Leki Micro Vario Carbon Trekking Poles | Review - Outdoors Magic

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Leki Micro Vario Carbon Trekking Poles | Review

These premium trekking poles harness the strength and lightness of carbon fibre to produce a pole well-suited to ultralight backpacking, mountain trekking and Nordic walking

Why We Chose The Leki Micro Vario Carbon Trekking Poles Lightweight, packable, versatile

We wouldn’t hike a multi-day, long-distance trail without trekking poles. When you’re carrying a heavy pack or traversing steep ground, they make the going much easier, whether you’re going up or coming down, as well as saving your knees and warding off general aches and pains.

Leki’s Micro Vario Carbon poles have been designed to offer performance and convenience on the trail. These premium poles combine ultralight carbon fibre construction with a unique external locking system – and they’ve proven to be a hit. In fact, this is the third time they’ve made it into our Outdoor 100 selection.   

Who Are The Leki Micro Vario Carbon Trekking Poles For?

These are technologically advanced poles that would be better suited to walkers who already understand the benefits of trekking poles and are accustomed to using them, particularly those seeking to minimise trail weight by upgrading from aluminium alloy poles to carbon fibre construction. Part of Leki’s specialist trekking range, the Micro Vario Carbon is suitable for particularly demanding tours.

Here’s another pair in the Leki Micro Vario family we’ve reviewed…

Materials and Construction

These trekking poles are made from PRC 1000 (performance racing carbon) carbon fibre, making them extremely light yet with a high strength-to-weight ratio and excellent corrosion resistance. They are ‘Z-style’ folding poles comprised of 3 sections, with a central shock-cord system. This gives them an extremely short length of just 37cm when folded – which means they are compact enough to fit inside most daypacks.

The minimum length is 120cm and they extend up to a maximum of 140cm, so should be suitable for walkers who are a little over 5ft up to 6ft plus. To assemble, just slot the three elements together and then pull up the upper handle section of the pole until it clicks into place. A small button keeps the poles securely locked. To fold them away, you simply loosen the top ‘Easy-Lock’ lever, push in the button and pull apart.


Most premium trekking poles tend to use lever-lock systems rather than the older, screw-tightening system, and these are no exception. Leki’s ‘Speed-Lock 1’ fixing works similarly to most other lever-lock or flick-lock mechanisms on the market, but feels robust and sturdy.

“These ought to give you plenty of confidence on demanding terrain”

Although, like all carbon poles, careful placement is still necessary, because sudden impacts are more likely to shatter carbon fibre compared to aluminium alloy. The upside is vastly reduced weight, which reduces fatigue, particularly when covering longer mileages.

“A streamlined and ultralight pair of poles that remain sturdy and practical.”

These poles also feature extended grips, with a lower secondary foam rubber section that makes it easy to choke down on a sharp ascent, without having to change the pole length. The rounded Aergon handle has been ergonomically engineered to nestle nicely in the palm. The straps are simple fabric strips, which adjust easily.


When it comes to outdoor kit, shedding weight without losing features or functionality isn’t always easy. But Leki’s Micro Vario Carbon Trekking Poles manage it with aplomb, resulting in a streamlined and ultralight pair of poles that remain sturdy and practical. The remarkably compact folded length is also a major plus in many scenarios where space is at a premium.

Tester’s Verdict

Becky Angell, Outdoor Blogger @beckythetraveller

“Even though these are considerably lighter than any other walking poles I’ve used I found them robust and worked well with my full body weight when I used them particularly on the descent. I initially thought the faux cork grips would be uncomfortable and makes my hands sweat but they didn’t. My only criticism is the design for extending and retracting them, you need to pull hard to get the full lock on so they all click into place and it is the same when you’re trying to take them down, in fact I found this harder as you have to pull to get them to unclick.”

Leki Micro Vario Carbon Trekking Poles

Selected for the Outdoor 100 2022/23
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