Camp: Xenon Pro
Test of the light probe sticks, ideal for trail running and fast & light trekking24 February 2020
When the distances and differences in height become significant, a pair of light and performing poles becomes the ideal companion to divide the effort and lighten the load of our trail.
Together with the shoe and the backpack, each trailer must be able to carefully select the poles to be able to get the best during their outdoor activities.
For this reason, we tested the Xenon Pro poles, the CAMP probe model, asking ourselves which type of trailer they can preferably be directed to. Its sometimes "hybrid" characteristics led us to identify a rather large pool of users.
Let's analyze in detail.
The Xenon Pro, made of 7075 aluminum, are available in lengths 120 cm and 135 cm, with a weight of 173 g and 187 g respectively (single stick).
They are composed of four segments with a diameter of 14 mm, with a size of 36 cm and 40 cm respectively when closed. The probe model mounts quickly thanks to the internal Kevlar cord, there is also a velcro strap to compact the stick when folded.
The foam handle (EVA) is very comfortable, particularly long and therefore allows you to adapt the height of the grip, with adjustable nylon strap to ensure excellent comfort. Finally, we find the carbide toe caps that guarantee efficiency and durability, possibly integrated with the pair of rubbers (for Nordic walking) sold jointly.
The Xenon Pros impressed us with the following characteristics:
Very light: 173 g is an excellent result for trail poles! The weight could be that of a vertical model, instead they will end up in the lucky hands of trailers, ultra trailers and trekkers, who will be able to enjoy excellent resistance without any sacrifice in terms of weight.
Ultra-compact: once folded you can easily put them in your backpack and forget about their existence. The velcro also compacts them very well, making them even more practical.
Sturdy and long-lasting: lightness = little resistance? Absolutely not, the choice of aluminum obviously benefits from the robustness of the product. Using these sticks I had the impression that they will keep me company for several years.
Excellent quality / price ratio: stick lightness = wallet lightness? Usually yes, just a quick comparison with the other light trail models on the market. Camp instead managed to maintain a decidedly competitive price for a model that, in certain aspects, could occupy a different price range.
Can we then assign an "en plein" rating to the Xenon Pro?
After several hours of testing, it is difficult not to find some negative notes. Despite the robustness described above, the super-lightness inevitably leads to greater flexibility of the stem, which translates into a good but not optimal support and less solidity compared to other Camp models.
As a final note, I carry the little hindrance between my winter gloves and the velcro, when closing the poles. A true love story, theirs: difficult to divide them.
In the light of our analysis, we can say that the Xenon Pro are light but at the same time resistant sticks, ideal for trail and ultra-trail where with the increase of km a few grams less always makes the difference, especially on the general physical condition.
The great robustness of this model also indicates it for activities that require a heavier backpack, such as trekking and fast hiking. In fact, in the case of poles, the border between trail and trekking is blurred, therefore nothing prevents you from using them for slower activities than a mountain run (difficult the opposite, use trekking models for running activities). Come to think of it, you don't have to be a trail runner to hold sticks lighter than normal - after all, raise your hand if you disdain a little less weight!