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Inflatable pillow?
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Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
Inflatable pillow? on 11/22/2007 07:00:19 MST Print View

I am a side sleeper and have found that by my becoming lightweight that the clothes pile I used to use as a pillow is not meeting its need anymore by becoming to small to support my head properly. Is there any inflatable pillows out there anyone would suggest that inflate to 4-6" and are pretty lightweight? Thank you.

John Haley
(Quoddy) - F

Locale: New York/Vermont Border
Re: Inflatable pillow? on 11/22/2007 07:07:26 MST Print View

Check out the FlexAir Pillows in the BPL Gear Shop under Sleeping. I've been using the small version and keeping it underinflated.

Large Version:

Steven Evans
(Steve_Evans) - MLife

Locale: Canada
Re: Inflatable Pillow on 11/22/2007 07:30:07 MST Print View

I bought this one a few months back, and it is fantastic. It is very large, and has a dimple in the middle for your head to rest in. If you have a MB pad, the pillow attaches to it and keeps it from scooting out from below your head. The setup really is quite comfortable. I think my pillow comes in at about 2.4 oz.

Michael Davis
(mad777) - F

Locale: South Florida
Re: Inflatable pillow? on 11/22/2007 07:32:59 MST Print View


I love the Montbell. I'm a side sleeper also. It's sized right. It has internal baffles to give it a pillow shape as opposed to baloon shape and it stays under your head at night instead of squirting out.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Mont Bell pillow on 11/22/2007 08:28:02 MST Print View

One of my round-to-it projects is to adapt the Mont Bell pillow to use with other pads using Velcro to attach to my pad or perhaps a fabric "tail" to just tuck under my pad to keep it from getting away in the dark.

One thing for sure-- a pillow made all the difference for me sleeping on the ground. I sleep warm and I don't need a lot of padding other than protection from sharp lumps and cold, but getting my head propped up to the right angle turned my shelter into the Hilton :)

Brett .
(Brett1234) - F

Locale: CA
Inflatable pillow? on 11/22/2007 13:08:11 MST Print View

Brett, another vote for the Montbell. It has toggles you can use to attach to your mattress, or attach as designed to the Montbell mats. It is asymetric. One side has a notch for your head so it will stay centered through the night, as the pillow stays attached to the mat through the night. Expensive but worth it in my mind.

Mark Hurd
(markhurd) - M

Locale: South Texas
Re: Inflatable pillow? on 11/22/2007 13:24:44 MST Print View

Brett P.

I started out with the FlexAir small pillow then switched to the FlexAir Large pillow available here at BPL. I used it for about a year, but then moved to the MontBell like a lot of folks. The FlexAir only weighs 1 oz whereas the MB is about 2.4 oz, but as Brett above and others have noted if you integrate it with an MB sleeping pad it is a great combo. Even if you don't the MB pillow is thicker than than the FlexAir and "sculpted" better to cradle you head than the FlexAir. The FlexAir, however, is cheaper and lighter, and reasonably durable. Can't go wrong with either one.


Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Inflatable Pillows on 11/22/2007 18:39:25 MST Print View

Cheap, light, but just OK comfy - BPL Flex Air pillow (comes in two sizes).

Cheap as heck, not so light (6 oz) but really comfy - REI Entex pillow

Expensive, but very light and comfy - aforementioned MontBell pillow

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
ID on 11/22/2007 18:46:22 MST Print View


Edited by FamilyGuy on 11/08/2013 13:17:08 MST.

David Wills
(willspower3) - F
Re: Inflatable pillow? on 11/22/2007 22:13:32 MST Print View

Im usually a side sleeper and found that a bag or stack of clothes on top of my shoes makes for a good pillow. I prefer a bag though for dirt protection.

Dane Ward
(Tagless) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Mont Bell pillow on 11/23/2007 08:26:25 MST Print View

I would be very interested in hearing more about adopting the MB pillow to other pads. I've been toying with options for doing this as well.

On a side note, I've tried number of lightweight backpack pillows in my quest for a goods night's sleep and like the MB the most. I insert it in a t-shirt as a means of having a pillow cover.

Dondo .

Locale: Colorado Rockies
Re: Re: Mont Bell pillow on 11/23/2007 13:57:25 MST Print View

>>I would be very interested in hearing more about adopting the MB pillow to other pads. I've been toying with options for doing this as well.

It's pretty easy to do. For my closed- cell pads, I just lined up the pillow with the pad and made small slits in the pad which correspond to the toggles on the pillow.

For my Thermarest UL pads, I punched holes in the corners of the pad to fit the toggles. Be careful to not damage the inflatable part of the pad.

Einstein X
(EinsteinX) - F

Locale: The Netherlands
Re: Inflatable pillow? on 11/23/2007 14:15:16 MST Print View


If like many UL hikers you carry two platypusses, you could fill one with water for the night and morning and you could use the other as a pillow.

Just a thought,


douglas girling
(dgirling) - F

Locale: Adirondacks
BPL inflatable on 11/23/2007 14:15:40 MST Print View

I love the BPL inflatables. I use the larger size.
I've sewn a loop of noseeum mesh at the head of my inflatable pad (about 10 inches wide) and big enough to fit the pillow in (and a tshirt if needed) Everything stays in place wonderfully during the night. Very comfortable.

John Kays
(johnk) - M

Locale: SoCal
BPL Inflatable Pillow on 11/23/2007 14:32:12 MST Print View

I too am a side sleeper and have lost my usually head support since migrating to lightweight gear. I used the BPL double inflatable pillow this past summer on my JMT hike and found it to be an aggravation when attempting to pack it up after it’s first use. The main difficulty for me was deflating the pillow in the morning when packing up. Never could get all of the air out and finally split it open with a knife so I could fold it up and insert it into pack. This may be a personal problem peculiar only to me. Also had trouble keeping track of the straw used to inflate and deflate. This pillow otherwise seemed durable and was comfortable during it’s brief, one-night use. Beside comfort, this pillow is attractively priced.

David Lewis
(davidlewis) - MLife

Locale: Nova Scotia, Canada
MEC Down Pillow on 11/24/2007 06:31:03 MST Print View

The MEC makes a nice little down pillow. It's not inflatable... but it compresses very small... and it's very small... so it doesn't weigh much. Mine is packed away right now and the site doesn't list the weight... but I recall it being in the 4 oz range... maybe 5. But it's a REAL pillow. Small... but real. I love mine... tho' I still may buy that Montbell.

Mitchell Keil
(mitchellkeil) - F

Locale: Deep in the OC
Re: Inflatable pillow? on 11/24/2007 15:53:55 MST Print View

I have been using a Cocoon Aircore travel pillow for about 6 months and love it. It is a 13"x17" inflatable pillow surrounded by an envelope of synthetic down. Deflates and packs up at about 4"x5" and weighs about 6 oz. Yes, it is not the lightest solution but when I blow this puppy up and lay my tired head down on it, I really don't care that it is 2 or 3 oz heavier than other pillow choices. I have had the best night's sleep on this pillow that I have ever had in the wilderness. Cocoon also makes an all down and an all primaloft pillow which are lighter and compress a bit more, but they are more expensive.

Brett Peugh
(bpeugh) - F - M

Locale: Midwest
Pillows on 11/24/2007 18:50:01 MST Print View

It seems that the Montbell is out of stock but I don't think it would work that well anyways as I would need more like 6". Home durable are the Flexairs?

Mark Hurd
(markhurd) - M

Locale: South Texas
Re: Durability of FlexAirs on 11/24/2007 21:04:07 MST Print View

I used the same FlexAir pillow for a year (about 30 to 40 nights) and it was still going strong. They are made to be disposable, but are quite tough and if you take care of them they could last several years. You get 3 of them if you buy 'em from BPL. I recommend the large with two tubes- more comfortable.


P.S. Montbell is available HERE

Edited by markhurd on 11/24/2007 21:07:38 MST.

Mike Barney
(eaglemb) - F

Locale: AZ, the Great Southwest!
Re: Re: Durability of FlexAirs on 11/24/2007 22:19:50 MST Print View

I had a similar experience, they seem to last some time (at least weeks) each. I also agree on the double tube vs. the single pillow, much more comfortable and stable.