You know that old saying about speaking quietly and carrying a big stick? Well, this is a big stick. Made of lightweight but very strong Hornbeam (or "ironwood"), it's both a very effective walking stick, appropriate for your go-bag, and a physical deterrent. There's something about a long sturdy stick in your hand that is very instinctual — would-be aggressors react with a primordial piece of the brain and give pause. Made in America by Brazos, too.
Brazos Hiking Walking Ironwood Stick
WHERE TO BUY
Bottom line: Makes a good walking stick — and good personal defense weapon. Lightweight and tough.
Recommended for: Go-bag.
Be aware: Comes in 41 inch, 48 inch, and 55 inch sticks. Choose the right size for you.
We LOVE the feel and heft of this lightweight walking stick.
That being said, we're not above simply buying long thick wooden dowels. In fact, we have a variety of them in our apartment in New York City. We've got a 16-incher by the fire-escape window, and a four-foot number by the front door. They look innocuous, but they are thick and wieldy, and an effective whacking tool.
You can find something like that here.