Studies suggest that the average American spends 25-30% of the day sitting, and this percentage may actually increase while we are overlanding. So it’s important that once we’ve wrapped up our journey for the day, stretched our legs and set up camp, we have a comfortable seat upon which to spend the rest of the evening. There are a wide variety of seating options available in the adventure travel marketplace, with a product to suit each priority, whether that is minimal weight, ease of setup, or comfort. We’ve identified some of the best seating systems on the market and listed them in order of weight below.
Therm-A-Rest Trekker Lounge Chair
The lightest packing overland travelers will usually forgo chairs and opt to use coolers or storage boxes for seating instead. Well, with the Trekker Lounge Chair system, Therm-A-Rest has eliminated the need to sacrifice comfort and back support by enabling you to convert your sleeping pad into a lounge chair. The elastic sleeves will fit most standard inflatable sleeping pads. The nylon fabric frame and fiberglass poles add structure while keeping the weight minimal. When not in use, the system that accommodates a 20” pad, packs down to 4” by 20” and weighs only 10 oz.
Stoic Lightweight Trail Chair
Scoring extra points in the dual-purpose category, the simple padded polyester construction of the Stoic Lightweight Trail Chair can come in handy and lend some comfort during any trail-side repairs that are required during your journey. Adjustable buckled straps mean you can adjust your lean angle to your desire. The Trail Chair folds up to 19” by 18” by 3” and weighs a mere 1.6 lbs.
Bass Pro Shops Eclipse Travel Lite Tripod Stool
Weighing in at only 1.8 lbs., the Eclipse Travel Lite Tripod Stool is so light that the average overlander will hardly notice it when added to a day pack or slung over their shoulder for a quick hike to a sunset overlook. The powder-coated steel frame with plastic feet and water-resistant polyester seat yield a simple, yet durable design. Rising up to 18.5” in height and 15” across, the seat will accommodate people who weigh up to 225 lbs.
LEKI Sub 1 Chair
Adding 4.2oz in weight, the LEKI Sub 1 Chair provides more support and comfort (total weight is 2.1 lbs.). The aluminum frame and nylon seat are strong enough to hold someone who weighs up to 319 lbs., and the 6-pronged rubber feet mean your chair won’t go sliding anywhere while you’re sitting in it. The glass fiber reinforced plastic connective components lend themselves to greater overall durability of the Sub 1. Both the cupholder and the storage bag can be easily attached to the chair for added convenience and a smidge of luxury.
Fatboy Lamzac Original Lounge Chair
Rating high for packability, comfort, and kid-friendliness, the Lamzac Original makes for a great way to lounge at the end of the day just about anywhere you find yourself. Constructed with tough, nylon rip-stop fabric, the two air chambers can be filled in a matter of seconds to create a durable and extremely comfortable lounge. (Check out the “how-to” video here.) When you’re ready to pack up, you simply unroll the roll-top closure, deflate the chambers and pack down the Lamzac to 13.8” by 7.1”. Able to accommodate up to 440 lbs., the Lamzac can seat multiple children or a couple of adults.
Stoic Fireside Kickback Chair
With a comfortable lean angle and durable mesh seat, the Fireside Kickback Chair practically begs to be relaxed in by the campfire or on a beach. The low seat height and wide base also make it one of the friendlier camp chairs on the market for little kids who might not be safely seated in the higher, less sturdy camp chair options. This chair weighs in at 4.7 lbs. and packs up into a convenient carrying case.
Helinox Sunset Chair
The Helinox Sunset Chair rings the bells for durability and customizability. With a high back and higher-than-average seat height (of 14 inches), the Sunset Chair is one of the more comfortable seating options for taller overlanders. Supported by DAC aluminum alloy poles, the seat can accommodate someone who weighs up to 320 lbs. The Helinox Sunset Chair can be customized to suit any season. For winter camping, the plush High Back Seat Warmer can be added to block out drafts. In the summer, you can swap the standard blended fabric seat for a mesh one and then add a Personal Shade to shield you from the sun.
NEMO – Stargaze Recliner Luxury Chair
Like a porch swing that lets you lean back and gaze at the stars, NEMO’s Luxury Recliner provides the next level in comfort, engineering and relaxation. Due to the low center of gravity, the Stargaze Recliner is extremely stable and can be trusted on rocky, sandy or uneven surfaces. With its auto-recline feature that adjusts in response to your lean and the ability to swing like a hammock, the Stargaze is the most highly-engineered chair on our list, but remains remarkably quick and easy to set up. In addition to its unique design and functionality, NEMO has incorporated important little details that make the Stargaze a favorite amongst overlanders: an adjustable headrest, a pocket for your phone or bug spray, padded armrests, and even a no-spill cupholder. Constructed with aircraft-grade aluminum and monofilament mesh, the Stargaze Recliner is an investment-worthy piece that comes protected by NEMO’s lifetime warranty. Though he rates it the most comfortable chair in his side-by-side camp chair comparison video, “At Home in the Future” vlogger, Eric Murrell does offer one caveat for owning the Stargaze: “It is an awesome chair and it is the one your entire family is going to fight over.” Consider yourself warned.
READ MORE: GEAR ESSENTIALS: CAMPING GEAR & APPAREL
Blue Ridge Chair Voyager Bench
Blue Ridge is known for their sturdy, handsome original Blue Ridge Chair. Constructed with the same beautiful wood and durable fabric, Blue Ridge’s Voyage Bench is perfect for two people and can accommodate up to 300 lbs. Unfolded, it measures 40″w x 21″d x16″h and weighs in at 11 lbs.
TRAVELCHAIR Big Bubba Chair
If being able to kick back and take a load off your feet at the end of a long day is a priority, the Big Bubba Chair is the seat for you. With an adjustable (and removable) footrest, adjustable contoured pillow, padded armrests, and a sling seat, TRAVELCHAIR created an ultra-relaxing seating option with the Big Bubba. While not lightweight at 12 lb 12.8 oz, the solid construction, steel legs, and ripstop polyester will accommodate a person who weighs up to 300 lbs.
Kelty Low Loveseat
Perfect for a pair, Kelty’s Low Loveseat has a sturdy steel frame and boasts adjustable armrests and insulated cup holders. The 600-denier polyester seat can accommodate up to 400 lbs. When packed up in the roll-tote storage bag, the Loveseat itself weighs 15 lbs. 6 oz. and packs down to 34.5 x 11 x 11 inches.
Thule X Tepui Camp Lounge
Thule’s X Tepui Camp Lounge makes hosting the whole family or simply your campfire guests for dinner a cinch with this loveseat, chair and table combination. The chairs all have cupholders and self-stabilizing feet, so the chairs will feel extra-sturdy beneath you. The bamboo Camp Lounge Table has adjustable height settings, making it easy to transition from dinner to board games. For ease of transport and packability, each chair and the table have their own storage sacks.
Header Image: New Legend 4×4