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Reviews > Trekking Poles > Poles > Mons Peak IX Tiger Paw 7075 > Test Report by Brian Hartman

MONS PEAK IX TIGER PAW 7075 TREKKING POLES
TEST SERIES BY BRIAN HARTMAN
INITIAL REPORT
May 20, 2018

CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE FIELD REPORT
CLICK HERE TO SKIP TO THE LONG-TERM REPORT

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Brian Hartman
EMAIL: bhart1426ATyahooDOT com
AGE: 50
LOCATION: Westfield, Indiana
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 5' 9" (1.75 m)
WEIGHT: 155 lb (65.80 kg)

I have been backpacking for over 25 years throughout Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and most recently in Western USA. In addition to backpacking I enjoy family camping with my wife and kids and being outdoors in general. I would describe myself as a mid weight backpacker. I use fairly light weight equipment and gear but still like to bring more than the bare essentials with me while on the trail.


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS


Manufacturer: Mons Peak IX
Year of Manufacture: 2018
Manufacturer's Website: https://www.monspeakix.com/
MSRP: US $94.95
Listed Weight: 17.3 oz per pair (490 g)
Measured Weight: 17.6 oz (498 g)
Length: 24.5 - 53.1 in (62 - 135 cm)

Other Details:
Shock Absorbers: No
Basket Style: Performance Baskets plus Snow Baskets
# of Sections: 3
Locking Mechanism: Snap-Click Compression Locks
7075 Anodized Aluminum
Cork and Polymer Hand Grips
Adjustable Wrist Straps
Carbide Tips
Rubber Tip Protectors
Made in China


INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

IMAGE 2 The Mons Peak IX Tiger Paw 7075 trekking poles (hereafter called trekking poles or Tiger Paws) arrived in a plain rectangular box.  The box was about what I expected in terms of size and weight as I had researched the poles ahead of time and knew their specifications.  After removing the poles from their shipping box, I found them to be in new condition and well designed. They are made of 7075 aircraft grade aluminum that has been anodized to make it harder, more durable, and less likely to corrode.  The poles are jet black in color and have the manufacturer's logo and the words 'Tiger Paw 7075' laser marked in silver on the side of them.  The top of the poles, baskets, and tips are also black while the compression locks are red, and the cork grips are "whatever color cork is".  Overall, the poles make a great first impression.  I really like the color combination and would say they look sharp and well-refined or high-class as far as trekking poles go.  The cork grips are contoured, and they just happen to be the perfect length and diameter for my hands.  The poles were collapsed into three sections when they are arrived, with each section measuring approximately 18 inches (46 cm).  The height of the poles is adjusted via two snap-click compression locks that allow them to telescope inside of each other.  Silver markings on the sides of the telescoping sections list the total height of the poles in inches as well as centimeters.  The locks are comprised of lightweight anodized aluminum levers, threaded steel rods and nuts, and polymer rings that compress around the pole sections to keep them from collapsing once tightened.  The nuts have knurled sides which should make it easier to tighten and loosen them.

The Tiger Paw 7075 is one of three trekking poles that Mons Peak IX has added to its product portfolio.  What makes these poles standout, according to the manufacturer is 1) their rugged pole design, which use aircraft grade aluminum for strength and durability 2) their snap-click compression locks, which are lightweight and easy-to-use and finally 3) their cork and polymer hand grips, which are comfortable to grip during long trail days.


READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

A small hang tag was attached to the Tiger Paw trekking poles. It listed their length and weight as well as the manufacture's website.  Online Mons Peak noted that the poles were designed and built for 4 season use with emphasis on ruggedness, ease-of-use, strength, and value.  Pole maintenance is as simple as wiping them down after use and allowing them to dry completely before putting them away.

TRYING THEM OUT

I took the Tiger Paws to a local park for a quick test and found them to be comfortable and easy to use.  I had no problem fine tuning them to the proper height and after a few quick adjustments of the compression locks, they stayed exactly where I set them.  While hiking I switched between the carbide tips and rubber caps and found that both were effective, the carbide tip more so on gravel and dirt, while the rubber tips came in handy on the sections of trail that were paved.  At the end of my hike I simply collapsed the poles to their folded position and set them in the backseat of my car.   One thing I noticed upon initial inspection of the poles, is that one of the cork grips has an obvious crack in it that extends up from the bottom of the grip.  The crack is deep and approximately 0.5 in (1.3 cm) in length.  I will continue to monitor this situation as I'm concerned it may open up further and ruin the grip or allow water and dirt to get in which could create other problems.

IMAGE 3 IMAGE 4 IMAGE 5

 
One thing I did not do during my brief hike was adjust the wrist straps.  Out of habit I simply gripped right over the top of them.  Once I get these poles on the trail I will be curious to see how well the straps work and if they cause any discomfort or abrasions as the nylon webbing rubs on the backs of my hands and wrists.

   

SUMMARY

The Tiger Paw trekking poles are light weight and compact but even more important, they appear to be well-crafted and durable.  I look forward to putting them through rigorous testing on my trip out West. This concludes my Initial Report for the Tiger Paw trekking poles. I will post a Field Report in approximately two months so please check back then to see how well they fared. In the meantime, thanks to Mons Peak IX and BackpackGeartest.org for the opportunity to test these poles.

This concludes my Initial Report for the ColdPruf Merino wool base layers.


FIELD REPORT

July 29, 2018


FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

IMAGE 1During the past two months I hiked approximately 27 mi (44 km) with the Tiger Paw trekking poles.  I logged these miles via a combination of overnight backpacking trips and day hikes.  My first overnight trip was to the Hoosier National Forest where I spent two days hiking on mostly established trails.  Temperatures ranged from 66 to 76 F (19 to 24 C) with light winds and mostly sunny skies.  The terrain was hilly, and the hard-packed dirt trails were soggy from rain that was falling intermittently throughout the day.  While there I hiked 12 miles (19 km) through dense forests that occasionally opened up to views of Lake Monroe, the largest lake in Indiana at over 10,000 acres.  Elevations ranged from 550 ft (168 m) to 790 ft (241 m).  My second overnight trip was to Southeastern Indiana (IN) near Oldenburg where temperatures were ideal with daytime highs of 72 F (22 C) and overnight lows in the mid 60s F (18 C).  I hiked approximately 6 mi (9.7 km) on this trip.  In addition to these trips I went on several day hikes in Central Indiana to complete my testing.

Location: Hoosier National Forest
Type of trip: On-trail hiking
Distance: 12 mi (19 km)
Length of trip: Two nights
Backpack weight: 31 lb (14 kg)
Conditions: Overcast with intermittent rain showers
Precipitation: 0.3 in (0.76 cm)
Temperature range: 66 to 76 F (19 to 24 C)

Location: SE Indiana
Type of trip: Off-trail hiking
Distance: 6 mi (9.7 km)
Length of trip: Two nights
Backpack weight: 34 lb (17.7 kg)
Conditions: Mostly sunny
Precipitation: None
Temperature range: 66 F to 72 F (18 to 22 C)

Location: Various parks in Central Indiana
Type of trip: On-trail hiking
Distance: 10 mi (16 km)
Length of trip: Multiple day trips
Backpack weight: 9 lb (4 kg)
Conditions: Hot and humid.  It rained on two of my day hikes.
Precipitation: 0.4 in (1.0 cm)
Temperature range: Varied from 84 to 92 F (29 to 33 C)

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

The Tiger Paws performed well during the past two months of Field Testing.  They were easy to setup, comfortable to use, and proved to be strong and durable.  I adjusted them per the manufacturer’s recommendations so that my elbows were bent at 90 degrees while standing up straight and gripping the poles.  When not using the trekking poles, which wasn’t very often, I collapsed them and strapped them to the outside of my pack.  Most of the time, however, they were in my hands, as the places I hiked were hilly and occasionally muddy and slippery.

IMAGE 2IMAGE 3

Performance: The Tiger Paws did a great job keeping me upright and stable in all kinds of terrain, including slippery trails, steep hillsides, rocky creek beds, and even when hiking off-trail through brush and down muddy hillsides.  In fact, they were ideal for off-trail hiking as I used the poles to push aside briars and thorns so my legs and arms didn’t get cut up.  They also helped me make it across several deep creeks without getting soaked because I was able to plant the poles in the water to balance myself while stepping across the rocks which were slippery and often lose.  The closest I came to falling though was when I was hiking off-trail and tried to descend a steep muddy hillside to avoid some barbed wire that was blocking my path.  When I lost traction on the sheer slope and my feet started sliding out beneath me, the poles kept me balanced so that I was able to stay vertical and glissade down the hill rather than land on my butt.

IMAGE 4Comfort / Fit: The cork hand grips were easy to grasp and comfortable to hold onto for hours at a time.  My hands never slipped off the grips and there was plenty of cushion to prevent hot spots and blisters despite the fact that I worked the poles hard while hiking both uphill and downhill.  One thing that wasn’t comfortable though, was the wrist straps.  Although the nylon webbing was sturdy and I doubt it would ever break, it just wasn’t comfortable, as it rubbed against my skin throughout the day.  I would like to see a piece of soft fabric sewn over their straps to ease the friction from the constant rubbing that occurs when using trekking pole straps.  Of course, it didn’t help that the backs of my hands were sunburned from the previous day.  As for fit, the poles had plenty of length and fit my height just fine.  Adjusting the height of the poles was easy to do with the snap-click compression locks, and once locked, the poles never slipped.  Regarding weight, the Tiger Paws 7075 weren’t ultra-lightweight but they also weren’t overly heavy.  I never felt like they were slowing me down or I was burning a lot of energy by using them.

Durability / strength: During the past two months the poles were quite durable.  I had no issues with them and am actually quite impressed with the grade of aluminum that was used in their construction.  According to Mons Peak, it is 7075 which is also known as aircraft grade aluminum, known for its strength.  The compression locks proved to be very reliable
.  Once tightened, they didn't slip and were easy to adjust.  On a down note, the crack in the one cork hand grip opened up slightly so after getting home I coated that area with a thinned down solution of Elmer’s glue, which hopefully will prevent it from getting worse.  Of final note, the pole tips are still in good shape despite the fact that I used them on gravel in one of the parks.  They have normal wear as due to baskets, which saw lots of abuse as they caught caught up in weeds and vines.


SUMMARY

The Mons Peak Tiger Paw 7075 trekking poles have lived up to their manufacturer’s claim of being rugged, easy to use, strong and a good value.  They are built tough and yet they are comfortable to use on extended mileage backpacking trips.  I started using trekking poles eight years ago, and immediately saw the benefits.  Since then I take them with me whenever I go backpacking.

This concludes my Field Report for the Tiger Paw trekking poles.  Please come back in two months to read my final report on these poles.  In the meantime, thanks to Mons Peak and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to test these poles. 
 








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