The 5 Best Camping Stools in 2021 Reviewed
The 5 Best Camping Stools in 2021 Reviewed
When it comes to camping, there’s a piece of outdoor gear you won’t regret buying: a quality camping stool. A compact stool takes up minimum storage space yet offers maximum convenience in a whole range of outdoor scenarios. Whether you use it to enjoy comfortable seating around a campfire instead of perching your behind on a hard log. Or take it with you when you go fishing, hunting, picnics, or even to the beach. A camping stool is always a good idea.
But with so many options on the market, how do you determine which products deliver on quality and value? Well, this is where we’ve made it easy for you! Our handy Best Camping Stool overview lists 5 of our favorite, highly-rated products. These stools/camp chairs score top marks on comfort, value-for-money, durability, and portability. Meaning you don’t have to look anywhere else to find the perfect fit to rest your legs...
In a hurry? Here’s the test winner after 10 hours of research:
5 Best Camping Tools - Overview
Discover the rest of the Best Camping Stools in our overview below, and get inspired to upgrade your camping gear with this affordable, functional, and most importantly: comfortable, piece of outdoor furniture:
1. ALPS Mountaineering Tri-Leg Stool
- Powder-coated steel frame and 600D Polyester fabric provides strength and stability for a long lasting use
The ALPS Mountaineering Tri-Leg is a highly-rated tripod stool with outstanding customer reviews. Made by an expert brand in outdoor gear, you can be certain the product adheres to an excellent quality standard and is a durable investment for your camping comfort.
The ALPS Mountaineering Tri-Leg has an open size of 14 x 14 x 16 inches, and a folded size of 3 x 3 x 23 inches. This collapsible camping stool weighs 2 lbs and has a weight capacity of up to 250 lbs. The design is made of heavy-duty, powder-coated steel that is both durable, and lightweight. The seat cover is another top material choice: water-resistant 600d polyester. And the best news? Even though ALPS Mountaineering has used first-class material for the construction of the stool, the brand has kept the pricing very affordable. Making it a great-value, budget-friendly choice in folding camping chairs.
The sturdy stool also includes a handy carry bag for extra portability. And even includes a carry strap built-in to the stool in case you want to move it safely on the spot, without damaging the seat cover or tri-legs. Do note that the ALPS Mountaineering Tri-Leg stool is slightly lower than regular camping stool. Its 16-inch height may fall a bit short if you want a higher perch. And since the legs are not adjustable, you don't have the option to configure it to a seat height of your choice.
A compact consumer favorite
Customer reviews rate it as a solid choice in outdoor gear. With hundreds of 5-star rating, we have no doubt this stool will make any consumer a happy camper. The ALPS Mountaineering Tri-Leg is praised for its value, lightweight silhouette, ease-of-storage, compact dimensions, and comfort. Reviews confirm that even though it's very affordable, it is still well-made, not compromising on quality.
Minor cons mentioned are that its compact sizing might just be a bit 'too compact' for larger campers. Meaning that even though it has the weight capacity to support campers up to 250lbs, its smaller seating area may not be the most comfortable for larger, or heavier, outdoor enthusiasts. Also, the included carry sack/storage bag does not come with a handle, only a drawstring closure/strap. Which kind of hampers the portability when folded in the sack.
That said, for the affordable price listed and the premium materials used in its construction, we reckon this is still a great investment. It may not be the biggest or tallest stool, but the ALPS Mountaineering Tri-Leg is certainly one of the most lightweight and compact when folded.
2. Coleman Rambler II Camp Stool - 2-Pack
The Coleman Rambler II is a basic, yet functional stool made of durable, top-class materials. The sturdy design lends itself to multifunctional usage due to the larger, flat seating area. Of course, its main purpose is to serve as a comfy stool to rest your legs. But, unlike tripod stools, you can also use this two-leg design as a makeshift table, or footrest, as it has a stable, completely flat (seating) surface.
The Coleman Rambler II Camp Stool has an open size of 12 x 14 x 17 inches, and a folded size of 3 x 3 x 24 inches. This lightweight camping chair only weighs 1.5 lbs and has a weight capacity of up to 225 lbs. The product's frame is made of lightweight aluminum and its spacious seating area of sturdy, yet soft polyester. Do note that the stool is not adjustable in seating height. Meaning you'll have to make do with its pre-set dimensions.
Don't be alarmed by the product pricing of the Coleman Rambler II Camp Stool in this overview. We've actually listed a 2-pack, meaning that you'll be able to share the stool's convenience with a friend or partner. Yes, we know that even when you divide the price by two, it's still not the cheapest of stool. However, with Coleman as a brand, you know you're paying a bit more for premium durability and performance. An expert in outdoor gear, Coleman is a solid choice for camping accessories, and we reckon these stools still offer great value-for-money.
Stool, footrest, and table
Other campers give the Coleman Rambler II top marks for its compact sizing, comfort, and lightweight portability. Outdoor enthusiasts say it's the perfect addition to your campsite convenience. Acting as a comfy perch for roasting s'mores round a fire, or a nifty footrest to really put your legs up. The design also scores 5-stars for quality and durability, as backpackers and campers confirm it lives up to the high-quality standard that Coleman is known for.
Minor cons are that the seat is not adjustable in height. The nylon polyester seating fabric is quite thin and may be prone to punctures or rips when not handled with care. And the stool does not come with a carry bag/storage sack, which - combined with its slightly awkward folded dimensions, makes it less portable. We, therefore, wouldn't recommend it for hikers and backpackers. However, for car campers looking for a small and compact stool that doubles as a mini-table or footrest: this may be your versatile match.
3. GCI Outdoor PackSeat
The GCI Outdoor PackSeat is lightweight tri-leg camping stool with excellent durability. For us, GSI Outdoor is one of our go-to brands for quality outdoor gear, and we're happy to report that this comfy stool does not disappoint. As one of the best-sellers in camping equipment, it's a 5-star consumer favorite, rated highly for its portability, solid construction, and value.
The GCI Outdoor PackSeat has an open size of 5 x 14.2 x 20.5 inches, and a folded size of 3.9 x 4.3 x 15.7 inches. Weighing only 1.3 lbs, it is one of the lightest stools on the market, but it still boasts an impressive 250 lbs weight capacity. The product's frame is made of powder-coated aluminum and features a special 'Anti-Splay Reinforcement Panel'. This panel holds the legs securely in place, whilst adding leg strength and stability. The benefit is that the tri-leg design feels well-balanced and sturdy, with less risk of bending or tipping.
We also like that the GCI Outdoor PackSeat is slightly higher than regular tri-leg stools. The design offers an approximate 21-inch seat height. According to reviewers, the few extra inches it has over its competitors make the seat more comfortable and ergonomic for taller campers.
Carry bag and carabiner included
Another perk is that the GCI Outdoor PackSeat includes a handy carry bag with a closure strap. This carry case/bag also comes with a buckle and carabiner, allowing you to easily attach the compact bundle to a hiking belt, backpack, or tote.
Customer reviews on the GCI Outdoor PackSeat are overwhelmingly positive. Hikers and backpackers confirm that this handy portable chair is lightweight enough to carry in, or clip-on, a backpack. The included carry sack is also a bit hit, with many reviewers commenting on the easy portability.
Minor cons mentioned are that even though the stool is tall, its seating area might still be a bit on the small side for larger campers. And some reviewers report it's not the most comfortable chair around. Also, a few consumers say that the poles can rip through the seat material after intensive wear and tear.
That said, overall reviewers agree that this is definitely one of the best camping chairs out there if compactness, portability, and lightweight appeal are your key criteria.
4. TravelChair Slacker Chair
- DURABLE FABRIC: The Slacker is engineered with durable Nailhead fabric and 600d Ripstop polyester for dependability on and off the trail.
The TravelChair Slacker Chair is an affordable tri-leg camping stool that can be collapsed to a backpack-friendly size, ideal for taking a well-deserved break on trails or treks. This portable stool by TravelChair is budget-friendly and offers the same convenience and quality as similar designs by popular outdoor brands, but with a slightly more attractive price-tag. If the brand behind a product is not important to you, and you love a great deal, then this could be your perfect match.
The TravelChair Slacker Chair has an open size of 12 x 14 x 20 inches, and a folded size of 3 x 3 x 24 inches. This tripod stool is slightly heavier than the other tri-leg designs on this list, as it weighs 2.2 lbs. However, it also has the biggest weight capacity of all tripod stool, supporting to 275 lbs. The product's frame is made of sleek powder-coated steel, whilst the seating surface is premium 600d polyester. This type of ripstop polyester is water-resistant and less prone to ripping, and we're pleasantly surprised that for the low price listed the stool still adheres to such a high-quality standard.
Though this collapsible stool comes to an integrated velcro strap for easy storage and packing, it does not include a carry bag. In all fairness, for the price listed, we understand the manufacturer couldn't include all the bells and whistles. However, we're slightly disappointed it not even come with a storage sleeve to keep the product safe between uses. That said, the integrated velcro strap does allow you to mount it on a backpack, but we would have preferred a carry bag with a handle or cord.
Budget-friendly, compact design
Other outdoor enthusiasts rate this collapsible tri-leg stool highly for its budget-friendly appeal and confirm that even though it's not the most sturdy or durable, it will still keep you firmly perched with excellent stability. Though be warned: even though this product has a very impressive weight capacity, the actual seating area is still on the small side. Which means that lounging for hours on end on this foldable stool might not be the most comfortable option.
Other minor cons mentioned are the lack of carrying bag/storage sack. Its weight, which at 2.2 lbs is reported to be a bit on the hefty sides for hikers and backpackers. Also, some reviewers claim that it's not the most stable, which can make it feel more like a rocking chair than a camping stool. There are also a few reviews that suggest that the construction isn't the most first-class, with the carrying strap and stitching at risk of coming loose after repeated usage. But, for the budget price listed, we think it's more than fair to expect some wear and tear in the long-run. Indeed, this stool may not hold up for many years. However, considering its affordability, we reckon you'll still get money's worth from this cheap and cheerful option.
5. Aoutacc Ultralight Folding Camping Stool
- ❤️Material:7075 Aerospace-grade aluminum alloy bracket +600D Oxford cloth.(Plesse check if the stand is inserted before sitting down!)
The Aoutacc Ultralight Folding Camping Stool is the lightest stool on this list with also the most compact packing space to match. Plus, we're quite partial to its chic black and gold aesthetics, adding a bit of 'glamping' to your camping. Another pro is that the Aoutacc Ultralight Folding Camping Stool is very affordable, making it accessible to all consumers, even though on a tighter budget.
The Aoutacc Ultralight Folding Camping Stool has an open size of 10 x 11.8 x 12.4 inches. Unfortunately, the product description does not list a folded size, however, in the product pictures, it's clear the stool takes up minimal space when deconstructed. Actually, when compared to a normal-sized smartphone, it's only a tad bigger. The super-lightweight design only weighs 0.8 lbs and has a weight capacity of up to 220 lbs.
Do note that this is not a heavy-duty design, but a very petite stool. It's super compact size, minimal seat height, and smaller seating area may make it uncomfortable/unsuitable for larger camping enthusiasts. And if you want a stool that can comfortably accommodate a slightly more 'voluptuous' behind, you might want to skip this one. That said, if you're looking for the lightest and most compact option that will not weigh you down on trails: this can be your perfect match.
Petite, lightweight, and fully foldable
The product's frame is made of ultralight aluminum alloy with stainless steel rivets, whilst the seating surface is premium 600d polyester. The legs of this stool are hollow and have a strong elastic snap on the inside for quick assembly. The Aoutacc Folding Camping Stool also comes with a handy storage bag with a drawstring closure to keep it safe when not in use. As the stool has a flat top surface, you can also use it as a makeshift table, or footrest, making it slightly more versatile than tri-leg designs.
Overall, customer reviews on the Aoutacc Ultralight Folding Camping Stool are very positive. Campers love the design's super lightweight appeal, excellent portability, and sleek aesthetics. The major con mentioned in negative reviews is the stool's size: which is indeed, very compact. A complaint is that the design's small dimensions make it inadequate or uncomfortable.
That said, we think part of its attraction is the small dimensions. It's simply a question of expectations. As long as you're aware you're buying a very lightweight, compact stool that sits low to the ground, this little gem should definitely satisfy your camping needs.
Which is 'The Best Camping Stool' for your needs, is completely up to your requirements. Every item on this list scores top-marks on value, portability, and functionality. So, rest assured, you can't make a bad choice, as they are all real value products. That said, if you're looking for a durable, high-quality stool made by a premium brand in outdoor gear, consider the ALPS Mountaineering or GSI Outdoors stools. However, if you're looking for the most lightweight option with the smallest packing dimensions, you can't get much smaller than the Aoutacc Ultralight Folding Camping Stool. Do note that the smaller the stool, also the lesser its weight capacity and sturdiness. If you haven't made your mind up about which product from this Best Camping Stool overview is your perfect fit, check out our FAQ section below for more info on how to find your ideal match.
Though every product on this list is a great choice, the GCI Outdoor PackSeat would be top of our wishlist. This foldable tri-leg design offers excellent value-for-money, only weighs 1.3 lbs, and comes with a handy carry bag included. Why do we prefer this style over other tripod stools? Well, its Anti-Splay Reinforcement Panel at the base of the frame gives the stool extra stability and balance. This clever addition gives it the edge over competitors. Another perk is the relatively tall 21-inch seat height, which adds to its comfort. Also, GCI Outdoors is a trusted brand in outdoor gear, and we think any camper can safely rely on the brand's expertise to create a comfy, functional, and durable stool to last you for many camping trips to come.
Best Camping Stool FAQ
How to find the Best Camping Stool
When you’re planning to buy a camping chair, there are a few key factors that may help you decide on your perfect fit. Camping and outdoor stools come in all shapes and sizes, and knowing about the different options will help you narrow down your search. Some key factors of camping stools/camp chairs are:
Packing Size & Weight
Though most camping stools are already quite lightweight due to their compact sizing, weight can still be a deciding factor when trying to find your perfect match. The packing size and weight of a stool will determine whether you can easily slip it in your backpack, ideal for hikers or outdoor activities, or whether it is more suited to car camping, tailgating, and adventures with a fixed campsite.
This is why we always advise you to double-check the packing dimensions, and not just the product dimensions, of a stool. Even though some brands describe their products as super compact, you might find that’s more of a marketing ploy than an accurate description. And the last thing you want is to be disappointed by a bulky, heavy stool that weighs down on your camping adventures.
Also, we'd recommend picking a camping stool that comes with a carrying case/carry bag. This helps with compact storage and makes it easier to pack, plus a carrying bag keeps your stool safe and all the parts secured when not in use.
Another ‘weighty’ factor is the stool’s capacity. Every product has a different weight capacity, or in simpler terms: how many pounds/lbs it can handle before collapsing. Whilst most stools are sturdy enough to support the average-sized adult, some are more heavy-duty than others. If you are slightly larger, or heavier, than the average camper, ensure you pick a stool with a higher weight capacity to avoid the frame from bending or snapping.
Generally, camping stools come in 2 common styles: a tripod-leg design and a two-leg fold design. A tripod stool is often regarded as slightly more stable, as it has an ‘extra leg’ to help balance out your weight. That said, two-leg fold designs often have a sturdy frame that still offers plenty of stability and support. So it’s more a matter of personal preference than one being ‘better’ than the other. Do note that a tripod stool is often adjustable in seat height, whilst a two-leg foldable design often features a non-adjustable frame.
Other design-elements of a stool may include features such as a swivel seat, side pockets, mesh pockets, a drink holder, a cup holder, a footrest, a backrest, and even armrests. Though, when you start adding on all these 'extra's', stool turns more into a camping chair.
That said, maybe that is exactly what you are looking for. However, in our overview we've zoomed-in on typical camping stools instead of folding chairs; as we consider this a different product category. So, if you prefer a camping seat that doesn't just cushion your behind, but also offers back support, a headrest, or even works as a recliner: you'd be better of investing in an outdoor chair, for example, a backpacking chair/beach chair/camping chair, than a basic camping stool.
Camping stools can be made of a wide range of materials. Though manufacturers predominantly use steel frames and aluminum frames, and polyester fabric for the seating area. A steel frame is durable and sturdy, providing plenty of support on uneven undergrounds. There are some stools made of BPA-free plastic, but we wouldn't recommend these for camping; as they simply lack performance and durability. For us, a steel frame is a way to go.
For the seating area, polyester fabric is a solid choice. In most cases, the polyester fabric used is either water-resistant or quick-drying, durable, and not prone to tearing/fraying. Be aware that the quality of the polyester fabric may differ from product to product. If you want premium-grade quality, look for a stool with a ripstop polyester or 600d polyester seating area. These first-class polyester fabric types are extra-strong and water-repellent and will outlast cheaper low-grade materials. Ensuring you'll be able to enjoy your comfy stool for many camping trips to come!