BEST SEAT IN THE HOUSE

HELINOX SUNSET AND CAMP CHAIRS ARE LIGHT AND COMPACT WHEN PACKED AWAY, BUT ARE THEY COMFORTABLE?

WORDS AND PHOTOS STUART JONES

Camp chairs are getting more comfortable all the time, though that comfort comes at a price, with many chairs now taking up too much storage space in 4x4s. For those looking for an option that gives back some space, these Helinox chairs are worth a thought.

When packed in their zippered mesh carry bags the Sunset and Camp Chairs are less than 51cm long and 1.5kg each, so they’re light and compact enough to fit in anyone’s space-challenged vehicle.

But to be honest, I was a little discouraged when I first saw them. “Too much of a pain,” I said, staring at the chair seat and pile of alloy poles. However, the poles are spring-loaded and clip together in an idiot-proof manner. The seat itself then fits to the frame via support holes, and the job is done. It doesn’t take much longer to prepare than the seats we usually drag around in our trucks.

How do they perform comfort-wise?

Well, they give plenty of support. I preferred the Camp Chair to the Sunset Chair, which is the more lounge-style model. The Sunset even has a tote bag that attaches with a concealed Velcro flap, so that you can use a towel or jumper as a head rest.

Over a four-day weekend, the only complaint I had was that there wasn’t a place to hold my beer. The chairs are strong and supported all our campers without a problem. They are rated to hold up to 145kg.

We did, however, notice when coming back to camp a couple of times that of all the chairs at our site, only two had blown over – the very light Helinox chairs. From then on, when we left camp to explore we pulled both the Helinox chairs away from the campfire. It’s not a serious issue, but something to keep in mind.

They’re not cheap. The Sunset Chair’s RRP is $196 ($174 online direct) and the Camp Chair’s RRP is $188 ($158 online direct). But they’re a good option nonetheless. We were pleasantly surprised by their overall package, not least by their comfort.

Small and light, they are perfect for those with space-challenged vehicles, and they’re good for the fishermen and walkers among us.

RATED

AVAILABLE FROM: www.helinox.com.au RRP: Camp Chair $188.00; Sunset Chair - $196.00 WE SAY: Compact and light.

Ideal for backpacking.