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Gear Review Quickie – XShot Pro Pole for GoPro

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There I was touring the backcountry with this pole in my pants that grew every time I got excited. My ski touring partners gave me an inquisitive look every time I whipped it out of my pants to document the action.

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Is that an XShot Pro Pole for GoPro in your pants or are you just happy to see me?

Like everything you whip out of your pants, not everyone will be excited to see it. Such is the case with camera mount sticks, forever branded as ‘selfie sticks’. They’re easy to make fun of, partly because it’s a device you buy to take pictures of yourself, and partly because of people like this…


But… there’s more to these sticks that first meets the eye. We took the X-Shot GoPro Pole for a test spin on the snow, and it turns out there’s more to these extendable sticks than taking bad photos of your bikini.

First off, the XShot Pro Pole is for regular cameras and GoPros, so you don’t need to worry about people answering their iPhone with a big rod sticking out of their head.

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Second, you don’t actually have to use it to take pictures of your face. With some creativity, the pole can be used for things like chairlift photos, overhead video shots, and more.

The classic 'pretend you're not holding a selfie stick' photo.

The classic ‘pretend you’re not holding a selfie stick’ photo.

We tried stuffing it in a backpack for different follow cam angle, and with a few more mods next time it could be a cool angle. There’s a quick clip in this video.

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DIY backpack cam. If we stabilize it better next time it’ll be a winner.

As for the XPro itself, it has some perks beyond the selfie sticks we owned in past. It packs really small, so you can stuff it in a jacket pocket or backpack slot, and then when things get photo worthy just whip it out and let it grow. It also has a 360 degree rotating head, yielding tonnes of flexibility for different photo or video angles.

Maybe you could use it as a DIY periscope? Hide in a snow cave and watch for people trying to snake your lines?

The only gripe about the product was the GoPro attachment. If you’re switching between helmet cam and pole cam throughout the day, you have to keep unscrewing the helmet cam clip and re-screwing it into the XShot pole attachment. An easier solution would be to just put the female side of GoPro’s attachments at the end pole, so that you could easily move your GoPro from one to the other.

And admittedly, skier’s don’t really need GoPro poles because we can just attach a GoPro to a ski pole, but between the 360 rotating head and the backpack-view I was trying, this XShot pole does have some merit. And if you’re a snowboarder, then hey, suddenly this gadget gets a lot more useful.

Summary

Extendable things that you whip out of your pants to document your own radness are not for everyone. But for folks who see the potential of what an extendable camera pole can do for your next ski photo album or webisode, the XShot Pro Pole is a good choice. It’s well made, versatile, and easy to pack. And even if you forget to use it for taking pictures, you can always take advantage of it for fighting off wildlife or whacking your buddy every time he drops in on you.

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The Breakdown


Durability
8
Usability
7
Length Range
8
Sexiness
7
Ability to Whack Your Buddy With It
10




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