Do You Need Trekking Poles To Climb Kilimanjaro?

Do You Need Trekking Poles To Climb Kilimanjaro? Why Are They Needed When Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro? Does it represent a viable approach for raising the Kilimanjaro success rate? Do Fit Individuals Require Trekking Poles When Climbing Kilimanjaro? Numerous inquiries are on our minds, but the basic answer is yes. The extra legs you employ to climb Mount Kilimanjaro are trekking poles. If you’re traveling on a lengthy walk, these poles will give you stability and support. The likelihood of success in reaching the summit rises by 25% when using trekking poles. Regardless of how fit you are, trekking poles need to be on your Kilimanjaro equipment list.

If you’ve ever trekked a significant distance or carried a large pack in the wilderness, you may be aware of the many advantages of using hiking sticks or trekking poles. Trekking poles are a necessary item on our list of equipment for everyone but seasoned hikers.

No matter your level of experience, we advise using trekking poles when climbing Mount Kilimanjaro. Trekking pole users have a significant advantage over non-users during the course of a protracted journey.


  • Trekking poles save energy.
  • Trekking poles provide balance and stability.
  • Trekking poles reduce the impact on your joints and feet.


The ability to conserve energy is the main advantage of trekking poles. How? They shift a portion of the weight from your legs to your arms. The weight on your feet is reduced just by making contact with the ground with the pole tips, and even more so by pressing down on them. You might also use the strength in your arms to move ahead. Simply put, employing poles makes your upper body work harder by involving it more. As a result, your lower body will exert less force, boosting your endurance. Although they are helpful on flat ground, poles are most handy when traveling uphill and downhill. You’ll be happy you got these!


Two more points of contact with the trail are provided by trekking poles. You can walk with better balance thanks to this. Despite the exceedingly well-maintained paths on Kilimanjaro, there are certain areas that require navigating through mud, boulders, and scree (loose gravel). Trekking poles give you more stability on slick, uneven ground.


An extended day of hiking puts a tremendous amount of strain on the ankles, knees, and hips. Trekking poles, as previously said, shift a portion of your weight from your legs to your arms and shoulders. Using poles, according to some, lessens the impact on your knees by 25%. Also, research has shown that utilizing trekking poles can lower the strain on your knees by up to 17 pounds while walking uphill and by 11 pounds when walking on flat surfaces. This is a considerable weight transfer, especially when you take into account the daily hikes that took several hours and the overall ascent.

In order to lessen the effort that would typically be placed on the joints and leg muscles when traveling downhill, the poles are used. As their bodies are already worn out from reaching the summit, most hikers who sustain injuries fall while going downhill. Trekking poles offer some level of safety by lessening the strain on your body and acting as a catch for your fall should you trip.


Trekking Pole Length

Typically, the trekking poles’ height should be adjusted to match the height of your elbow. So, your arm should be bent 90 degrees when you are gripping the pole’s handle and standing on level ground.

Reduce the length of your poles by a few inches if you’re climbing a steep incline. This prevents you from dragging the pole when moving it forward. A shorter pole will make it anatomically simpler to increase your arm leverage. On the other hand, when going downhill, lengthen your poles by a few inches so that you can touch the ground with the tip without having to bend over or reach down.

It is preferable to put your trekking poles aside if you come across sections of the trail, like the Barranco Wall, where you might need to use your hands to grab on to boulders in order to ascend.

Do You Need Trekking Poles To Climb Kilimanjaro?
Do You Need Trekking Poles To Climb Kilimanjaro?


Adjust Wrist Straps: Pull the tension block out before adjusting the wrist straps. To tighten, pull the loose end; to loosen, pull the higher end of the section. Once you have reached the length you want, bring the tension block back inside.

Pole Length Adjustment: The pole’s length should be changed so that it must be 90 degrees from the elbow. Make sure the number is the same on the pole’s top and bottom segments.

The pole is tightened, and flip the clasp open to release it. Once you’ve found the ideal tension, adjust the screws. When you close the clasp, the pole should be able to sustain your weight without moving if the screw is snug enough.

Going uphill: The pole should be short for uphill walking so you can pull yourself. The poles should be closer to the body, and their tips should cross in front of the leading foot.

Walking downhill: The pole should be longer when walking downhill. While descending a hill, hold the pole’s tip in front of your feet.


Aluminum or composite materials are used to make modern trekking poles. Strong, long-lasting, and lightweight describe aluminum. Composite versions, which are predominantly made of carbon fiber, are more expensive but lighter than aluminum. Aluminum trekking poles, in our opinion, are suitable for most hiking conditions including the Kilimanjaro.

A collapsible, adjustable pole is preferable to a pole with a fixed length. Lever lock and twist lock are the two most common varieties of locking systems. Twist locks were once highly prevalent, but today lever lock systems are the key component. Lever locks secure the folded-in pole segments with external clips on the outside of the poles.

Instead of trying to pack and carry their own trekking poles on the airplane, we advise our guests to rent them for their ascent.


Hiking poles are not required but are highly recommended for your Kilimanjaro equipment list. The value of trekking poles in your accessory arsenal will become clear during the climb, and you’ll be glad you packed them along for the trip. Even if you are an expert hiker and trekker, we advise using trekking poles when climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.

While walking lengthy paths like this, you’ll notice an improvement in speed and comfort. Make sure you choose the trekking poles that are suitable for your Kilimanjaro climbing experience and that you are familiar with how to use them. When preparing for the Kilimanjaro climb, get in touch with Focus East Africa Tours to finalize the Kilimanjaro equipment list and add trekking poles!

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