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Foxelli HOG1 Carbon Fiber Review

The Carbon Fiber trekking poles are an inexpensive carbon, cork handled pole that come with plenty of attachments.
Foxelli Trekking Poles
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Price:  $70 List | $59.97 at Amazon
Pros:  Cheapest carbon pole available, cork handles, loads of attachments
Cons:  Not durable, locking mechanisms aren't so great
Manufacturer:   Foxelli
By Graham Williams ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Oct 19, 2017
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69
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#13 of 18
  • Comfort - 20% 7
  • Weight - 20% 8
  • Locking and Adjustability - 15% 6
  • Packed Size - 15% 8
  • Durability - 15% 5
  • Versatility - 15% 7

Our Verdict

The Foxelli HOG1 Carbon Fiber poles are one of the less expensive carbon fiber cork-handled competitors that we've seen on the market. This contender was only matched by Hiker Hunger, which we also reviewed, and beaten by the Cascade Mountain Tech, a new carbon pole this year for only $45. Oddly enough, the Hiker Hunger poles and the HOG1 are almost exact carbon copies of each other, except for subtle differences in logos and locking mechanisms. Overall, the HOG1 poles are lightweight, have cork handles, and are super inexpensive. However, we do believe that you get what you pay for, and the carbon fiber weave does leave a bit to be desired, as it is rather thin, which makes us question the durability.


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Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Cheapest carbon pole available, cork handles, loads of attachmentsLightweight, packs compactly, comfortable grip, easily disassembledComfortable, easy to adjust, small packed size, light, versatileVery durable, versatile, comfortable, and lightweightTough, comfortable, FlickLock mechanism is stellar, and long lasting
Cons Not durable, locking mechanisms aren't so greatExpensive, may be less durable than some aluminum modelsExpensiveNot as small in packed size as the Leki Micro VarioNot as light or packable as other poles
Bottom Line The Carbon Fiber trekking poles are an inexpensive carbon, cork handled pole that come with plenty of attachments.This pole made of lightweight carbon is our top-ranked trekking pole.This pole is the shortest to pack, is lightweight, the most comfortable, and easy to adjust.These poles are among the most durable tested. They are also comfortable, versatile, and easy to adjust.This is one of the top ranked poles in our review thanks to strong, durable construction, and its comfortable cork grips.
Rating Categories Foxelli HOG1 Carbon Fiber Leki Micro Vario Carbon Women's Micro Vario Carbon Alpine Carbon Cork Alpine Carbon Cork
Comfort (20%)
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7
10
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10
Weight (20%)
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8
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8
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8
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8
Locking And Adjustability (15%)
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6
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8
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8
Packed Size (15%)
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8
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7
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7
Durability (15%)
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5
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9
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10
Versatility (15%)
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7
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9
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10
Specs Foxelli HOG1... Leki Micro Vario... Women's Micro... Alpine Carbon Cork Alpine Carbon Cork
Measured Weight Per Pair (Ounces) 15.7 oz 16.4 oz 16.0 oz 17.0 oz 17.0 oz
Shaft Material Carbon Fiber Carbon Carbon Carbon Carbon Fiber
Min Length (inches) 24 in 15.5 in 15.5 in 25 in 24 in
Max Length (inches) 54.7 in 47 in 51 in 51 in 51 in
Pole Design Collapsible Foldable Foldable Collapsible Collapsible
Grip Material Anti-Slip Natural Cork Foam Foam Cork EVA foam
Locking Mechanism Fast Lock system Speed​​Lock 2 Speed​​Lock 2 External Lever Lock Dual FlickLock Pro
Shock absorbing? No No No No No
Baskets? Tip Attachments? Yes, Baskets and tip attachments Yes, tips and baskets Yes, tips and baskets Yes, rubber tips, trekking baskets, powder baskets Yes, Only Baskets

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Foxelli HOG1 Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles are a smaller brand that we hadn't heard of before, and we were interested in taking a look at one of the least expensive carbon fiber, and cork handled poles on the market. Interestingly enough, the Foxelli HOG1 and the Hiker Hunger poles were almost identical in design.

Performance Comparison


A budget model  that performs relatively well across the board.
A budget model, that performs relatively well across the board.

Comfort


Thanks to cork handles and great ergonomic design, the HOG1 feels pretty good in the hand, and we thought they were on par with other cork handled poles that we had tested this year. Cork handles only get better with time, and we had no questions about the comfort in the handles. As we saw with the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fiber Trekking Poles, the thin carbon fiber weave didn't absorb shock as well as some models with a thicker weave, like the Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Cork. The nylon wrist straps also left a little to be desired. The foam grips located below the cork grips were thick and well cushioned, making it a much more pleasant experience to "choke down" on the pole in rough and uneven terrain.

Foxelli cork handles.
Foxelli cork handles.

Locking Mechanism and Adjustability


The HOG1 is a standard three section telescoping pole, offering a 24 inch packed size, and are adjustable when deployed to 54 inches. There are two lever locking mechanisms to adjust the pole; these locking mechanisms weren't as burly as we hoped, as they were made entirely of plastic, which didn't inspire confidence on our end. Some poles, like the REI Co-op Passage, featured plastic locking mechanisms but felt much thicker and burly.

Foxelli trekking pole locking mechanisms.
Foxelli trekking pole locking mechanisms.

Weight


Although the HOG1 and the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fiber poles were almost identical, the HOG1 weighed in about 0.7 ounces heavier, likely due to the slightly different locking mechanism. Regardless, at 15.7 ounces, that makes the HOG1 one of the lightest cork handled poles that we've tested, and one of the most inexpensive for the weight. However, if you're looking for a lighter pole that feels a little more durable, the Black Diamond Distance Carbon Z may be worth a look. At 10 ounces, the Carbon Z was surprisingly durable.

Durability


We were a bit concerned with the durability of the HOG1 pole, as its plastic locking mechanisms and thin carbon fiber weave didn't make us want to go bushwhacking. They held up just fine on groomed trails, but the longevity of the pole may be suspect. If you're looking for a more durable pole, both the Leki Micro Vario Carbon and the Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Cork have fully featured carbon poles that are quite a bit more burly and feature much thicker carbon fiber weave.

Versatility


The HOG1 comes with plenty of attachments, as do the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fiber and the Cascade Mountain Tech trekking poles. You'll find snow baskets, trekking baskets, and two sets of rubber tips to cover the carbide tips - even a carrying case. Regarding three-season versatility, this makes the HOG1 pretty versatile for a variety of adventures, both on paved and dirt surfaces. We think that, like the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fiber trekking poles, the HOG1 would best serve as a day hiking pole. If you're looking for a more versatile, heavy duty, carbon fiber pole we would suggest something like the Black Diamond Alpine Carbon Cork.

Foxelli tip attachments from left to right: trekking baskets  snow baskets  and rubber tips.
Foxelli tip attachments from left to right: trekking baskets, snow baskets, and rubber tips.

Best Applications


The HOG1 poles are the ideal day hiking poles and can be used on overnight weekend backpacking trips. Much like the Hiker Hunger poles, we were a little skeptical about the durability and longevity of these particular poles but did not experience any problems.

Value


For $70, you'll pretty much get the same pole as the Hiker Hunger Carbon Fiber, and for the life of us, we couldn't distinguish much difference between the two. If you're looking for a lightweight, cork handled trekking pole for a super inexpensive price. You might also consider the Cascade Mountain Tech at only $45. We do think that durability and value aren't the highest metric with this pole, and for $70, you could buy something like the REI Co-op Passage. The Passage features a burlier design and will last for many seasons to come (in a variety of environments). The HOG1 is a day hiking pole.

Conclusion


For $70, you'll get carbon fiber construction and comfortable cork grips. However, durability, longevity, and versatility limit the effectiveness of these poles. For only $10 more, you can purchase the Black Diamond Trail Back which offers a lot more in the way of durability and longevity.


Graham Williams