A solid hiking chair is everyone’s best friend after a long day of exploring, but not every chair is up to the job. Does the Helinox Chair Zero fit the brief?
Chairs. They always seem to have our backs. But with the sheer number and variety of hiking chairs on the market, finding the right one for the job can be tricky. When it comes to hiking though, there are a few characteristics that a hiking chair simply must-have. It has to be light, comfortable, durable, stable, compact and user-friendly. Helinox have been working away at hiking chairs for a while, so without further ado, let’s see how the Helinox Chair Zero stacks up.
Weight & Capacity
Weighing in with a packed weight of 510 grams, the Chair Zero is the lightest chair Helinox produces and one of the lightest of the foldable chairs on the market. To put that into perspective, it’s lighter than both a standard 600ml bottle of water and exactly 511 grams of pasta. Lightweight baby! So you can say goodbye to the days of stressing about your pack weight, adding this compact bum rest to your kit is a no brainer. At its size, you can also easily slide it into the side pocket of your hiking pack, making it accessible at any stage throughout your adventure.
While we’re on the topic of weight, the capacity of the Chair Zero is a staggering 120kg. This is thanks to both the lightweight material with a reinforcing grid of high-tech non-stretch thread from which the seat is constructed and its advanced DAC alloy frame poles.
Ease of Assembly
Setting up the Chair Zero on the go is easy peasy. I often live on the edge and enjoy putting things together without the instructions, but you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure out how it all fits together. The frame assembly is very intuitive, and once you’ve secured the poles in their sockets, all you have to do is wrap the seat fabric over the top and voila!
The chair packs away as easily as it comes together. Just deconstruct the frame, secure the poles together with a rubber band and roll it all up with the seat fabric. Once you’ve popped it into the pack away bag, stow it and you’ll be off and racing ‘til your next pit stop.
Design & Comfort
All in all, I’ve been pleased with the performance and comfort of the Helinox Chair Zero. Fully set up, it sits lower to the ground than most camping chairs you would’ve sat in, so you do have to bend your knees just a touch more to get into it, but after all, we did get outside to get closer to mother nature, so that didn’t bother me too much.
The seating angle keeps you relatively upright, allowing you the option to sit with your legs completely outstretched or bent at the knees and still be stable in the chair. Even when used at the beach on uncompacted sand, the chair still held its ground, though due to the weight of the Chair Zero, you do have to be careful not to lean too far either side of the seat.
Due to the design and portability of the chair packed away, I did find myself keeping it in the car just in case an opportunity arose to break it out for a cheeky sunset session.
If you’re looking for a lightweight and compact companion for hikes of any length, the Helinox Chair Zero is a great option. At $169.99, it might burn a slightly larger hole in your pocket, but is well worth the money if you consider the use you’ll get from it over the years. It’s been designed and created specifically for those looking for a sturdy hiking chair that doesn’t break your back along those longer multi-day hikes but also has the ability to be repurposed and used on any trip into the outdoors.
Photos by Samuel Ward
Jono was sent the Helinox Chair Zero for testing and was allowed to keep it afterwards. He was allowed to say whatever the heck he wanted about it in this review.
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