Wanted to talk Klymit pillows for a couple of minutes, with a primary focus on the newly introduced “Pillow Ultra Light” – a collaborative pillow with Massdrop and Klymit.
At the moment Klymit has three pillows on the market:
- Pillow X
- Cush Seat
- Pillow Ultra Light
I have used all three of these and as one would expect, they each have their highlights.
When it comes to pillows, everybody on this planet has their own preferences, and I seriously envy folks that can sleep without a pillow. I wish I could. I am getting close, but I am not there yet. At home I use to have 6 to 8 pillows all stacked up on top of each other, and now I have one tiny pillow about 4 or 5 inches in height on my bed.
At one point, back in December of 2013, I spent a bit over $100 bucks on a hiking pillow setup – it was Chad ‘Stick’ Poindexter’s fault, lol – and I ended up selling it to Matthew Xavier Lucero in August of 2014, so it did not even make it an entire year… I remember using it very little.
Along the way there have been many others that I have used, including a very special made ‘Klymit V Pillow‘, but without a doubt the pillow that has been with me the long is the ‘Pillow X‘ from Klymit.
Than something horrible happened.
Massdrop worked with Klymit to introduce the “Pillow Ultra Light“, an even lighter version of the Pillow-X. Noooo!!!! That could only mean one thing… my longest used pillow was about to get left behind.
Pillow Ultra Light Specs:
So the new Pillow Ultra Light hits my scale at 55 grams (1.94 oz) with the stuff sack – which on my scale is 5 grams (0.17 oz), so it makes the weight of just the pillow to be 50 grams (1.76 oz) which is about the weight of one mouthful of water I would guess.
The dimensions of the Pillow Ultra Light are the same as the Pillow X, at 15″ width, 11″ deep, 4″ height.
What makes the Pillow Ultra Light different from the Pillow X is the use of lighter weight fabric, a 20d fabric on top and bottom, instead of a 30d top / 75d bottom on the Klymit Pillow X.
Like the Pillow X the Pillow UL only takes two breaths, for me, to fully inflate.
Like with the Pillow X the Pillow UL ends up getting stuffed into my pack sans stuff sack.
One of the nice things about the Pillow X is the 75d fabric on the bottom. I truly cannot count how many times I have used it right on the ground as a sit-pad. I know the Therm-a-rest Z Seat is a crazy popular long distance hiker sit pad, and for good reason, it packs down small, gives you protection from stickers and rocks and wet sand. I would challenge Z Seat users that the Klymit Pillow X is just as good – and in some ways better: it packs down significantly smaller and is an air-cushion sit pad. It cannot handle stickers/cactus obviously as well, but that is about the only negative aspects of the Pillow X as a sit pad. Being made of 20d fabric on the bottom, I am not too sure using the Pillow UL as a sit pad is probably the best idea.
I have also used both the Pillow X the Pillow UL as a knee pillow. There are times when at night, usually have a long day of trail running, when my knees badly need some padding, and the X shape of the pillow really helps the pillow stay in place and not cause my knees to hit each other.
I have also used the pillow, inflated about half to three-quarter of the way, so that it bends/conforms to my back, as a quasi internal frame support inside super ultralight backpacks on those sections where I have a few days worth of food and any extra bit of support is just nice to have.
I do want to briefly talk about the Klymit ‘Cush Seat‘, which as much as it is called a ‘seat’, is one of the most ideal side sleeper pillows I have encountered.
This little seat (just going to call it a pillow from here out) has the ability to fold up into a bunch of different heights. This allows you to have, an albeit narrow pillow, but a pillow that can be significantly higher than any other pillow out there that I have used.
As a side sleeper, and 41% of people on the planet are side/fetal sleepers, having a high pillow means you can have your head even with your shoulder gap/height. The Cush Pillow is the best solution to this, that I have been able to find.
At 82 grams (2.89oz) and about $13 bucks directly from Klymit, and at the time of writing this, $12 bucks over at amazon.com, this is probably the least expensive and most useful side-sleeper pillow I have used.
For many years I have been hoping that Klymit would introduce sleeping pads with lighter weight fabric. Thanks to the Massdrop x Klymit collaboration we now have the Massdrop x Klymit ‘Static V Ultra Light’ Sleeping Pad, and now with the Massdrop x Klymit ‘Pillow Ultra Light’ we have a matching pillow to go along with it – or all by itself!
With the exception of directly-on-the-ground durability, the new Pillow UL is just the way to go – at just 50 gram, and under $18 dollars shipped, is pretty much a no brainer. Order it up, along with the Cush Pillow and all your pillow problems should be solved!