Picture of Super-easy Paracord Camp Chair

Nature is a wonderful thing. Camping and backpacking are great ways to enjoy the beauty and wonder of the natural world around us, and I highly recommend both of these activities to everyone. There's something refreshing and downright magical about being out in the middle of nowhere, away from computers, cell phones, traffic and other day-to-day distractions.

However, if you're like me, the joy of communing with nature does not extend to sitting in mud or on a big pointy rock or ant-infested log. A comfortable place to sit is a big plus. Here's a trick I picked up while backpacking that allows for a way to relax in comfort without having to lug around a big heavy folding chair.

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Step 1: You Will Need

Picture of You Will Need
  • Paracord
  • A Towel - you did bring a towel, didn't you?*
  • A Knife (or other implement that can cut paracord)
  • A PineconeTM **
  • A relatively horizontal Tree Branch
*A traveller should always know where their towel is
** You really shouldn't need to pack one, but if you don't have one, please PM me and I'll send you your very own for the low low price of $19.95 (S&H additional). Or, I suppose you could use a stick or a rock, or your car keys or something.
Cool. I think I will use a tarp instead. The towel might tear under weight
HelenaTroy1 year ago
really hoopy, frood!
Unicornz1 year ago
That's awesome!!!
TekgodCMS4 years ago
You are one hoopy dude.. I mean, you are a frood who really knows where his towel is. I'll have to add this to my Guide.
Damn! Beat me to it by only 2.5 years... I'd face the Zombie Apocalypse with Douglas Adams and RavingMadStudios anyday.
RavingMadStudios (author)  TekgodCMS4 years ago
Thanks. I also make a mean Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster.
Love the references which I only understood because my Babel Fish was able to translate them. This will come in very handy I'm sure when I'm next out camping/hiking in a woodland area. Thanks :)}
looker19953 years ago
I have sat sideways in a hammock while camping and hiking. Same principle, taking advantage of items you already have with you. This is a great idea- Thanks!
Eromanga4 years ago
Brilliant. Will definitely be trying this on next time I'm out bush.

nerfer1924 years ago
what leatherman is that?
RavingMadStudios (author)  nerfer1924 years ago
It's a Core - basically a newer version of the older SuperTool model (I also have one of those). It's a great tool, and I highly recommend it.
inkerbel4 years ago
Very cool! My kids are going to love this when we go camping. Added bonus: if the kids are old enough to tie the knots themselves, it will give them something to do when they start whining that they're bored!
RavingMadStudios (author)  inkerbel4 years ago
Good luck, and have fun camping! Wish I could go this year....
dopeonarope4 years ago
best knot diagram ever!... that was really easy to understand. thank you
RavingMadStudios (author)  dopeonarope4 years ago
Thanks very much!
Great idea. I made one modification. I didn't like my legs being shoved together by the support ropes so I rolled up a short stick in the bottom edge then tied off the corners with the bend hitch. This kept the ropes from forcing my legs together and made it a little easier to get in and out of. I also hate cutting paracord if I don't have to. So it helps to learn how to tie the hitch so you run the towel corners through the knot. Then you can keep one long piece of para cord for the taller tree down the trail. One safety note, as I found out, make sure your towel has a good, intact seam around the edges. I was doing fine with the old beach towel when the side edge tore. No harm done. This is going with me on my next backpacking trip.
RavingMadStudios (author)  bluelimahorse4 years ago
Excellent idea about the stick. I'm totally trying that next time. Also a good point about not cutting the paracord. I had considered doing it that way, but opted for the easy way out.
psymansays4 years ago
 That chair looks comfy!
RavingMadStudios (author)  psymansays4 years ago
Beats carting a folding chair around, that's for sure.
.  Oh, no! Not the comfy chair!
RavingMadStudios (author)  NachoMahma4 years ago
No one expects the Spanish Inquisition!
You can do the same thing and make a hammock. I have done it with sheets (don't last long) and old blankets (better) and even old curtains (best)
RavingMadStudios (author)  bigtreehouse4 years ago
Curtains is a new one on me, but it does sound like a good idea. May have to try that one. Just don't tell my wife what happened to the drapes.
NachoMahma5 years ago
.  Great job.
.  In windy situations, it might be better to use something a little heavier than an old pinecone to get your rope over the limb. RavingChild looks to be just about the right size. :)
RavingMadStudios (author)  NachoMahma4 years ago
Nah, I haven't been able to chuck him over a tree branch since he turned three. Guess I need to work out more....
Or have another...
RavingMadStudios (author)  ToniRose4 years ago
No thanks, one is plenty....
.  Wouldn't take a million bucks for the one I have. Wouldn't give two cents for another just like her. ;)
RavingMadStudios (author)  NachoMahma4 years ago
Very well put.
l8nite4 years ago
great looking chair and it looks really comfortable as well. Im not sure Id trust my 250lbs to a towel but for the kids it'll work
RavingMadStudios (author)  l8nite4 years ago
Thanks, it is pretty comfortable. I don't know about the upper weight limit. It works OK for my 200 lbs, but I guess it would really depend on the towel and how good your sheet bends are....
paganwonder4 years ago
Agree with Nacho, I usually use the 4 yr old if I can't catch the dog!
RavingMadStudios (author)  paganwonder4 years ago
Hmm... what kind of dog?
Flat Coat Retriever who is none too bright and usually easily lured in by vague promises of snacks!  
RavingMadStudios (author)  paganwonder4 years ago
I think I might have a bit more trouble throwing my Rottie. She might climb the tree herself if there was people food up there, though.
Truehart4 years ago
Wow, in all my years of camping I would have never thought of something like this.  I've used a hammock many a times, but when it came to a chair, either you brought one or you used a cooler/log/bear that happened to be passing through your camp (I wouldn't recommend the last one, bears don't like to be sat upon).  Very nice 'ible.
Also, are you going to enter this in the contest?
RavingMadStudios (author)  Truehart4 years ago
Thanks very much. I like to travel light, gear-wise (more room for beer that way), so this has come in very handy at times. I have entered it in the contest, I'm just waiting for the mods to give their OK.
orisj5 years ago
I love it!
RavingMadStudios (author)  orisj4 years ago
Thanks very much!