Skimo Co

Les Batons d'Alain


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The Chamonix ski mountaineering pole. Coming to us from across the pond and made in the shadow of the great and icy Mont Blanc, these unorthodox ski poles offer many small yet meaningful solutions to many small yet meaningful problems ski mountaineers face in the mountains. Made by mountain guide Alain Desez, the 18mm aluminum poles feature long ribbed foam grips which extend nearly halfway down each pole. Alain's Sticks are durable and allow you to grip anywhere along the top half of each pole without slipping. Also, no wrist straps! Straps can make ordinary falls rather dangerous and can make activating your airbag difficult in the event of an avalanche. Without them, you can more easily plunge the tops of the poles into snow. Proven by Chamoniard mountain guides on steep north faces and by American ski alpinists on routes like Foraker's Archangel Ridge, the highest level of pole design is now available to the powder-hunting, couloir-dropping, European-flag-loving masses.

  • 18mm 7075 anodized aluminum makes up the shaft for great strength.
  • The pommels (the plastic caps on the top) have a strap attachment point.
  • Reflective strips adorn these poles for improved visibility at night.
  • Includes easily swappable powder and piste baskets.
  • Tungsten carbide tips are slightly flexible.
  • Comes in lots of fun grip colors.

Lengths (cm) 115, 125, 135
convert to ounces
201g [125]
225g [135]
Weight (pair) 402g [125]
450g [135]
Collapsed Length   N/A
Sections 1
Grip 70cm long extended foam
Basket & Tip 85mm powder baskets and 38mm mini baskets, carbide tip
Diameter 18mm just below the grip
Specs Verified Yes
Materials   7075 aluminum, EVA foam, polymer, carbide
Strap Sold separately
Skimo Co Says
Usage Steep skiing, mountain running
Notes Infinite handle position
Bottom Line Burly, basic ski poles with limitless grip options
Compare to other Fixed Length Ski Poles

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From $5.95
$249.95 $179.96

Questions & Reviews

Question from Hillary
What size would you recommend for 5’7”?
Answer from Lbow
Hi Hillary,

We're the same height! I'd recommend a 125cm; if you're standing and your elbow is at 90 degrees with a comfortable grip on the pole, that's what I would recommend!
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Millard (used product regularly)
Bought two pairs of these at the beginning of last season. My buddy and I used them for just about everything. Very versatile and comfortable. The foam really doesn’t get cold. And they’re super light weight by my standards. Problems began around march. One tip had broken. And we lost a basket the next week. By the end of the season we were down to one functional pole. Two shafts were bent with some tie downs. Overall I would say that these pole are a lot of fun but need to be beefed up a bit. Screw-on plastic tips are never going to work.
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Travis C (used product regularly)
I was in dire need for a new set of poles this season, and finally pulled the trigger on buying these in January. I've mainly used them for resort skiing, plus a little bit of touring. Overall, they are awesome. I am 5'10" and was worried the 125s might be a bit short, but that length is perfect for me. I agree that they are overkill at most resorts, but if you ski somewhere with hikes/sidesteps/traverses, they definitely serve their purpose. One unexpected benefit I found is on deep days, I could just choke up my grip instead of having chicken wings trying to keep my poles from dragging. I've used them in a variety of temps so far and no issues with durability, however I will say that if you purchase a pair with the orange caps and baskets, they are really bright. It's a safety orange color that has a neon glow outdoors. So if neon isn't your thing, maybe get a pair with the white or black caps and baskets instead.

After dropping them a few times while skating on flats, I ended up making my own straps with some paracord. A lot cheaper than the straps sold alongside the poles, plus the length can be dialed in for your preference. Also if you really can't fathom paying this much for poles, a little bit of gorilla glue and foam bike handlebar tape on an old pair of aluminum poles will accomplish the same thing for a fraction of the price. Looks way better than the hockey tape trick as well. But if featherlight weight combined with durability is what you're after, batons can't be beat.
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EG1 (downright abused product)
I'm impressed with the durability of this pole given the fact that it is relatively normal foam on the grips they are aluminum shafts. I've shoved these on the sides of many packs next and dragged them across rock while approaching summits and never had an issue with bending or denting. Also, I strap them to skis with G3 ZED's on them and the bindings often close on the grips, temporarily depressing the foam but never ripping it or pulling it off the pole. Tips are really strong as well - no issues with snapping off the bottoms in hardpack.

Personally, I find 5cm longer than normal poles to be plenty or else you're really choking up for the downs. I also would just do a vari adjust/grip option if you're looking for a pair to crush resort and backcountry - these are overkill at the resort (obviously).

Sure, there's a "these are in" stigma - but they're really good. Chamonix guides wouldn't be using them religiously if they weren't...
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Question from Aaron Squier
The strap holder broke off the pommel one of my poles. Do you know if it's possible to replace this part?
Answer from Jeff
Hello Aaron, Yes, we sell the caps, straps and baskets here - parts.
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Question from Ben
Can you give an idea of when/if you will get more stock? Looking for all black 135s or other colors in general in the 135 size. Thanks!
Answer from Brett S
Hey Ben, if you don't like any of the 135cm colors we have in stock, we'll be receiving more in the Fall!
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Question from Richard S
I am 5'9" and got the 135's. I got the 135s because when i am polling while skinning, I usually extend my BDs to 135. And just thought I would choke up on these for the downhill (I tele and like my poles smaller). But these things seem HUGE!!!
A lot of people have written that they are around my height and got the 135 and like them. Anybody have problems with them being too long????
Answer from Ian C
Hi Richard, haven't heard that specific complaint myself. Sounds like the 125cm might be more up your alley!
Answer from Thomas M
Hey, I'm 5'10'' and rocking 135 for everything (alpine skiing, ski touring, trail running, trekking). The beauty of these beasts is that you can hold them as low as you want on the grip. Up the hill, I often hold them on top and when going down between 15 and 20 from the top with no issue. Have fun !
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Question from Clancy
Are you guys going to get any more of the rainbows in stock? 135-140? Thanks
Answer from Julieana
Hey Clancy, we will probably get more in at some point, however I can't tell you if or when exactly as we are rather at the whim of Alain on these... he sends us however many of whatever style he decides to make a few times throughout the season. It makes it that much more exciting when we do get them in and that much more exclusive when you get a pair! If you send us an email at we can set you up to get a notification when he does send us some rainbow ones in that size!
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Question from Jack Evers
Hello! I was just wondering how long do these poles take to ship?
Answer from Tristan M
Hi Jack,

That would depend on where you live! For more information, reach out to us at, and we are happy to give you a more precise estimate.
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Question from Peter
Are the poles measured from above the baskets or does that include the tip as well?
Answer from Ian C
Hey Peter, the length labeled is the full length of the baton, inclusive of the tips!
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Question from Nick
I have broken tips on these a couple of times. Oops. Alain sent me some replacements once before but I am wondering if there is an easier option out there. Any ideas? Thanks!

Only bummer about these poles is that the tips do some to have the propensity to break when rotating dynafit heel pieces.
Answer from Ian C
Hey Nick, we occasionally get a few of those tips from Alain and are able to send them out as a replacement. We don't have them listed on our site, however, since supply can be limited. Feel free to continue reaching out to Alain or if this happens again and we can check if some tips are available.
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Question from Bucky
6'3" tall. 135 or 140 length? Thanks.
Answer from Zak M
Hey Bucky, I am right around 6ft and I own the 135cm and they are just about perfect. With that being said I think the 140cm would be great. Let us know if you have anymore questions!
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M Del (used product a few times)
Immediately became my favorite touring poles the first time I used them. Love the grip girth and comfort. the ability to quickly adjust your grip is awesome and the extra length didn’t get in the way going down so I’d go bigger if you’re between sizes (5-11 went with 135s)
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Brendan C (used product a few times)
I wanted a pole that could be used for hiking, steep skiing and touring. So far, they’re incredibly intuitive and extremely light weight for the size.
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Question from Cody
Any suggestion on how to size these? I'm 6'1''.
Answer from Cole P
Hey Cody, I recommend going with the 135cm pole.
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Kincaid M (used product regularly)
The hype is real, these are great touring poles. The low weight and long foam make skin tracks and sidehills quite enjoyable when choking up. Its always fun seeing the look on people's faces when they pick them up for the first time.

The plastic tip is a weak point of these poles though. I caught them on a ski edge my first day out and sheared it off where the metal pole ends. Thankfully after reaching out, both Skimo Co and Alain himself were willing and able to help me get back out. Would recommend again and again.
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Centerfold (used product regularly)
Okay, so I first heard about these through Dane over at Cold Thistle blog. I ordered them from Alain himself in France and was the only guy in the Wasatch for several years without them. I am convinced Jason saw me in Alta after it closed and with his jealous eyes worked to get him here. I am thankful because now it saves me the time this season when I go replace them.

These poles are incredible. I love how light, simple, elegant they are. Fine engineering IMO. It isn't overthought-out. I use these for every type of mission and the poles attach to the pack just fine if they need to be stowed with skis.

My favorite feature is for early cold mornings Dec/Jan dawn patrols. The poles are just so much warmer when moving.
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Question from Paul
I received these poles as a gift. They are about 3" longer than my old poles. When skiing in downhill mode would I just grip the pole 3" from the top? Or should I be looking for a shorter pair,
Answer from Will M
Hey Paul,

Great question! I typically grip the pole at my normal pole height. It can feel a bit odd at first, but it's easy to get used to. Plus, having the poles sized a bit longer than normal allows for the shuffling of hands up higher on steeps & flats.
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Will M (downright abused product)
Believe the hype.

When I think of French culture, I think of three things. Croissants, cheap (but good) red wine and now Les Batons d'Alain. You may be saying to yourself "Will, a ski pole is not a culture commodity". But I must beg to differ. This pole embodies the tradition of steep skiing, having been forged in the steep & deep valley of Chamonix, you can almost taste the cafe au lait as you jump turn your way back to the bakery.

I've used these as my one & only pole this year and have #noragrets. They're light, simple, and well designed. Usually, with a single shaft pole, you'll have to worry a bit about strength when using them in anchors, but I have not found this to be the case. The poles also slot in quite nicely behind your backpack.

I'm 6' and sized my poles to be 135cm.
Comment on this review:

Question from Brian H
How are you sitting for replacement ends? I broke one and it no longer will hold a strap when I need one. Time to source a machine shop to make some from block aluminum.
Answer from Teddy Young
Hey Brian, thanks for reaching out! Email us a photo of the broken cap and we'll see what we can find!

As a temporary(but adjustable) solution, you may be able to girth hitch or clove hitch some material around the foam grip itself, à la SCOTT RC Pro poles.
Answer from Brian H
I simply need a new end piece. My attempt to epoxy the cracked strap slot failed.
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Model: Alain's A2-16 Sticks

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