Don’t you hate having to sit on a hard rock or just directly on the ground after a long day of hiking?
Personally, unless I’m hammock camping where I can more comfortably relax after a long day on the trails, I always used to hate sitting down on the ground and resting my legs or just watching the fire before it was time to go to sleep for the night.
This lead me to going online to start my search for the best backpacking chair that I could take with me so that I would have somewhere comfortable to sit after setting up my tent and settling down for the night.
With a dedicated chair it’s a lot more comfortable to sit by a campfire or just relax with your feet up on a log while enjoying the surrounding scenery.
The one problem I quickly ran into is that many of the fold up and portable backpacking chairs that I came across were quite bulky and on the heavy side, with a majority of them weighing more than 10 lbs.
Every year it seems that there are always surprising advances in the lightweight design and portability of backpacking gear, chairs included, and when I did some more research I was able to come across quite a few suitable options.
Some of the different chairs for backpacking that I found ended up being rather lightweight, with a few of them even weighing around 2-3 lbs.
Of course this is definitely going to add a little bit of extra weight to your backpack, but for some people like me this really turns out to be worth it in the long run, especially when you can comfortably relax at your campsite after a long day hiking through the woods or across rough terrain.
Feel free to check out my different recommendations if you’re looking for a lightweight backpacking chair to use the next time you’re heading out on an outdoor adventure, and scroll down to the bottom part of this post to checkout my helpful buyers guide.
The Best Chairs for Backpacking
Big Agnes Helinox (Best Hiking Chair)
The Big Agnes Helinox is a great choice if you’re looking for an ultralight, but still comfortable and supportive, backpacking chair to take with you on your next trip.
One of the main reasons that this is my top recommendation is because the Helinox actually comes with a dedicated back support, so it’s not like when you’re sitting in one of those chairs with a stool design, and it’s rather comfortable to use when you’re out in the backcountry.
Coming in at just under 2lbs in total weight, the Big Agnes Helinox isn’t as heavy as some of the alternatives, and all but the most ultralight backpackers should have no problem considering this extra weight if they’re looking to be more comfortable after a long day and have somewhere proper to sit.
The chair itself features a lightweight aluminium frame and uses a polyester material for the sitting area, with a total weight support limit of up to 320lbs.
Setting it up is really easy and it quickly opens up into position thanks to the self locating shock cord technology that it comes equipped with.
The mesh fabric on the back and the bottom sides of the sitting area help to improve ventilation and can cool you down during the warmer summer months, especially if you are hiking in humid weather and want to feel a nice summer breeze on your back.
Despite being a decent sized chair, the Big Agnes Helinox folds down rather small and you can choose to either strap it to the outside of your backpack or pack it inside without worrying about it taking up too much additional space.
I would definitely recommend taking a look at the Big Agnes Helinox if you’re looking for a lightweight backpacking chair that you can use for more comfort the next time you’re on a hiking or camping trip.
Crazy Creek HEX 2.0 (Best Lightweight Backpacking Chair)
The Crazy Creek HEX 2.0 is one of the more lightweight backpacking chairs that I recommend in this post, and it’s a good choice if you’re an ultralight backpacker but you still want a little bit of comfort and support when you’re out on the trail.
Interestingly enough, this chair doesn’t come with any legs, but having the padding underneath you as well as the back support is a lot more comfortable and helpful than not having anything at all.
Coming in at just under 1.5lbs, you can easily clip the Crazy Creek HEX 2.0 to the outside of your backpack without having to sacrifice any internal storage space, or you could just roll it up and strap it to the side depending on your preferences.
As for the design, it utilizes a high density EVA closed cell foam that house to provide you with comfort and offers insulation compared to if you were just sitting on the cold, hard ground.
The way it works is rather straightforward – simply open up the chair, adjust the straps to how you want to sit, and just kick back and relax.
Keep in mind that there is a 250lb weight limit.
For even more comfort and support, you can set up this chair against a tree or something so that you have a headrest or just use it on a log or rock for a better vantage point.
For ultralight hikers and backpackers looking for something lightweight to bring out into the backcountry, I would definitely recommend taking a look at the Crazy Creek HEX 2.0.
TravelChair Slacker (Best Hiking Stool)
The TravelChair Slacker is a folding tripod backpacking stool, and although I don’t usually prefer this style of seating, it can definitely be useful for hikers and backpackers.
The Slacker is designed using a powder coated steel frame, and this results in a very sturdy and durable design, making it a suitable choice for rugged backcountry use.
As for the seat design, it’s made from a ripstop polyester fabric and it comes with a weight capacity of up to 275lbs.
It comes in at around 2.2lbs in total weight, so not as light as some of the other alternatives, but it’s still a rather lightweight backpacking chair.
The reason I would recommend a backpacking stool such as this one is because it does feature a very portable and streamlined design, and it still allows you to get off the ground and into a more upright position.
The upright position is better for tending to a fire or fiddling around with your hiking camera, rather than having something that is more reclined.
The Slacker does pack down rather small, into a very streamlined and narrow shape, so you can simply strap it on to the outside of your backpack without having to sacrifice any of your internal packing space.
I would recommend taking a look at the TravelChair Slacker if you’re looking for a backpacking stool that offers an upright position and is still lightweight enough in design that you can hike with it for extended periods of time.
GCI Outdoor Quik-E-Seat
The GCI Outdoor Quik-E-Seat is a mix between a chair and a stool, making it a suitable choice if you’re looking for something lightweight and comfortable to use when you’re out on a backpacking trip.
Along with the stool portion, this seat comes with a backrest so you can actually lean back and relax a bit when you’re camping, hiking, fishing, or even hunting.
Coming in at around 3-4 lbs in total weight, the GCI Outdoor Quik-E-Seat isn’t the heaviest chair you could use, and it’s quite a reasonable weight if you’re looking to strap something to the outside of your backpack to use at your campsite.
The frame is made from a powder coated steel, so it’s pretty durable for regular use, and it can support a weight of up to 250 lbs.
As for portability, the GCI Outdoor Quik-E-Seat comes with a shoulder strap to make it easier to carry and it can be quickly opened or closed for easy setup and takedown.
One feature that I really like is that it comes with a water bottle holder so that you can really relax by the campfire with your water bottle or any other drink close by.
You should really check out the GCI Outdoor Quik-E-Seat if you’re looking for a backpacking chair that’s comfortable and offers back support while still being lightweight and portable.
ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous
The ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous is a folding backpacking chair that actually comes with armrests providing you with a more comfortable and enjoyable seating position.
The actual sitting area features a mesh material, so your back and bottom are able to breathe when you’re sitting down after a long day of hiking or exploring.
The frame is made from powder coated steel, which really helps with durability, and there is a total weight capacity of 300 lbs, so it’s a good chair if you’re a bigger person and you still want something comfortable to use out in the backcountry.
As for portability, the ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous is a little bit on the heavy side, coming in at around 7 to 8 lbs, so it’s better suited for car camping, but you can still take it backpacking if you’re not planning on hiking in very far.
It folds down quite small and it even comes with a carrying bag to help protect the fabric and to also make it easier to carry.
One more thing I like about it is the low profile design that provides a pretty decent recline when you’re sitting down and helps to give you a better view if you’re sitting around the campfire or at the edge of the lake.
Despite being a little bit on the heavy side, I would still recommend checking out the ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous if weight isn’t as much of an issue for you and you’re still looking for something comfortable to use for relaxing on your backpacking trip.
The Helinox Sunset is a very well-designed and practical backpacking chair if you’re looking for something lightweight and comfortable.
The total weight of the frame and fabric material comes in at around 3 lbs, so it’s not too heavy and you can easily strap it onto the outside of your backpack to bring with you to your campsite.
There is a carrying bag included, and this makes it easier to carry and also helps to protect the chair when you’re out on the trails.
Setting it up is rather easy, thanks to the single shock corded pole structure, and you can have it open and ready to use in just moments.
The mesh fabric design helps to keep you cool on those warm summer nights and the semi-reclined position is comfortable and a great choice if you still want a view of the sunset or campfire while you’re relaxing.
The ENO Lounger is a bit different than your standard chair for backpacking.
As you can probably tell from the photo, this is actually a hanging hammock chair, and if you’re going to be backpacking somewhere with a lot of trees then the ENO Lounger could be a good choice for you.
The Lounger is made from an aluminum frame, which helps to keep it lightweight, and it can support a weight limit of up to 250 lbs.
Getting it setup is quite straightforward and you just need to hang the Lounger from any thick tree branches or other sturdy objects nearby that can support your weight.
Once it’s hung up, you can adjust the recline position as well as the footrest into your preferred placement where you’re the most comfortable.
To make it easier to travel with, a stuff sack is included and the Lounger can be quickly taken down and packed away.
I’m a huge fan of ENO, especially with their different camping hammocks, so having a hanging chair like this one really helps to enhance my outdoor backpacking experience.
I would definitely recommend taking a look at the ENO Lounger if you’re looking for a unique way to comfortably relax after a long day out on the trails the next time you’re going backpacking.
If you’re not as worried about weight, or you spend more of your time car camping, I recommend checking out my article on the best camping chairs to take a look at some other options you have for outdoor seating.