Gear Review // Helinox Chair Zero High-Back

Whenever there’s a brand that delivers a new take on a product or solves a really tricky problem in a smart way, they’re usually the brand names that become shorthand for the product itself. ‘Hey, can you lend me a Thermarest and a Goretex?’ 

So when it comes to giving massive amounts of take-a-load-off comfort around camp, it’s no surprise when a design-led business brought out a new-look lightweight bit of kit called ‘Chair One’ in 2012, that the name Helinox has been the go-to in lightweight compact camp chairs ever since.

“Helinox” – shorthand for “chair”.

What makes Helinox different (and the envy of cheap copies) is they’ve led from this design focus, putting time and money into R&D and as a result, continue to deliver the best products that just work. They do what they say on the box and are the types of things I save up for, rather than settle for a cheap imitation… I bought myself a Ground Chair in 2021!

Already pretty impressed by the qualities of the Ground Chair, I was interested to take their newest, ultra-lightweight kid-on-the-block for a run – the Chair Zero – High Back. 

Finally! A lightweight Helinox chair with a high back. Bliss. (Photo: Prue Wolfe)

When you’ve got to carry everything on your back for a weekend, a week… or a month, where every gram counts (for some more than others… you know who you are!) choosing the lightest and most compact option for sitting comfortably, is a no brainer.

Chair Zero High Back (left) and standard Chair Zero (right). (Photo: Prue Wolfe)

To be honest, a Helinox is one of those bits of gear that kinda ruins you for life. It’s like pulling open that mysterious curtain into business class and never wanting to go back. It solves the problem of never being able to fully relax your body when sitting around camp. Nope, that rock you’re sitting on or that tree you’re leaning against just ain’t gonna cut it. 

This new Chair Zero High-Back takes the effortless relaxation of being able to drop your hips just a little lower than your knees that extra step further by giving me what I’ve always wanted from a lightweight chair – a headrest.

Easy and fast to setup

All hail the mighty gods and goddesses of relaxation! This folding chair lets me release and rest my entire body, by being at the complete mercy and support of the chair. When my head starts to nod around the campfire and I can’t bear to hold it up anymore – the Chair Zero – High Back has got me… literally. It’s definitely my favourite feature and I can let my head fall back whilst zoning out to the sunset or listening to the creek float by.

Slightly smaller dimensions in the seat hollow allows for the high back.

On practical things, it is fast and simple to set up and the fabric is quick-drying and easy-clean. According to Helinox, it weighs 690 grams (my scales had it at 600 grams without the carry bag), diameter 30-35 cm, is 40 cm long and can sustain 120 kg. Speaking of the capacity, due to the engineering of the high back frame, the specs of the hollow in the chair (where your bum goes) is a bit smaller than the standard Chair One. If you’re on the hippy side, you may find the standard Chair One more comfy.

I’m now ruined for life.

I used a loan chair for this sponsored review post. “You can buy my time, but you can’t buy my opinion.”

The Chair Zero – High Back is due for launch March 2022. Grab your own here.

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