Here you have my selection of ultralight backpacking cots that are light and compact enough to be carried on the trail. All of them have been on the market for a number of years already.

Are backpacking cots worth it?

Even the lightest existing cots on the market weigh around 1.2 kg. They can be very compact, you will see the numbers below. So when exactly it would be worth carrying one?

In warm weather situations, when you have a cot you can manage without a sleeping pad. So the packed size is partly compensated. As for the weight, warm weather camping pads are far lighter than any of the cots here. This means with a cot you definitely have more bulk and weight in the pack.

But imagine that this is a warm yet wet environment. You can set such a cot literally in the water and mud, and you can still remain dry and safe. Sleeping off-ground has obvious advantages in such conditions.

In most cases, it is more comfortable on the cot than on the ground. You are also a bit less exposed to crawling insects. So these are some of the reasons for having a cot.

My list of lightweight backpacking cots

The cots are ordered by the weight from lighter to heavier:


You will realize that the weight differences are minimal, and the same holds for their packed size. But there are huge differences in prices.

I hope you will love the products I present below, I choose only the best that is on the market, those that I can fully recommend, and present them here in the site. Just a heads up that as an associate of Amazon and other sellers, I may earn some commission from qualifying purchases of products bought via links on this page, at no additional cost for you.

1. Therm-a-Rest UltraLite Cot

Therm-a-Rest UltraLite Cot.
Therm-a-Rest UltraLite Cot.

This is one of the best known and the lightest camping cots on the market. It has been around for some time already and this is a modifed version of their another famous cot. Note that they build it in two sizes, regular and large. The regular version weighs only 2.6 pounds (1.18 kg).

But note also that it is quite short, the dimensions are 72 x 24 x 4.5 inches (183 x 61 x 11.4 cm). As you see, it is incredibly low as well, so it can fit in any tent, no matter how small it can be.

Regarding the weight, it can be reduced even more if you are a light person. From the picture you realize it has 6 legs on each side and they are connected with bow poles. So you can omit one of them and perhaps even two.

This is an award-winning design and the cot is very popular in spite of its steep price. It comes with what they call ThermaCapture, and this means a reflective coating layer on the underside. This helps retaining your body’s radiant heat.

Making it ready needs some work because it has many parts. These include 2 shock-corded side poles, 12 feet, and 16 yellow and green short bow poles, the fabric, and a carry bag.

The packed size is (L x D) 16 x 4 inches (43 x 10 cm).  The weight capacity of this cot is impressive 325 lb (147 kg). Please see more in this video:

What I like:

  • The weight.
  • Craftsmanship.
  • The packed size.

What I dislike:

  • The price.
  • The length.
  • Complicated setup.

2. Helinox Lite Cot

Helinox Lite Cot.
Helinox Lite Cot.

This cot is only slightly heavier than the previous one. It weighs 2 lb 13 oz (1.28 kg). It is also a bit bulkier when packed, the packed size is 21 x 5 x 5 inches (53 x 13 x 13 cm).

To continue with numbers, the capacity of this cot is 265 lb (120 kg), and the dimensions are 73 x 23.5 x 5 inches (185 x 60 x 13 cm). As you realize, this is again a very low cot and it can fit in any tent. There are no end bars here, so this length is a true length that you can use.

There are four legs, they are shock-corded and they attach to the side poles easily. So although this is again a collapsible cot that needs assembly, this is really easily done in a couple of minutes.

There are feet on each side and in between you can see those bars. So the cot can be used without any issues with tent’s floor. The metal part here are all made of an advanced DAC aluminum alloy. The fabric is a weather and UV resistant 600-weave ripstop polyester.

You will want to know that this cot comes with an incredible 5-year warranty. Please see more in this video:


What I like:

  • The weight.
  • The packed size.
  • Ease of use.
  • Warranty.

What I dislike:

  • The price.
  • The length.

3. YaeKoo Folding Camping Cot for Adults

YaeKoo Folding Camping Cot for Adults.
YaeKoo Folding Camping Cot for Adults.

This is a cot with a bow frame design, so it is similar to the Therm-a-Rest cot. This means that assembly needs time. It weighs 2.87 lb (1.3 kg) so it deserves to be included here. The packed shape is shown in the picture and the dimensions in the carry bag are impressive (L x D) 15.7 x 4.7 inches (40 x 12 cm).

The bed dimensions are 70.9 x 22.8 x 3.9 inches (180 x 58 x 10 cm), so it is the smallest and the lowest here in the group. Note that its official capacity is quite modest 209 lb (95 kg). So this is not for tall and very heavy users.

The materials include aviation-grade aluminum alloy poles, two on the sides and 8 underneath the bed, the fabric is an anti-tear PV oxford, and the 12 circular legs are nylon.

What I like:

  • Incredible price.
  • Great packed size.
  • The weight.

What I dislike:

  • Complaints about durability.
  • Complicated setup.
  • Small bed size.
  • Modest capacity.

Final thoughts

So this was my selection of best ultralight backpacking cots, and you will not find lighter on the market. All of them are very compact as well. Bear in mind the bed dimensions, this in particular if you are a tall person. Note that some of them are available also in large version, but this also implies more weight.

Editor’s Choice 

The cot below is my choice because of its high quality, features, and its warranty conditions that are hard to match. It is also considerably easier to use than the other two cots in the list.

Top quality ultralight cot and excellent warranty
Helinox Lite Cot.

Product Name: Helinox Lite Cot

Product Description: This is a high quality cot, appreciated by everybody, and for all the good reasons.

Brand: Helinox


  • Features - 9.2/10
  • Design - 9.4/10
  • Quality & craftsmanship - 9.8/10
User Review
8.55/10 (2 votes)

There are more texts about cots here in the site so have a look if you want something different.

Let me know if you have questions, there is a comment box below. Thank you for reading and have a nice day.

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