Mountainsmith Dolomite 7075 OLS Review
Compare prices at 2 resellers Pros: Inexpensive, highly adjustable, durable
Cons: Heavy, not versatile, doesn't pack small
Compare to Similar Products
Mountainsmith Dolomite 7075 OLS
|Price||Check Price at REI|
Compare at 2 sellers
|$149.95 at REI||Check Price at REI|
Compare at 2 sellers
|$39.99 at Amazon||$44.99 at Amazon|
|Pros||Inexpensive, highly adjustable, durable||Comfortable grip, locks securely, packs small, highly versatile||Lightweight, short collapsed length, surprisingly durable||Durable, comfortable grip, packs small||Medium weight, versatile, inexpensive|
|Cons||Heavy, not versatile, doesn't pack small||Carbon is less durable than aluminum, on the expensive side||No length adjustability, average grip comfort||Heavy, less versatile due to weight||Bulky quick lock levers|
|Bottom Line||This single-pole option is great for newer users who are curious about the benefits of a trekking pole and who don't want to break the bank||A simple, elegant, and well-built trekking pole with versatility for all uses||Durable with a short collapsed length, this is a fantastic value for a lightweight pole||A highly affordable pair of poles with all of the features of more expensive models||A good pole for entry-level users with some great features at an excellent price|
|Rating Categories||Dolomite 7075 OLS||MSR DynaLock Ascent...||Black Diamond Dista...||Trekology Trek-Z||Carbon Fiber Quick...|
|Locking And Adjustability (15%)|
|Packed Size (15%)|
|Specs||Dolomite 7075 OLS||MSR DynaLock Ascent...||Black Diamond Dista...||Trekology Trek-Z||Carbon Fiber Quick...|
|Measured Weight Per Pair (ounces)||9.5 oz||17.0 oz||12.5 oz||26.0 oz||16.0 oz|
|Shaft Material||7075 aluminum||Carbon fiber||Aluminum||Aluminum||Carbon|
|Collapsed Length (inches)||24 in||14.25 in||13/14/16/17 in||15 in||26 in|
|Max Length (inches)||54 in||47 in||39/43/47/51 in||47 in||53 in|
|Grip Material||Cork||Rubber / Plastic / Foam||EVA foam||Foam||Cork|
|Locking Mechanism||External lever lock||DynaLock||Speed Cone Deployment||Lever lock||Quick Lock|
|Baskets? Tip Attachments?||Yes, winter and summer baskets||Yes, winter and summer baskets||Yes, rubber and carbide tips||Yes, powder and trail baskets, boots, and narrow tips||Boots, mud baskets, snow baskets and small tips|
|Size Tested||One size||100-120 cm||110 cm||100-120 cm||One size|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Unique to our review, the Mountainsmith Dolomite is sold as a single pole and excels in simple hiking terrain.
While most products in this category have moved towards foam grips, the Dolomite features a cork grip that molds to the user's hand over time. Unfortunately, our test model had a relatively abrasive feel to the cork. The grip contour is comfortable and the rounded top of the handle is pleasant to push down upon, but the secondary grip tapers from top to bottom in a way that is uncomfortable to hold. Overall, this pole is not as comfortable as most other products in the category.
At 9.5 ounces for a single pole, the Dolomite is relatively heavy compared to other trekking poles on the market. It features thick aluminum shaft components, which make the pole feel heavy and slow to swing forward. Newer users and hikers out for short day-hikes won't feel the weight, but seasoned users immediately notice the heavy overall weight and clunky feel of this heavy pole. If weight is a consideration at all, or if you'll be swinging this pole on the trail for long distances and multiple days in a row, the weight will likely become an issue.
Locking and Adjustability
The Dolomite features two aluminum lever locks that snap securely into place and prevent any length changes during use. The levers are tightened or loosened with small metal dials, which are easy to operate and don't require a special tool for adjustments. The pole extends from 24 to 54 inches, for a generous 30 inches of length adjustment capacity. We were impressed by the Dolomite's performance in this category.
As with most three-section collapsible pole designs, the Dolomite does not pack down to a small size. The smallest collapsed length of the pole is 24 inches, which is too long to fit cleanly onto the outside of a backpack, and it will unlikely fit inside. The pole also takes up more room in luggage if traveling is required to get you to the trail. More and more trekking poles are moving towards a foldable design while still allowing 8 inches of length adjustment, and this pole bucks the trend. Most users don't need more than 8 inches of length adjustment, however, and the large minimum packed size is a hefty price to pay for so much length adjustment.
Built from sturdy aluminum, we have little doubt that the Dolomite will last a long time. The shafts feel thick and solid, and the aluminum lever locks are confidence-inspiring. We wouldn't hesitate to bring this pole with us to the ends of the earth on treks through rugged and rocky terrain or to use it to cross creeks with a heavy pack. We did not run into any issues during our testing period.
The main drawback to this product is its lack of versatility. Sold as a single pole, this product doesn't perform well on terrain where two poles are useful, like balancing across tricky creek crossings, wading rivers, crossing rugged boulder fields, and winter snowshoeing or backcountry skiing. Its weight and large packed size also make it unsuitable for carrying on alpine climbs or scrambles. This product is best used on established hiking trails for trips shorter than a day or two and where the pace will be relaxed.
The Dolomite provides the performance of more expensive poles in an affordable package, albeit for just one-half of the standard "pair." For advanced users who demand two poles and higher performance, this pole won't seem like a good value, but for new hikers or anyone who wants to try a trekking pole to see what all the fuss is about, this product is an affordable and reasonable option. And, to be fair, you can always buy two.
If you are going to be hiking on established trails at relaxed paces, and aren't sure if you need two trekking poles, the Dolomite is an affordable way to add efficiency to your hiking. But, if you are an experienced hiker who is looking for poles that will up your game, look elsewhere.
— Jeff Dobronyi