When going on a hike, a hiking stick could be your most favourable partner! So why not learn how to make one!

Why I Need a Hiking Stick

How To Make A Hiking Stick by hikingrange.com

Hiking sticks are one of the many tools used by hikers. The primary purpose of a hiking stick is to provide balance when walking downhill on uneven terrain and rocky surfaces.

They also come in handy while crossing rivers with slippery rocks, helping you maintain your balance.

When there is snow on the ground, a hiking stick can act as an extra set of legs to help you keep your balance in steep sections and to prevent falls when climbing up hills with bare feet or shoes with no grip.

What If I Don't Have Hiking Stick

If you don’t have a hiking stick, your only option is to improvise. This can be done by using long and sturdy branches found on the ground or by cutting one from a tree branch with your pocket knife if you have it with you.

The only downside of not having a proper hiking stick while out on the trail is that you will tire more quickly. It will take you longer to go uphill than it would if you were using a hiking stick. Because there is less stability when walking downhill, there’s an increased risk of ankle sprains

Multiple Ways To Make A Hiking Stick

How To Make A Hiking Stick by hikingrange.com

There are different ways of making your hiking stick from materials found on the trail.

  • Using a tree branch that has the right thickness and flexibility to act as a hiking stick, you need to remove all the side branches and twigs found on the branch. 
  • To do this, use your pocket knife by cutting straight along both sides of the branches and twigs. This should result in just having a main ‘trunk’ of the branch left.
  • Proceed to pound it into the ground vertically to create a sturdy walking stick that you can lean on when going down hills or crossing slippery rivers.
  •  You can also use this kind of makeshift stick to help you climb up rocky surfaces by holding it close to your body and stepping onto it with your hands as you ascend the rocks.You can also use your pocket knife to cut multiple side branches and twigs along the main branch that you plan on using to make it more ‘bushy’.
  •  This is a good way of increasing the strength of your stick as well as creating more grip by having extra side branches near where you place your hands when walking, or in the case of crossing rivers, where you put your hands to keep balance.You can also use a bamboo stick as a hiking stick by cutting off the lower part of the bamboo stem carefully with your knife until you reach the point where it is just thick enough so that it will not bend when pressure is applied to it, but still thin enough to give you the flexibility and balance that a hiking stick provides.You need to sand the edges of the cut stem with your pocket knife or any rough surface near you (e.g. rocks) to smooth it out so that it will not cut into your hands when walking with it.
  •  To use a fallen tree branch as your hiking stick, you need to split it into pieces. This is done by using rocks or logs to pound the end of the branch until it splits open along its length.

Option 1:

Pounding the two halves flat so that they can create a flat-sided walking stick that is more suitable for going uphill.

Option 2:

Pounding one of the halves into a curve so that it creates a hook at the end of your stick to provide better grip and stability when crossing slippery surfaces (e.g. rivers).

Tips To While Making A Hiking Stick

Here are some tips to make the most of your hiking stick:

  • You can also sharpen the ends of your hiking stick by using your pocket knife to carve away at its edges. The sharper and pointier it is, the better it will work for you when going uphill or crossing slippery surfaces.
  •  Hiking sticks should be an appropriate height (1.5 to 1.8 times the length of your leg). This is because it will provide you with better stability and balance when going up hills or downhill while also making sure that your steps are long enough when going uphill so as not to tire you out too quickly.
  • You can use any found natural materials on the trail to make your hiking stick. For instance, you can cut off a thin twig from a bush and use this as a hook or grip when crossing rivers

Can I Rely On Homemade Hiking Stick

How To Make A Hiking Stick by hikingrange.com

If you’re on a short hike in the woods, relying on a homemade hiking stick is possible. However, if you plan on going out for an extended period for longer hikes/climbs etc.,

 I would not recommend this as your main form of walking support. The reason for this is that natural materials are not as strong as manufactured ones, and chances are your stick might break when you need it the most.

How To Make Hiking Stick At Home

Do not worry if you are interested in making it at home; I will help you follow these steps.

How To Make A Hiking Stick by hikingrange.com

Materials needed:

  •  A sturdy stick
  •  Saw
  • Drill with a small bit and a larger bit (depending on if you want to carry the hiking stick in your pack or strap it to your backpack)
  • Knife capable of whittling wood
  • Optional: A branch for cutting the walking stick from

Steps To Make Hiking stick

Step 1.

Measure and mark where you want the top of your hiking stick to be. Then, cut a notch out of that spot with your knife.

Step 2.

 Cut a 10-inch slit on each side of the stick beginning from the notch you just made.

Step 3.

Tie a piece of cordage to the notch you created and tie the other end around your wrist. This prevents the stick from falling out of place as you cut it.

Step 4.

Cut around the stick in alternating directions (diagonal/vertical) until you are left with one solid piece of wood that looks like a candy cane.he notch you created and tie the other end around your wrist. This prevents the stick from falling out of place as you cut it.

Step 5.

Optional: If you would like to carry your hiking stick on your backpack, drill a hole at the top of the stick about an inch from the edge of the rounded part (where it was cut). Then, apply some wood glue or pitch to keep the cordage in place. Drill a smaller hole in the other end.

Step 6.

Optional: If you would like to strap your hiking stick to your backpack, cut two notches in the top of the flat end and then tie cordage through each notch and attach them to the backpack straps so that it hangs off one shoulder.

Step 7.

Cut a slit in the middle of one side of the hiking stick the entire length. If you want to attach this stick to your backpack, drill a hole through the middle of the flat end and use one of the cordage pieces that was used for adding weight to make a loop so you can easily hook it onto your backpack.

The hiking stick is now finished!

Final Words

So this was a full guide on how to make a hiking stick. I hope you all learn from this article and make your own one if you are interested in making it at home.

Thank You,