Need a Place to Sit as You Wander?

Guest Blog by Tom Graham


Taking a much needed break while out walking.

I recently purchased a PACKSEAT Portable Stool, to help me extend the time I can spend on my feet walking and exploring while traveling. When I go walking, I am limited by the pain in my lower back to how far I can go. Periodically, I just have to find a spot to sit for a few moments, to let the pain recede. I am also a bit out of shape, so the stool offers a great relief, allowing me to sit for a few moments or minutes, to catch my breath and re-charge. Otherwise my enthusiasm for the walk wanes, and the streets of Prague or Venice lose their appeal. Not acceptable!

In looking for a solution, I looked at the canes (or walking sticks as they are being called now) that have a collapsible attached seat. Since I like to take a lot of photos as I wander, I want my hands free, and carrying a walking stick everywhere seemed cumbersome. I think it could be a hassle on a crowded subway or bus as well.

In my research I came across a modern version of a three-legged collapsible stool called the PACKSEAT by GCI Outdoor. It is like the handmade version I had years ago. This slick contemporary version is designed to be very lightweight and compact, so it can be used for backpacking. Total weight is only 26 oz. Now backpack purists may say that is still too heavy, but for my use it is fantastic.

The legs are aluminum, and are connected with shock-cord, like tent poles, so when I take the seat out of the handy carry bag, the legs unfold and pop open. The seat is attached, so the stool sets up in seconds. The legs are long enough that the stool provides a seat at a very comfortable height of 21˝, like a standard chair. The seat area is tiny, but very adequate, and can hold up to 250 lbs.

When it is time to move on, the legs fold in half and slip easily into the carry bag that is only 15˝ long. The bag has a shoulder strap as well as a carabineer to attach it to your day bag or belt. Sweet. Problem solved.






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