Updated: Feb 17, 2021
One thing I'm really enjoying as I attempt to grow my outdoor branding photography is learning about all the different companies out there! I love when websites can get me to the back story of the products' birth and how hard the creator worked to make a name for themselves. Each company, like people, is unique and meant for a specific purpose. Maybe most other people are just interested in reading what the products have to offer, but I want more! I love reading the company's mission statements to see if it aligns with mine: to inspire and encourage all people to get outdoors!
When I found Mons Peak IX at first glance, was intrigued by the name alone. I did some digging and learned that in Latin, 'mons' means mountain. Reading further, I found out that the entire company was named after a specific mountain in The Himalayas, now known as Kangchenjunga. Kangchenjunga is the 3rd highest mountain in the world, but has never been climbed out of respect and legend. How freaking cool. This mountain and the valleys nearby are considered some of the most scenic and natural ecosystems in the world. Immediately, I have a new destination to add to my bucketlist just by reading the back story of the company!
While Mons Peak IX offers a good variety of product, my interests were focused in on backpacks and trekking poles- two absolute essentials whenever hiking! When I received the Tiger Paw 7075 Trekking Poles and 40L Backpack and couldn't wait to share my experience with you! I want to scream from the rooftops how well-made this gear is!
I think it's kind of funny how little I see trekking poles whenever we're out hiking. I could go blue in the face talking about how much they have improved my trail experience. Not only do they help lessen the strain on your legs while hiking- for clumsy people like me, they can literally prevent tumbles, injury, and embarrassment! Trust me, I know from experience. I've written about it multiple times, but I fell and landed directly in mule poop in The Grand Canyon from a preventable trip! Those were pre trekking pole days and I'm so happy those days are behind me.
I was super excited when I received my Tiger Paw 7075 Trekking Poles in the mail. I had been using the Walmart aisle poles and as Colton and I have taken them on more challenging trails, they weren't holding up well anymore.
Just pulling the Mons Peak IX trekking poles out of the delivery box, I gasped at the quality I could tell they had by only looking at them! Colton gave me a big ole grin in agreement and asked if he could have them. Not today pal, not ever.
Length: 24.5-53.1 inches / 62-135 centimeters
Weight: 17.3 ounces / 490 grams per pair
These poles are telescoping, which is just a fancy word meaning they are collapsible. I love this aspect! In combination with them being super lightweight, they are easy to pack along for any trail!
What does 7075 mean?
Here I go with all the research again- I guess I'm just a curious person by nature! 7075 is a type of anodized aluminum. Anodized just means it's coated with a protective oxide layer. 7075 is the type of aluminum- actually one of the strongest aluminum alloys available. Mons Peak IX claims that 7075 is aircraft grade! I don't know about you, but I feel very confident in this equipment's strength if it's built from materials used in planes!
Products may be engineered from strong material and made to look cool, but if they're not easy to use- what's the point? Mons Peak IX's mission statement literally quotes that their products are "engineered for usefulness and comfort, balanced with minimalist mindset and affordability."
I may have done a few famous hikes with Colton, but I will probably never claim to be an expert hiker. Because of that truth, I appreciate a company and/or product that isn't complicated.
One thing I loved about these trekking poles was the simplicity of the finger-tightening nut. My other cheaper trekking poles required having a screwdriver handy to keep the extended poles from somewhat collapsing when any weight was applied. At one point we kept them extended and held together with duck tape (definitely not ideal and not something I want to confess, but it's true). The universal purpose of trekking poles is to allow you to put weight on them to lessen the work of your legs. If either pole cannot withstand weight, they're basically useless. With Mons Peak IX poles, I can do all the tightening adjustments needed with my hands alone. And I feel very confident in these poles to withstand leaning on them for support through tougher hikes.
Another thing I appreciate in the design of these trekking poles are the silver pole markings. In the past I haven't really taken the time to ensure each pole is extended to the same measurements, instead I hold them out in front of me and eyeball it. I'm sure every hiker can admit to this in the past. With Mons Peak IX provided silver pole markings, I can easily visualize the measurements- no matter what lighting I'm in!
If you're not sure what height to set the poles at, start off by figuring out what's comfortable. Typically the elbow will make a 90 degree angle when the pole is adjusted to each person's specific height.
To actually adjust the height, there are 2 snap-click compression locks made of light weight anodized aluminum levers, steel hardware, and engineering polymer (located in red in the image below)
Finally, my favorite part of the trekking pole design is the cork and polymer combination hand grip. The hand grip is somewhat molded for comfort upon purchase, but the more and more miles hiked while using the poles creates a mold to the hiker's specific grip. It's super comfy and doesn't slip- even in high heat situations when hands are sweaty. I love a long desert hike, so I am grateful for this!
All in all, Mons Peak IX claims that The Tiger Paw 7075 Trekking Poles are designed for 4 season use and I believe it! The owner of the company gushed proudly in an email to me that these poles went on a successful Antarctica expedition!
Purchasing the poles includes carbide tips, rubber tips, performance baskets, and snow baskets. If you don't know what I'm talking about, these are the different tips attachable to the bottom of the poles- dependent on what kind of terrain is being hiked.
Different Trekking Pole Attachments:
Carbide or steel tips provide traction for the hiker, especially on icy trails.
These tips are mainly provided as a means to extent the "life" of your gear. Keep rubber tips on the bottom of trekking poles to protect the carbide while the poles are not in use. Rubber tips are also useful when wanting to lower the impact onto the ground itself when hiking.
A basket is a circular removable attachment. They are frequently placed on the pole by feeding the pole through a hole in the middle of the basket. The end of each pole becomes wider and prevents the pole from sinking into muddy or snowy trails.
Tips for Using Trekking Poles
Don't Overthink It
Most people take to using trekking poles rather quickly. I never really read up on the gear before purchasing and naturally just supported myself with the poles however I felt I should when I started hiking.
While walking, people naturally swing the arm opposite of the foot stepping forward. This is also true with trekking poles- right foot = left pole; left foot = right pole. Falling out of rhythm can happen from time to time. This is easy to fix by continuing to walk while lifting the poles up off the ground for a moment.
When climbing up a hill or inclining steps, trekking poles sometimes remind me of the good ole days when I had crutches. I've been through my fair share of leg injuries, so I've actually gotten pretty good at those over the years. When climbing upward, move both poles forward at the same time prior to stepping up. The placement of the poles should be about where you will end up when stepping forward. Use this placement as a means of momentum to pull your body forward.
When hiking down steps or down a steep area, place both poles ahead of you to support your body prior to moving downward. Just like walking down hills without trekking poles, gravity will naturally pull you down the hill. Trekking poles can be used to prevent this pull from causing you to tumble down the hill entirely. It still could happen, no judgement- I've done it.
My descriptions may seem confusing, but I promise if you practice even a little, you'll see the benefits of having a set of trekking poles handy. Using them correctly will probably occur naturally if you simply focus on how the poles can support you. Trekking poles have been extremely helpful to Colton and I on the longer hikes and challenging terrain.
The quality of Mons Peak IX Tiger Paws 7075 Trekking Poles are breathing new life into my love of trekking poles. I don't think I fully knew the extent of support and confidence I could have hiking uneven paths before getting this pair. I am very happy with the product and truly believe if you're looking for a great set, you should look no further than Mons Peak IX!
My second obsession from Mons Peak IX is their 40L Backpack. There are so many different factors that makes this backpack unique and a useful companion for all of my outdoor activities!
Ultralight and Adjustable
There's so many unknowns that can occur on a hiking trail. I feel at ease when I am able to pack a bag for the adventure. I am (at the very least) always carrying extra water, food, my camera, and some kind of protection with me on the trail. The weight of these objects can add up throughout long/strenuous hikes, so I need a backpack light enough to not add to the stress on my back.
Mons Peak IX 40L Backpack is perfect for the job, weighing an ultralight 12 ounces. That's not even 1 pound, people! Colton and I could've really benefited from this bag on our Grand Canyon hike- I swear Colton was carrying at least 50 pounds over his shoulders!
There are loops at the bottom of the bag; an easy place to store trekking poles.
The backpack also features a sternum strap and multiple adjustment options to tailor to the specific hiker using it. I appreciate this design so Colton (having a much larger frame than me) can take advantage of the comfort of this backpack, too!
I even appreciate the adjustment straps over the bottle carriers on each side. With these adjustable straps, I can ensure my thinner water bottles fit snugly and don't make noises as they bounce around with each of my steps. As someone with a short fuse for repetitive sounds, this feature was highly praised when spotted!
Packable, Versatile, and Waterproof
Most backpacks are simple and not made for multipurpose use. When not in use, they take up space. We've accumulated a few over the years and the storage space adds up. Not only is this backpack packable, it also is designed for flexibility with an adjustable roll at the top. It can go from 25 to 40 liters in no time!
While I'm not a rock climber and probably never will be (trust me, I've tried), this is the only bag on the market with horizontal daisy chains- proving yet again how useful it could be to any kind of adventurer.
I also love that Mons Peak IX created a bag that is packable. This bag can fold into a 8 x 4 x 2 inch drawstring carrier. It is an ideal size to have on hand for a multitude of different occasions and small enough to keep in the car at all times! I like to keep a hiking backpack in the back of my Jeep so I'm ready to explore whenever nature comes calling. I love that I can be confidentially ready for adventure wherever I am!
This bag has already been dubbed my designated kayak bag. While it isn't submersible, it is waterproof. I keep it at my feet while kayaking down rivers and lakes with all of my adventure supplies tucked away safely.
Durable 210 Ripstop Nylon
There's nothing worse than hiking through a trail that hasn't been blazed. My skin immediately starts crawling with the thought of potential bugs hitching a ride onto me. I also hate having to dodge overgrown tree limbs- especially thorns and briers sticking out just begging to puncture my skin. With worrying about keeping myself safe, I don't want to fret over my gear holding up. Coated in urethane, this nylon fabric repels water and resists rips and tears. It truly seems as though Mons Peak IX really thought of everything when designing this backpack!
All in all, in speaking from my personal experience with these products, I am amazed by the quality. Like I said before, just in my initial glance at both the backpack and trekking poles alone, I knew I had stepped up my trail game. I feel a new found confidence at the thought of taking on more challenging hikes as Colton and I's hobby continues to grow. Get yours and hike on with Mons Peak IX!