I have been after a camping pillow for quite some time, I don’t find sleeping without a pillow comfortable and at home I use a Tempur Symphony Pillow, so I’m a little spoiled when it comes to sleeping in luxury. I can’t sleep on a folded top either, I’ve tried a few different brands and I have a Therm-A-Rest compressible pillow that I take family camping, it’s too big for my backpack so yet again no pillow.
I was walking around a trade outdoor show in July and I came across Sea to Summit they had a few items that caught my eye, I spotted some rather impressive sleeping bag liners and some very innovative sleeping mats and bags. These were especially interesting with us starting to get into backpacking and keeping my pack weight down, I had camped solo in the Peaks in February 2018 with lows of -6°c, which is quite chilly.
The Pillow arrived, and it was neatly packaged in its own little bag this was attached to cardboard hanger that included a description of the pillow, the first thing I noticed was the weight 195gram and that it’s only the size of my hand, so it wasn’t going to take up much space in my pack. When you’re backpacking the weight of things start to add without you noticing, your sleeping bag, sleeping mat, tent, cooker, food these are a few just off the top of my head. With the weight of my rucksack I’m looking at 7kg just for these, so I don’t want to add lots more weight.
We spent the weekend in Dartmoor a few weeks ago wild camping in Lustleigh and Trendlebere Down, we arrived Friday evening and the sun was disappearing, we needed to find a spot near water because we don’t carry water with us. We found a lovely fast flowing stream, it was starting to get dark, we pitched the tent and set up, my bed took the longest to get up and in. We had dinner in the moonlight and then got into bed, I blew up my pillow but not fully because I want my head to be able to sink into it, like with my foam pillow at home, I put the pillow under my mummy bag hood, this is a large pillow once inflated 56 x 36 x 14cm. I was straight off to sleep listening to the water in comfort, who said that backpacking means you have to rough it.
The pillow did sound a tiny bit crinkly at first and I thought that it may have been noisy when I put my head on it but not at all, I was pleasantly surprised. I slept soundly granted I’m not much of a mover in my sleep I tend to fall asleep on my back with my head to the right and I always awaken on my back with my head facing up, so a little corpse like. Once awake I had no stiff neck or aching in my spine between my shoulder blades, which I often experience without a suitable pillow, so all was great, I seem to have sorted my camping pillows woes.
The next night I was more tired from a day hiking around Dartmoor chasing waterfalls, it had also taken us longer to find somewhere to camp because they’ve closed off parts of the woods that you can camp in without notification. We didn’t pitch in the dark but after dinner it was soon dark, I slept from 22:30 until 7:30 quite soundly and snug.
I was going to publish this review a few weeks ago but then we got asked to test a family tent and this is when I got to thinking that people that family camp have issues with space and in many cases, they end up having to buy roof boxes or trailers, some even buy bigger cars. Keeping things small and light across all kinds of camping makes sense. So, I decided to take the Sea to Summit Aeros Deluxe pillow with me to show people that this pillow isn’t just for backpacking, you could even take it to the beach, for relaxing on the sand.
It’s lovely, comfortable and it’s a brilliant size, just like a pillow you would find at home, but a lot easier to transport. The pillow case so soft to the touch it feels nice against your face it’s made from super soft 50D quilted polyester with a high strength TPU bladder the bladder is safe to use in extremely icy temperatures it’s freeze-proof and it’s also UV stable so no need to worry if you’re using it in direct sunlight (on the beach for example) . It’s easy to blow up and deflates quickly due to the Multi-Function valve. I’ve been pleasantly surprised and really pleased with it on both of my camping adventures and I’m sure I will be for many trips to come.