The Gitzo G-1560 Monotrek is a lightweight monopod and hiking stick combo. It has a small built-in ball head with a plastic cover for the head when not in use. I recently took it with me on a 9-mile hike along with the Think Tank Photo Rotation 360 backpack.
As a hiking stick, it works well. I generally don’t hike with such a stick, but I could be persuaded to making it a more regular practice. I found that I really used the Gitzo G-1560 on inclines, which turned out to be quite a bit with over 2900′ elevation gain on the trip. The grip and wrist strap are comfortable and caused no problems for me over the course of my 9-miler.
At 1.0 lb, the Gitzo is a little heavier than some of the other top-rated walking sticks out there, which are commonly in the 10-11 oz. range. I figure that most of the difference, however, is a result of the small, yet effective, ball head that comes with the G-1560. [Read more...]