This, like many of my walking sticks, came into existence as an experiment using a 2x. I cut the 2x4 down to two 2x2's and went to work on one for this project.
I marked a scoop out of the left, or right, side (not going too deep, to maintain strength), starting at the bottom or the top, just below the section dedicated to hand grip. Then I flipped it 90 degrees clockwise, or counter clockwise, then continued to move up/down the stick maintaining the pattern (mark the left/right, then turn clockwise/counter clockwise) for the next mark.
Once done, I used my jig saw or band saw to cut each scoop out.
When all the cuts were made, I drilled through holes down one side. at each scoop intersection. The holes were just big enough to allow me to push thin rope through them.
I tapered the bottom using my drum sander. Once close, I pre-drilled a hole for a 2-1/2" deck screw, installed a rubber stopper I had also pre-drilled, then finished with 150 on a hand sander.
I fired up the sander with 60 grit to, rough in the shape of the sides and handle area, then finished with 150. It went pretty quick.
I finished with polyurethane. The first applications were thinned about 20%, so soaked in quickly. I kept it all wet, so it wouldn't start the hardening process on the surface, and added more wherever it was soaked in.
When it was taking in more poly slowly, I hung the stick to let the applications harden. When hard, added the final coats.
I added the rope. I do not remember how I went about it, because me, ropes and knots or braiding don't play well together [I was a Tenderfoot for three years because of that very thing ]