The short section of pole is the pole splint. It is part of the repair kit and was designed to provide a quick easy field repair in the event of a broken pole. To use the pole splint, simply slide it over the damaged pole segment and tape or wedge it in place. This should keep your poles usable allowing you to finish your trip. Then give us a call at 1-800-997-9301 and we can help get you the parts you need to make your poles usable once again!