David Lintern headshot

Tested by David Lintern

David tested these poles on a wide mix of ground, from multiday backpacks to his local trails on days out with the kids, right across Scotland from Spring through to Autumn. Weights are from his digital scales and for individual poles (not pairs). 

This review first appeared in the January 2023 issue of The Great Outdoors.

The Komperdell Carbon C3 Cloud Compact comes recommended by our expert gear tester, David Lintern.

The Carbon C3 Cloud Compact trekking pole from Komperdell is a very lightweight pole, but despite that it is very tough and well-designed. It’s a three-section, all-carbon pole, with the sections being adjusted by flick locks. These are made of aluminium for extra strength, and tension is adjusted by a recessed Phillips screw, which makes for a more streamlined unit less prone to being knocked. The handle is one piece and made of foam – an upper section with moulding to accommodate an index finger, and a lower section to allow for hand adjustment on uneven terrain.

  • Rating: 4.5/5
  • Pros: Small packed length, lightweight, very rigid, good handle
  • Cons: Irregular shaft diameter (won’t accept connector for pyramid tarp use), expensive
  • Price: $120 | £130 (pair)
  • Buy now from alpinetrek.co.uk
  • Weight: 0.45 lb | 206g each

Materials: carbon shaft, aluminium locks, foam handle | Features: 3-section pole, fabric straps, flick lock system, 3-season baskets supplied. | Sizes: packed 57.5cm, fully extended 121cm

Height measurements are given in metric, but only on the middle section. Measurements are also black-on-black, so difficult to read. The strap is basic, but comfortable enough. In use, the use of carbon throughout means the weight balance shifts towards the upper third of the pole, but they are so lightweight overall they are hard not to enjoy using. The brand has gone for wider-diameter shafts and that results in exceptional rigidity, and so there’s no give at all when walking – really reassuring. However, they don’t accept a standard diameter connector, should you need to join them together for use with a pyramid tarp.

The Carbon C3 Cloud poles collapse down very small considering they are flick locks, but beware the shorter maximum height if you are over 6ft tall. The Cloud Compacts are expensive, but an excellent choice in every other respect.

See more trekking poles in our guide to the best trekking poles.