Hands-Down Comfort, Plus Elbow Room: NEMO Moonlite Reclining Chair Review

I've experienced my fair share of uncomfortable seating options during my outdoor adventures - from rocks and stumps to the bare ground. But if given the choice, I would always opt for a backpacking chair....

I've experienced my fair share of uncomfortable seating options during my outdoor adventures - from rocks and stumps to the bare ground. But if given the choice, I would always opt for a backpacking chair. Let's face it, unless you're in a hurry or limited by space or weight constraints, having a sturdy camp chair is a game-changer.

I stumbled upon the NEMO Moonlite Reclining Chair on a rainy afternoon in the majestic mountains of Colorado. Little did I know that this chair would become my go-to seating option for various activities. While the chair may be heavier and bulkier compared to other backpacking chairs on the market, it offers unparalleled comfort, breathability, and support. What sets it apart is its unique reclining feature – a luxury usually not found in backpacking chairs.

Image: using the adjustable toggles on the NEMO moonlite chair to recline The toggles for the reclining function are easy to operate; (photo/Mary Murphy)

The ability to recline is not just a frivolous add-on but a functional capability. Whether you're packing up your gear, cooking, or simply stargazing, having the freedom to adjust your seating position is a game-changer. The NEMO Moonlite's reclining feature provides customizability and comfort for users of different sizes and shapes. It also offers excellent balance on uneven terrains, making it a versatile option for various outdoor activities.

Image: Testing the reclining limits in the NEMO Moonlite chair; (photo/Chris Peters)

But the perks of the Moonlite chair don't stop there. Its innovative design also provides ample elbow room, making it ideal for a variety of tasks. Whether using it as a comfy belay station or a mobile office chair, the open space near the elbows allows for unrestricted movement. The lack of traditional woven fabric seats further enhances its versatility and comfort.

Image: One hole so far from an ember, but otherwise, this chair has held up well; (photo/Mary Murphy)

Durability is a significant concern when investing in outdoor gear. The NEMO Moonlite chair has proven to withstand the test of time and diverse weather conditions. Despite regular use, including backpacking trips and camping adventures, it remains in excellent condition. While it may have acquired a tiny hole from an unfortunate ember encounter, it hasn't affected the chair's integrity. Unlike other chair fabrics prone to worsening holes, the Moonlite's polyester mesh holds up exceptionally well.

Image: Note the one immovable leg support screwed to the joint piece in the photo above; (photo/Mary Murphy)

However, it's worth mentioning that folding and packing the chair back into the carry bag can be a bit challenging. One of the leg poles doesn't fold or budge, which makes it less intuitive to pack away, especially in low-light situations. A simple color-coded dot or strip of tape could solve this issue. Additionally, the chair's bulky poles and feet caps contribute to its snug fit within the bag.

Image: The NEMO Moonlite Chair is heavier and bulkier than others on the market, but is a standard bearer for lightweight comfort on the go; (photo/Chris Peters)

In conclusion, the NEMO Moonlite Reclining Chair has exceeded my expectations in terms of comfort and functionality, despite its slight drawbacks in folding and packing. Its breathability, support, and adjustability make it an excellent choice for both camping and backpacking trips. If you value comfort over weight, this chair is a worthwhile investment. Don't compromise on relaxation during your outdoor adventures - choose the NEMO Moonlite Reclining Chair.

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