Ultralight backpackers prioritize minimizing weight, selecting gear purposefully. Some see a camping pillow as a luxury, considering its non-essential nature.
In this post, we’ll explore the camping pillow debate and answer the question: Do you really need one? We’ll also share key considerations for choosing if you opt for one. Let’s begin.
In the wilderness, far from home comforts, quality sleep is precious. For ultralight backpackers, it’s not just rest; it’s vital for safety and enjoyment.
On the trail, a clear mind is your greatest asset. Quality sleep allows your brain to process experiences, solve problems, and make sound decisions.
Poor sleep can lead to fatigue, irritability, and a decrease in overall morale. Conversely, a well-rested backpacker is more likely to have higher endurance levels and a more positive outlook on their journey.
Camping pillows offer advantages, but some ultralight backpackers debate carrying them due to weight.
However, nowadays, you can find ultralight pillow options weighing only 2-3 ounces (56-85g), making them worth considering.
Hence, it’s essential to consider these arguments and the scenarios in which pillows might not be the best choice:
While they do add some weight and take up space in your pack, let’s explore why pillows might be worth it:
To be candid, we endorse the use of a camping pillow. To assist you in making an informed decision, we’ve compiled expert tips and recommendations from experienced backpackers who have encountered this dilemma:
Also consider your sleeping position when choosing a camping pillow:
If you’re curious how to choose the perfect pillow in more detail, check out our dedicated post here.
As we’ve examined the pros and cons of pillows, one thing is clear: whether or not to carry a camping pillow is a personal choice.
Some ultralight backpackers value the comfort and improved sleep quality a pillow offers, even if it means a bit more weight to carry. They believe better sleep prepares them for the challenges of the trail. We’re in this group too.
On the other hand, minimalists argue for adaptability and creative solutions, dismissing the need for a dedicated pillow. In the end, it’s your call, but remember: backpacking is about the experiences, not just gear weight.
For the most ultralight camping pillows, check out our TOP 5 guide.
Yes, it is generally safe to not use a pillow while sleeping. However, the choice to use or not use a pillow depends on personal comfort preferences and individual sleep needs. Some people find pillows beneficial for neck support and comfort, while others may sleep comfortably without one.
Camping pillows are typically made from a variety of materials, including inflatable options made from durable plastics like polyester, compressible pillows with insulating materials like foam or down, and hybrid designs that combine inflatables with fabric covers. These materials are chosen to provide comfort, support, and portability for outdoor enthusiasts.