REI offers their comprehensive list of the best camp chairs that are sold at their co-op for 2020. We’ve seen every option under the sun as we’ve camped and hiked in the Sequoia and Kings Canyon, and we’re curious what chairs made the top list. We have noticed that this list is for camp chairs, so the backpackers sauntering across the John Muir Trail may not find their car camping options to their liking, but its a solid list.
Their chair testing testing methodology considers numerous features that includes a chair’s comfort, its stability, and even its cup holders. Buying advice for use and design also make the list.
Our testers stayed close to their homes, camping in the Tetons, picnicking along Washington’s Snoqualmie River, roasting s’mores in Idaho’s Big Holes, hauling their gear through Wyoming’s Gros Ventre Mountains and chilling in their yards. After a season of hard sitting, each tester scored every chair on comfort, stability, portability, ease of use and durability. We averaged their scores to come up with this list of seven chairs. The Big Agnes Big Six Armchair, REI Co-op Flash Trail Seat, REI Co-op Outward Low Lawn Chair and Mountain Summit Gear Loveseat scored high in all categories, relative to their intended uses (car camping versus backpacking). The Helinox Chair Zero, GCI Outdoor Freeform Zero Gravity Lounger and Helinox Chair Two Rocker scored high in most categories.REI article by by Lily Krass
The most popular chair style we’ve seen in action is the Helinox Chair Zero which seems to be a superstar choice among backpackers weighing a pound yet supporting a grizzly bear sized hiker at 265 pounds. Its compact design packs down to the size of a water bottle, and one of their reviewers even put it in a bear canister. We prefer to put peanut butter in those canisters instead of chairs, but we salute them for their creative packing effort. The price at the time of publishing for the chair is $119.95, but keep your eye out for their sales. Their larger version is the rocker which is also awesome at 2.5 pounds.