Right, let’s not beat around the bush. We are both basically in love with our Helinox camping chairs.
To many touring cyclists they are an unessesary luxury, contributing to the weight on our back wheel and putting us in the ‘glamping’ category of tourers.
But we don’t care, because after 8 hours in the saddle and completing 100km, relaxing back in our chairs, away from the dirt, insects and damp ground is quite simply; sublime. Let’s face it, camping can suck a bit sometimes so you need to make things as easy as possible for yourself.
Weighing just under 900 grams each, they are hardly heavy, and they pack down into a lightweight durable bag (roughly 14x4x5 inches). We permanently hang ours off the handles of our ortlieb rack bag with cable ties so they don’t take up space in our panniers. Our 1.5L water bottles sit very nicely on top.
Paddy and I enjoy having ‘chair set up’ races. They practically fit together themselves and our best record so far is just over 40s.
They are SUPER comfy (you can property lie back) and the mesh material ensures you don’t get too hot. The only improvement we might suggest is that they add a couple of mesh pockets to the sides…
They are not only useful for sitting in too. They come in handy when keeping food away from ants (by placing each leg in a dish of water at night) and they acted as a brilliant ‘scare shield’ when we needed to shoo away some vicious monkeys while having lunch one day. We also used them as deck chairs while enjoying a day on the beach.
We’re 5 weeks in so we’ll see how they hold up after 6 months on the road.
If you are a cycle tourer reading this, think again about investing in one of these… Granted, they are pricey (£75 each) but they have genuinely improved our camping experience and we probably camp more with them, saving us money along the way.
You deserve some comfort, so sit back and enjoy the view after a long hard day in the saddle.