Hiking poles. Do you bring them on your Grand Canyon river trip, or do you leave them at home? Personally, I LOVE using them – especially on downhill hikes. They absorb a tremendous amount of pressure. My knees and back always thank me for using hiking poles, after a long day of hiking.
We strongly recommend using hiking poles on any of our trips that require a hike into our out of Grand Canyon. They make a big difference, and there isn’t much of a learning curve. A few tips that may help include:
- Adjust your hiking poles so that your arm makes a 90* bend at your elbow when the hiking poles are resting on the ground near your feet.
- Adjust the wrist strap so that you can loosen your grip on the pole. You’ll want to put your hand into the strap by going up under the strap and then grabbing the pole and cinching the strap fairly tightly
- When hiking uphill, play with shortening the poles by about 5-10 centimeters. Alternatively, when hiking downhill, try lengthening by 5-10 centimeters.
For our trips that travel the full length of Grand Canyon, and don’t require a hike in or out at the midway point. You’ll be going on daily side hikes. Those side hikes are as varied as can be. We can’t guess, in advance, which hikes you might be doing and whether or not you’ll want your hiking poles. If you use hiking poles regularly, and you really like using them, and if it’s easy for you to travel with them, go ahead and bring them. You might only bust them out once or twice on your trip, or you might not use them at all. And that’s OK.
Plan ahead if you are flying on a commercial flight. Most airlines require hiking poles to be in checked baggage, not carry-ons. Poles can be carried-on to our charter flights without issue.
There is a special storage area for hiking poles on our rafts. Your guides will keep them handy so that you can access them before a hike.
At the end of the day, it’s up to you. We’ll strongly encourage them on our Hike-In and Hike-Out trips but, on all other trips, you do you. Bring ’em if ya like ’em.