Price: $55 (14-inch); $60 (17-inch)
Availability: August (pending Kickstarter funding)
Unique Features: Weighs less than a pound and telescoping legs let it pack down small for easy transport.
Upshot: The Hillsound BTR is so light and compact, you can stash it in the water bottle slot of your backpack and almost forget it’s there till you reach your campsite and have a seat that is much, much better than a rock (in case you were wondering what BTR stands for).
Who It’s For: Hikers and campers and anyone else who wants to travel light and chill just about anywhere on an instant seat.
Insight: Up till now, Vancouver, Canada-based Hillsound has been best known for producing affordable crampons and gaiters for adventurous outdoorsmen. That all changes with the Hillsound BTR, which I literally can’t stop raving about to anyone who will listen. It weighs a mere 12.2 ounces and is just 11.4 inches long. But when you pull out the telescoping legs (which magically lock out thanks to PhantomLock technology) and unfold the mesh seat, you’ve got a 14.4-inch tall stool perfect for relaxing next to a campfire, at a Sunday picnic feast or, heck, in a crowded airport.
Hillsound has also designed a slightly larger model that’s still only 13.7 ounces and 13.4 inches long, yet offers a more comfortable 17.7-inch tall seat. Both versions can support up to 265 pounds. I’ve been toting the bigger one around in a backpack, deploying wherever I damn well please and grappling with an obsession that is borderline unhealthy. The Hillsound BTR is over halfway funded on Kickstarter with a little over a week to go — and poised to make it much easier to take a load off.
We’re on the ground in Denver, getting a first hands-on with new 2020 outdoor gear. Read the Story