Cushy comfort and modest packability make this a solid…
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $39
Cushy comfort and modest packability make this a solid purchase for car camping. It's a bit too bulky for backpacking.
- Easy to pack up
- Larger than most camp pillows
- The memory foam gets chilly where it's not in contact with warm skin
- The large size that makes it comfortable also makes it kind of bulky
My wife and I rode through in Steamboat Springs, CO, on our recent moto/camping vacation, mainly so we could go to the BAP store. They're the "factory" outlet for Big Agnes, Honey Stinger, and a few other outdoor gear manufacturers who are based in Steamboat.
Full disclosure here: One of my customers is a beekeeper who is a partner in Big Agnes and Honey Stinger. He's been a great guy to deal with over the years, has given me a ton of work, and always has some HS swag around. :)
We browsed the store, picked out some of the HS stuff, and I spotted the Sleeping Giant pillow over in a corner. We'd been on the road for about 10 days at this point, and the two smaller pillows that I usually carry on trips (an Exped Air Pillow—excellent!, and an El Cheapo vinyl pillow that I bought at REI years ago) were doing a decent job of keeping me comfortable, but the BA piqued my interest.
My wife purchased a Thermarest Compressible Pillow in the spring, and I've actually seen her smiling in her sleep because of it. Being the rough, tumble man I am, I wanted no part of a pillow that was so big. So big and so cushy. And comfy. The Giant Memory Foam Pillow packed down to about half the packed size of hers, and looked to be almost as luxurious when opened up and inflated. I took the bait and bought the thing.
My first night using the pillow was at 8K feet at Timber Creek CG in Rocky Mountain NP. One of my few gripes with my old pillow setup was that it was relatively small compared to my condo-sized head, and I tended to lose either one or the other of the pillows as I turned over in my sleep. The BA pillow is generous in size, being 16" x 12". No more sliding off!
The memory foam allows the head to be cradled in rather than the normal sitting on top of a regular air bladder pillow. Nice! The cover is lightly textured, which also helps thing stay in place, and there is a standard inflatable pillow under the memory foam that gives the whole show about 3.5"-4" of loft, depending on firmness of inflation. I slept like the dead the first night!
My one and only gripe with the pillow concerns the fact that the memory foam, while cushy, gets cold if you're not laying directly on it. It's a minor gripe that I discovered when I got up to take a leak in the middle of the night. I plan to us a flannel pillowcase of some sort on our next trip, which should solve the problem. Otherwise, I really like this thing.
The pillow comes with a zippered stuff sack, and I had no issues getting it packed up and stuffed in my duffel bag.
As with all of Big Agnes' products that I've used, it's well-made, and I expect to get many years of happy slumber as a result. You cannot put a price on a good night's sleep, and the Big Agnes Sleeping Giant Memory Foam Pillow is a great investment towards getting it.