Apr 17, 2011 at 11:43 am #1272388
Being a side sleeper combined with the fact that the only extra clothes I take are my sleeping clothes and my trail clothes are used under my pad to add some warmth so whats a good comfortable ul pillow that weighs under 3 ounces ?Apr 17, 2011 at 12:05 pm #1725638
@tomlikeLocale: Pacific Wonderland
Cocoon UL Air Core, I believe it's 2.7 oz., about $30. Has some synthetic insulation in it too, really comfortable!Apr 17, 2011 at 12:07 pm #1725640
The Exped Air Pillow is a nice choice, and on sale at amazon.com right now for $20.Apr 17, 2011 at 12:18 pm #1725645
@valsharLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
Goosefeet also makes a down pillow that is within the weight you are looking at.Apr 17, 2011 at 12:32 pm #1725654
@mikeclellandLocale: The Tetons (via Idaho)
I think I solved the pillow issue. I wrote about it in a recent book –
Here is an excerpt from the book:
Tip number 100 -The Pillow
I love a pillow under my head during sleepy time. The traditional camper will simply take a porky jacket, cram it into some big stuff sack and call it good.
If you are a true ultralight zealot, you’ll be sleeping in a very thin sleeping bag (or quilt) and comfort dictates that you'll wear all your clothes to bed. This means that there is nothing left over for your pillow.
You’ll spend roughly one third of any expedition asleep on your pad. This time is a vital component to your recovery and well being. If you need a pillow to sleep well, then don’t short yourself. There are plenty of tricked out camping pillows on the market. Very few are light enough to get called UL.
Here’s the simplest (and lightest) solution I’ve found. I’ll fill a very light stuff sack with partially inflated Ziploc baggies. I’ll blow air into them and zip them shut, and partially full is much better than beach ball tight. I use the thinner SANDWICH style rather than the dense FREEZER bags. I have an 8” x 14” stuff sack and I use 7 baggies.
Test it yourself before you go into the field, I tried different baggies over multiple nights, and the weight of my big head would end up deflating them all by morning. My R&D determined the baggies require a stout double zipper, so I use the kind of baggie with the DOUBLE ZIPPER, and it works great. Total pillow weight: 1.8 ounces. Replace the stuff sack with a wispy thin plastic grocery bag for even more weight savings.
Other UL pillow options are sight dependent. I’ve filled my backpack with pine cones and that was wonderful, but the only reason I could pull that off was because I found a huge pile of pine cones right near my sleep site. Sand in the backpack is very nice too, and tiny pebbles ain’t bad either.
–Apr 17, 2011 at 1:23 pm #1725671
– -K.T.- –Participant
Montbell UL pillow 2.4oz. And a Buff makes the perfect pillowcase.Apr 17, 2011 at 3:29 pm #1725732
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> Montbell UL pillow 2.4oz.
Yeah, neat beast.
CheersApr 17, 2011 at 4:10 pm #1725750
@milesbargerLocale: West Virginia
I, too, use and love the Montbell pillow.Apr 17, 2011 at 4:13 pm #1725753
I had the Montbell pillow…and thought it felt like a balloon.Apr 17, 2011 at 4:16 pm #1725755
@ouzelLocale: Pacific Northwest/Sierra
"Montbell UL pillow 2.4oz"
+1 No muss, no fuss, no bother. And all for a .6 oz penalty. I can live with that, although Mike C's Zip Loc idea is downright creative and worth a closer look, IMO.Apr 17, 2011 at 9:07 pm #1725898
My only question: Doesn't your face sweat resting against the stuff sack?Apr 17, 2011 at 9:14 pm #1725900
@kevperroLocale: Washington State
Spent years going without but now I'm an old wimp so I use the Exped. It is the only one I've tried but no regrets. Worth the carry weight for me.Apr 17, 2011 at 10:25 pm #1725915
@skauLocale: Southern California
I sleep on my side and as long as you don't fill it up and leave a little room than it is comfy.Apr 18, 2011 at 2:10 am #1725940
Hard to believe I'm the first in this thread to suggest Kookabay.
Ditto the comfort notes already offered by the Montbell fans … don't inflate it all the way (just like you'd do with inflatable sleeping pads).
About half the weight of the Montbell pillow (but smaller and thinner … 3.5" thick vs 3.9") or get the XL size, similar size and weight to Montbell but 5" thick.Apr 18, 2011 at 4:48 am #1725947
I've been through a lot of them. So far, all of the pneumatics feel like a balloon to me (tried Montbell, Exped & Kookabay). The best out of those was the Exped because of the profile and the quick deflation valve. I'm currently using a Western Mountaineering down pillow with some success but honestly, nothing quite duplicates the comfort of my Thermarest foam pillow. The problem with the TR is the weight (~7oz) and the bulk. The WM gives me a close match in comfort for 1/2 the weight and 1/3 of the bulk. I've been told that the Cocoon combination of air and insulation is fab but I haven't had a chance to try it in the field.
Don MeredithApr 18, 2011 at 5:28 am #1725956
I always carry a 4L waterbladder from Ortlieb. With 2-3 liters of water in it, it is also one of the most comfortable pillows I've ever used. You will want to put a fleece or something else around it for insulation (plus it feels more comfortable), but even if you bring a seperate sheath for your pillow/bladder, this will be one of the lightest options out there.Apr 18, 2011 at 5:32 am #1725957
– -K.T.- –Participant
Don, doesn't your WM pillow flatten out before morning? I picked one up and have been disappointed by this.Apr 18, 2011 at 6:53 am #1725971
Ken, the WM down pillow does flatten out with time but it hasn't been too big of an issue for me since I tend to move around a lot in my sleep. When I'm rolling from stomach to side, etc. I naturally move the pillow around and start working on compressing a new area. :)
Edit – I finally gave up on the WM pillow. It ultimately ended up compressing too much.Apr 18, 2011 at 9:03 am #1726027
@djaaronreedLocale: Central Rockies
The Montbell pillow is a great lightweight piece of gear, but I too feel it is a blow up balloon. Even when it is slightly deflated, it just isn't really comfortable. Don't get me wrong, I love it and still use it when low base weight is my goal, but it doesn't make me sleep well. Even with multiple nights in a row of use, I never adapt to it. It's the only piece of gear I don't get used to on the trail. What I like is that the pillow is pretty much bomb proof, I use it as a sit pad often and still haven't had a leak in 3-4 years of use!
For 90% of what I do the 7oz size small Thermarest pillow is my pillow of choice. It's relatively light, compact and big enough to cradle my head in comfort. I've tried others and always go back to the Thermarest.
By the way I am a side sleeper, so the pillow is a key piece of gear in my mind.Apr 18, 2011 at 9:07 am #1726029
Don, have you considered buying a cheapy memory foam pillow and cutting it to the smallest possible size? not sure how much it would wiegh, but I've been considering it, since I feel the same way you do about inflatable pillows. Seems like they would compress down well… though I guess probably wouldn't wiegh any less than the WM.Aug 18, 2011 at 7:52 pm #1770958
Do you use Ziploc brand? I couldn't find any sandwich size with a double zip, just the quart. Tried Kroger brand quart with double zip and Walmart quart freezer bags and neither of those hold the air. I'm hoping Ziploc brand will actually work or maybe my head is heavier than your's. :PAug 19, 2011 at 8:46 am #1771075
I have found Mike C!'s method to work great for me. I use Ziplock freezer bags (they've held air the best for my big ol' head). I've found that if I blow up two to near maximum capacity, they fit nicely together in my cook stuff sack (Outdoor Research orange ditty). When I place them side by side in the stuff sack, a nice crevice is formed between them that cradles my head (the cradle is best formed by facing the zippers toward one another). I then take my buff and slide it over the stuff sack for a nice pillow case. Clearly, this sort of thing is highly subjective, and I'm sure that my stuff sack size dictates a lot of the pillow's shape. That being said, it's the best option I've found and it comes at .5oz for the two freezer bags. Thanks Mike C!Aug 19, 2011 at 9:30 am #1771094
@daviddrakeLocale: North Idaho
I haven't tried Mike C!'s method yet (tho I intend to). What I've been doing has a reasonably small weight penalty (2.1 oz), is reasonably cheap, and somewhat multi-use.
I partly inflate a 2 liter platypus, wrap it in my trash compactor pack liner, and wrap that in my rain jacket. The rain jacket quiets the trash bag, and adds a bit more cush, but isn't really necessary. All that goes into a 10 liter silnylon stuff sack.
I find it very comfy, and a nice generous size. The stuff sack I've been using is an old Granite Gear #5 at 0.8 oz–of course, there are lighter options. The platy weighs 1.3 oz, and makes a good backup water carrier, but most places I prob. wouldn't carry it if I didn't use it for the pillow.Aug 19, 2011 at 10:36 am #1771106
I'd recommend a pillow from Cocoon. Mine is down and is probably not the lightest but it compresses well and it's worth it for the comfort.Aug 19, 2011 at 11:32 am #1771122
@dparkLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
This won't feel like a balloon.
I have a small piece of closed cell foam for a sit pad. (I'm sure many don't bother with this.) I either roll this up or if I want something thicker, incorporate anything I have left over(ie water bottle) and lash it in place with a piece of string. (Basically, secondary use for anything in my pack.) You can cover it with a bandana, plastic bag, stuff sac, Buff, etc for a clean surface on which to lie your melom.
The foam by itself is squishy and pretty comfortable. The water bottle makes it pretty firm so you may want to titrate to taste.
The only potential weight penalty is a sit pad but it won't deflate or pop.
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