Poll: Yay or Nay to Carrying Chair

This poll will close on 12-14-2018 at 09:39

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  1. #1
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    Default Chair or No Chair? (Section Hiker)

    I am a section hiker. Wondering the communities thoughts on bringing a rei flexlite camp chair on section hikes. Seems like it'd be nice to be able to sit normally after a long day. Weight is 28 oz

  2. #2

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    LOL I'm a section hiker, and i'm asking myself the same question each time. As always, it's the balance between weight and comfort. I guess the equation is the more staff you have to carry for comfort = higher the weight = less comfort you have.

  3. #3

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    I feel that I am not the best source to answer this but will throw my 2 cents in seeing as this is a section hiker thread (Don't see many of those threads in a thru hikers world) BUT:
    Do I want a chair after a 20-25 mile day? Yes
    Would the 20-25 mile day been tougher by carrying a camp chair? Yes
    Are there picnic tables at a lot of shelter locations? Yes
    Are there logs that can be used with a sit pad at most camp sites? Yes
    -Is this setup as comfortable as a folding chair? No
    -Does my back get tight and hurt do to no back support? Yes

    I guess my answer is I would like to have one but chose to eliminate that weight from my pack and in return make due with what is provided on the trail via picnic tables, logs, rocks or the good ol fashioned dirt.

  4. #4

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    It really depends on the trip. I pretty much always carry a sitting pad, but on short hikes where I am out more for slow and relaxing more than miles, I sometimes carry a chair. I have a flexlite and a crazy creek and it just depends on where I am going.

    I want one of those stargaze reclining chairs but can’t justify that much money for one for the amount I would use it. It it sure would be nice to camp on a bald or somewhere with a view on a clear night...

  5. #5
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    No chair - a sit pad and tree work just fine and saves the weight of a day's worth of food. Or I can sit back and relax in my hammock!

  6. #6
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    Along the AT there are many places to sit and rest for a few minutes during the day. Nearly every shelter has a picnic table and most established campsites have a log or two. About the only time you need to sit down is to cook dinner. The rest of the time your either walking or laying down.

    I've meet several thru hikers who started out with a chair, saying they were going to carry it the whole way. Guess what? A week later it's gone. If you do see someone with a chair, usually they are a section hiker and it is probably the first and last time they carry one. Although, I'm sure there will be someone who says they always carry a chair and love it.

    But out west it's a different story. One thing which annoyed me about the Colorado Trail and Glacier was there was nothing to sit on along the trail to take a break on during the day.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  7. #7
    Registered User ldsailor's Avatar
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    Buy a cheap, light sitting pad from Amazon. A chair is more weight and more hassle.
    Trail Name - Slapshot
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  8. #8
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    That's an extra 26 oz and additional bulk that I sure as heck wouldn't carry, but it's up to you since you'll be carrying it.

    However, for most people there comes a time — usually while climbing a long, steep hill on a hot, humid day — that they will curse the unnecessary weight and wish they could fling it into a ravine right then and there.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

  9. #9
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    Sit pad always. Butt needs it. Also, I need the insulation somewhere under me 1/3 of the year. I rather put the difference in ounces between pad and chair into a warmer sleeping bag 1/3 of the year.

  10. #10

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    Not an expert at all, but on the few overnight trips I've done, my chair (1.5 pounds) has been my favorite piece of equipment I've brought. At this point, I would probably cut weight on half a liter of water before I left my chair behind. For longer trips where I needed to haul more food and water, I guess I'd have to reconsider. But for short trips, it's coming with me.

    Edit to add: I clip mine to the outside of my pack.
    Last edited by mclaught; 12-04-2018 at 13:57.

  11. #11
    Registered User JPritch's Avatar
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    I've never had a problem finding a stump, rock, downed branch, shelter, table etc...to sit on. I carry a small sit pad that makes it more comfortable. For me it's not worth carrying the weight of a chair and having it take up that much space in my pack.
    While searching for that unknown edge in life, never forget to look home. For the greatest edge you can find in life is to stand in the protective shadow of those who love you.

  12. #12

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    Sit pad or an ultralight hammock (e.g. Hummingbird Hammock) for day trips will be a fraction of the weight.


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  13. #13
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mclaught View Post
    ...my chair (1.5 pounds) has been my favorite piece of equipment I've brought. ...
    And that's all that really matters!

  14. #14

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    I've never carried a chair in 50+ years of backpacking. There is always somewhere to sit.
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

  15. #15

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    IMO, a chair is only worthwhile if you're going to use it for hours daily. You can lean your back against something in a shelter, sit on the edge of shelter, picnic tables, perfect rocks, etc
    A leisure trip that you hike a few hours and then enjoy camp... yes. Everything else, it doesn't seem worth it unless the comfort is just really needed because of a back issue, etc

    I saw a few people with those chairs at a shelter with a view near the top of a peak... and it was well worth it for them because they enjoyed the comfort and were going to use it for hours, not cover a ton of mileage, etc

  16. #16
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    Camp...chair is umm for umm camping...not an absolutely necessary backpacking or hiking piece. Nice for car camping sitting around long hrs with a cold one watching the World Series on TV powered by a portable generator if tables, stumps, downed trees, trees, or rocks aren't available which isn't often that none of these are available. Most times I cowboy camp at the base of a tree or large boulder or sand dune using it as a backrest,... and wind block, heat sink, privacy/stealth camping screen, etc.

  17. #17
    MuddyWaters's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Climber714 View Post
    I am a section hiker. Wondering the communities thoughts on bringing a rei flexlite camp chair on section hikes. Seems like it'd be nice to be able to sit normally after a long day. Weight is 28 oz
    You cant "sit normally" in any chair you can carry.

    A sitpad makes rocks an logs a lot more comfortable
    Especially when wet

    A 1/8" x 20x60" ccf pad, weighs about 3 oz, and is fantastic for putting on ground to lay down on, or part on ground, part behind you leaning against rock or tree. Especially when ground covered in pointy things, or weeds. When folded in several layers, great for sitting on hard stuff.
    "Inevitably, a long distance hiker must choose between travelling light, and not travelling at all." - Earl V. Shaffer

  18. #18
    Registered User lonehiker's Avatar
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    I took a chair on a shorter hike this last summer (Uintah Highline trail) and enjoyed the comfort. I can see myself using it periodically but would probably leave it home for my long section hikes.
    Lonehiker

  19. #19
    Registered User soilman's Avatar
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    For me, sitting on a picnic table, rock, tree stump, etc. does not give the same level of comfort as a chair. I have never carried a chair backpacking, but wished I had one many times. Years ago my wife and I were on the MATC volunteer trail crew near Gulf Hagas Mt. We had to hike in about 1 mile to our base camp. I had brought two nylon folding chairs and packed them in. Every night after working on the trail the crew would fight over who would sit on the chairs versus the coolers or a log. Folding chairs are standard on the Konarock crew now.
    More walking, less talking.

  20. #20

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    I love my chair and it’s been coming along on more and more hikes. My back really loves it. Leaning against a tree or a stump doesn’t compare to the comfort that chair provides after a long, strenuous hike. I have the Alite Mayfly and gladly pay the weight penalty.

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