Hazel wood combines strength with light weight. The bark can be variable in colour, ranging from dark reddish brown to light grey. The outermost layer of bark is sometimes a thin film of silver or gold with a metallic sheen to it. Mottled forms, combining a range of different colours, always looks attractive.
Hazel is amongst the most frequently used woods for making walking sticks. This is because suitable shanks are relatively easily sourced. It grows fairly straight, is light and strong and retains its interesting bark. Because of the attractiveness of the bark, I rarely ever shave or de-bark my Hazel sticks.
Guidelines for arriving at the optimum length for you are shown on Choosing a Stick.