or hilly terrain, I like to pick up the nearest old tree branch to use as a walking stick. This has worked great for me, but I decided I wanted one that I keep, but haven't found any wood that was very nice for this purpose. There are plenty of places you can purchase all sorts of cool hand carved walking sticks, but I would prefer to make my own because they never seem to be the right size for me (I am tall).

 

SO....does anyone out there have any ideas, suggestions or knowledge on how to go about obtaining a good stick for walking stick purposes and any knowledge of how to preserve them. Types of wood, sealant to use if any? That type of stuff.

 

Thanks!

Geo

 

http://www.geopolitan.net/geotrex

 

Kathy in WV

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I'd say also good for the rare [i only hope so] snake encounter icon_eek.gif

Kathy in WV

 

quote:
Originally posted by LoCache:

Ok, this is probably going to seem WAY off topic for Geocaching, but I assure you it ties in....

 

When I am Geocaching in rougher terrain, or hilly terrain, I like to pick up the nearest old tree branch to use as a walking stick. This has worked great for me, but I decided I wanted one that I keep, but haven't found any wood that was very nice for this purpose. There are plenty of places you can purchase all sorts of cool hand carved walking sticks, but I would prefer to make my own because they never seem to be the right size for me (I am tall).

 

SO....does anyone out there have any ideas, suggestions or knowledge on how to go about obtaining a good stick for walking stick purposes and any knowledge of how to preserve them. Types of wood, sealant to use if any? That type of stuff.

 

Thanks!

Geo

 

http://www.geopolitan.net/geotrex

 

Kathy in WV

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Consider Chinese Elm. It is a trashy tree, draws elm beetles, grows like a weed, and makes nice straight sticks. I grubbed one out of the backyard and saved the walking stick sized stuff. The bark strips fairly easily and the wood is soft enough to work but sturdy enough to hold up under a little abuse. All-in-all a great use for a trashy tree! icon_biggrin.gif

 

icon_eek.gif Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life, son!

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Consider Chinese Elm. It is a trashy tree, draws elm beetles, grows like a weed, and makes nice straight sticks. I grubbed one out of the backyard and saved the walking stick sized stuff. The bark strips fairly easily and the wood is soft enough to work but sturdy enough to hold up under a little abuse. All-in-all a great use for a trashy tree! icon_biggrin.gif

 

icon_eek.gif Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life, son!

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My wife took a couple hikes to convince me, but boy, do I EVER like them! Two fancy aluminum REI types. Since starting hiking / Geocaching, have lost 25 lbs, and my back (and the rest of me) is in better shape than in the last 10+ years). Could NOT have done it without the sticks! Takes pressure off the lower back, spreads the load, better balance, etc.

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I like to take pictures and one day I bought a sturdy monopod that had a hand strap. I use this now as a walking stick and then as a camera monopod when I get there! As I'm sure others have pointed out you can also use your choice of walking stick to poke around before reaching your hand into some dark place to pull out the cache box.

 

-----------

Bill

Jeeps Only!

http://www.jeepsonly.com

------------------------

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So, after reading this entire thread I've still got a few questions on walking sticks...

 

Up till now I (Kite) have been using a stick I picked up one day while hiking, but I'm now motivated to buy a nice aluminum (or titanium, or whatever) stick, since we're about to go on vacation and I don't think I'll be able to get my big stick in the luggage. Obviously, I'm going to need something that collapses down pretty small (I think I'd want this anyway, so I can stow it when I need the use of both my hands).

 

I've been doing some comparison shopping, and there's a bewildering variety of features available. I know I want a very comfortable grip (that's my stick's one flaw, even when I wrap the handle in cloth) and I don't want a rubber tip (I use my stick while stream-crossing, and have heard that rubber is more likely to slip when wet than a carbide tip). What I don't know is if 'anti-shock' properties are worth extra money, or if the 'positive angle' sticks actually do any good. Any opinions on those features would be welcome, as would any suggestions of a stick you use and like that fits my needs. Are there brands of walking stick to seek out/avoid in particular?

 

As I said, I'll keep researching on my own, just wondering what some of the common wisdom might be.. the kind of stuff you don't find on sites attempting to sell you things, where they're probably not going to mention the downside of this or that. Thanks for any advice.

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Hi Kite & Hawkeye:

You don't have to choose one kind of pole tip: you can have both rubber & sharp. Ours from REI are great (you probably have an REI in San Diego). They came with a cheapo shipping protector (tooos that), but as an accessory, you can buy nice snap on rubber tips. Right by the poles, or ask. Rubber tips good for sidewalks, roads, or solid bedrock (only used them once for that). No good on anything loose, and sure no good in a creek! Pointy in a creek the way to go. Look for carbide tips (very hard stuff, harder than steel). Love mine!

Klemmer

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quote:
Originally posted by Klemmer:

Ours from REI are great (you probably have an REI in San Diego).


 

I second the ones from REI... I snagged a pair for $69 (I think) and it makes rock scrambling easy. I've used mine quite a bit and the tips are still as sharp as the day I got em. They saved my *** coming down (miles) the side of a hill that was easily a perfect 45 this last weekend, and I saved myself once sliding down a rock that would've easily been a hospital job. Not only are they great for going up, but excellent coming down in rought terrain... Something a wooden stick wouldn't have helped... BTW, I only use one, and collapse it and hang it from my pack when not used. Very handy...

 

geosig.jpg

Contents Under Pressure...

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That is to say I found a nice lodgepole pine sapling (if that's the right term). It was about 10 feet tall and perfectly straight except a slight curve at the bottom (which is now the top of the walking stick). It's about 2 inches in diameter at the wide end and 3/4 of an inch at the narrow end. I broke it off to about 7 feet in the field and took it home. Let me clarify that, I didn't cut it down or anything, it was lying in an old pile of loggin scrap and had been there for quite a while as it was extremly dry.

 

At home I cut it down to length (about 6.5 feet) and clipped off all the branches. Then I sanded the entire thing smooth and gave it a couple coats of stain. After it was completely dry I gave it a final coat of sealer and a light sanding.

 

It works great and looks even better.

 

----

Duct tape is like the Force. It has a light side and a dark side, and it holds the universe together.

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We went to REI this weekend and ended up with a pair of titanium Leki poles. I (Kite)am really glad we tried out a bunch before we bought anything -- I found rubber grips to be unbearable. I know you're not supposed to have a death grip on the pole, but just touching the rubber grips a little, they didn't feel good. Sticky, sweat-inducing, uncomfortable. I wasn't crazy about the cork grips either, but the poles we got have cork with a bit of foam on it and they feel great. I liked the positive angle, but it only came on really expensive poles.. poles which also had shock absorption, which I decided against because of the annoying clicky noise and the extra weight. The springiness itself felt a bit odd, though no doubt I'd have gotten used to it. Just decided it wasn't worth $50. Plus, the poles we got collapse down to 24", so packing them for a trip will be easy. Carbide tips (and we got rubber feet for use on concrete). Haven't had a chance to go geocaching with them yet, but playing around in the store they felt pretty good. They'll no doubt be better than the stick I've been using (it's been useful, but it's heavy and uncomfortable to hold. the titanium sticks, in comparison, are weightless).

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Now that Fall is just around the corner, the spiders are out in force here in northern Illinois. Seems like they've strung webs between EVERY tree, and after a cache hunt I end up with web in my hair, face, eyes, mouth, etc. The webs usually include an assortment of live and dead critters, too. At this time of year, I walk through the woods waving a stick in front of me to brush aside the nearly invisible strands.

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I used to use any 'ol stick I could find, but last year my wife gave me a pait of EMS Alpinist trekking poles. Now I can't imagine hiking without them. Regular sticks are very helpful, but a nice cork handle that is shaped for the hand is very nice, and more importantly, the wrist straps are the best. When properly adjusted, they take all the strain off the hands and I just don't get as fatigued as without them. Slippery downhills are no problem, and long uphills are much easier. Hauling a good size pack in a breeze with the extra support, and uneven terrain in much easier to traverse with the extra balance added by the poles. I suggest to everyone who is interested in hiking to get a good pair of trekking poles - you won't be sorry (and your knees will love you for it icon_smile.gif )

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I used to use any 'ol stick I could find, but last year my wife gave me a pait of EMS Alpinist trekking poles. Now I can't imagine hiking without them. Regular sticks are very helpful, but a nice cork handle that is shaped for the hand is very nice, and more importantly, the wrist straps are the best. When properly adjusted, they take all the strain off the hands and I just don't get as fatigued as without them. Slippery downhills are no problem, and long uphills are much easier. Hauling a good size pack in a breeze with the extra support, and uneven terrain in much easier to traverse with the extra balance added by the poles. I suggest to everyone who is interested in hiking to get a good pair of trekking poles - you won't be sorry (and your knees will love you for it icon_smile.gif )

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One more thing before I shut my mouth. With trekking poles it is very important to adjust the wrist straps properly. They are not just there to keep you from dropping the poles - they are an intergral part of the poles benefits. The straps are designed to take a majority of the weight applied to the pole - you should hardly be holding the grip at all. With the straps set properly, they will distribute the weight around your hand and wrist evenly and allow you to swing the the pole with your stride. A great site for proper pole use can be found here - http://www.personal.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/poles.htm

 

Hope this helps!!

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After visiting the renaisance festival in Sterling NY. I noticed a lot of people walking around with these sticks. When returning home I decided to start carving my own wood spirits,owls etc. So far these look really great. I prefer working with cedar and yellow birch wich I collect on my woodlots. These make great gifts to my friends that I enjoy giving away and everyone enjoy very much receiving. Now i'll have to try them out someday.

 

742_900.jpg

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After using branches and pvc for walkng sticks, I first tested a pair of REI aluminum trekking poles. Later th Leki Super Makalu Cortec poles, with cambered handgrips, were a winning recommendation!

Using the angled handgrips made a huge difference in body mechanics and wrist comfort, compared to straight handrips.

Learning how to use and adjust trekking poles properly does takes some practice. Wrist straps take weight and let the grip relax, for instance.

 

How to use a Trekking Pole

http://www.trekpoles.com/howtouse.htm

 

The main complaints: clicking sound from the shock absorbers and having to stow/unstow and adjust (length) when changing from uphill to downhill (stow on flat).

 

The main pluses are: feels like cheating walking up a hill along wth getting the upper body involved in a balanced workout. Reduced knee strain and increased stability.

----------

Greenjeens

 

[This message was edited by Greenjeens on October 27, 2002 at 12:41 AM.]

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I've haven't used a walking stick but on occasion have used a branch for a little bit of steadiness. An old injury flared up a few weeks ago and rather than miss some hunting, I grabbed my old cane that I used during rehab. Found that it really helps to have that turn in the handle for hooking on trees and such when ascending and decending hills. It must look rather hokey, this big,old guy in the woods with a backpack and a cane! Time to find the right walking stick!

 

Steve Bukosky N9BGH

Waukesha Wisconsin

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I had a cane for a walking stick. It was just one of the bent wood type.

Well the cache was 1/2 way down a steep slope

and of course I was on the top so I started down.

I slipped on the leaves and was on my way

down on my backside when I jabbed by cane/walking stick into the ground to stop me. Well It snapped in half

had I kept going and landed on the broken part sticking out of the ground who knows if I would be here to write this. ... So the next one will be REAL strong.... I maymake one out of metal, we'll see.

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