Friday, May 5, 2017

Good Gear - Topnaca Ultralight Camping Pillow

It's almost the weekend and I'm hoping to get a hike in, so let's take a break from the story and talk hiking gear...

If it wasn't clear already, I like to hike and backpack.  With that hobby comes a certain amount of gear that you need to have.  I always keep an eye out for bargains, but since I'm pretty frugal, I am pretty choosy about what I purchase.

For that reason, I avoided purchasing a backpacking pillow for a long time.  Since all of the pillows I saw at REI were either bulky or expensive (or both) I figured I could just stick my extra clothes in a stuff sack and that would be good enough.  But I was never really comfortable and didn't get as good of sleep as I could have.  As a side-sleeper, I needed something more substantial.

So, I started looking around.  The nice Sea to Summit pillows at REI started at around $39, which was more than I wanted to pay.  I also saw where some people used those little inflatable pillows that you find in hospital beds.  They are dirt cheap, but the durability and comfort just didn't seem all that great to me.

Eventually, I stumbled across the Topnaca Ultralight Camping Pillow on Amazon.  It fit the bill at only 2.5 oz and about $10, so I decided to take a flyer on it.

Topnaca Ultralight Camping Pillow
Great backpacking pillow for not much $$

Much to my surprise, this thing is great!  It's comfortable and has a nice texture to it.  It's quick to inflate and deflate, packing down very small.  On the downside, the little case it comes with is pretty flimsy and useless, so it will get left behind on future trips.

In my opinion, while the case is flimsy, the build quality of the pillow itself looks and feels comparable to the significantly more expensive Sea to Summit pillows.  It's light, comfortable, and beats the pants off of a pile of clothes in a stuff sack.  At a mere $9.99, it is about a quarter of the cost of the competition, which puts it right in line with Mr. Money Mustache's recommendation that you should try to spend about 25% of what the average person would spend on the same thing.  So, if you need a backpacking pillow and don't want to spend a ton of cash, try this thing out.


Note:  This is NOT a paid advertisement.  It's just a piece of gear that I bought and like.  I included an Amazon affiliate link, so if you happen to buy it using the link above, I'll get a percentage of the sale at no cost to you.  If that bugs you, open a new browser window, browse to Amazon directly, and search for the product name.  I will get nothing, and that's perfectly fine.

Note 2:  If you do decide to try one out, let me know what you think of it in the comments below.

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