This is the ultimate TopNotch Crazy Creek Original Chair Review 2021….
Elevate your comfort level at your next sporting events and camping trips with this classic, simple chair.
We brought the Original chair with us on our Montana testing trip, along with the 10 other chairs featured in our 10 Best Backpacking Chairs Review. We carefully reviewed the details, benefits, and shortcomings of the Original and will be sharing them here.
In this comprehensive review we’ll cover:
- The main benefits of this camping stool such as comfort, weight, and durability
- Side by side comparisons with 9 other best camping chairs on the market
- Some downfalls of the Original stool
- Lots more…
So if you want to find an affordable, comfortable, lightweight folding chair, you’ll love this guide.
Let’s get started…
- Less lightweight than the PowerLounger
- Not breathable
- Too stiff to roll up
Our Verdict: Crazy Creek Original Chair
As one of my first “backpacking chairs,” before I even knew that term, I can say that the Original is a tried and true folding chair.
It was my first backpacking trip in Colorado and I remember thinking how innovative it was.
First of all, the set up is incredibly simple. You just unbuckle the straps and unroll the seat.
It’s also versatile for any climate: when I used it there were snow patches on the ground but the 0.5 inches of closed-cell foam keeps you snug.
Your body weight will feel supported, no matter your size, by the carbon fiber stays which line the sides of the camp stool.
Creek products are known for the versatility and lightweight features they offer. Another favorite of our team is the Power Lounger which we used as a sleeping pad on our Montana test trip.
All in all, we like the simple Crazy Creek chair but do acknowledge its shortfalls.
Let’s dive into it.
Related: 10 Best Backpacking Chairs
Our Analysis Comparisons and Test Results
While our team didn’t give it any special awards we still included it in our Top Ten Chairs.
Want to know why?
Well, because it’s a classic model that holds up through the years and various outdoor occasions.
We appreciate the easy-to-adjust side straps as well as the dense EVA foam which gave us some cushioning.
Plus, it’s affordable and comes in a wide variety of colors. Whichever way you look at it it’s going to be a nice introductory camp stool or one to add to your collection!
Value For Money
If you want a portable stool that will last years, we’d strongly recommend this one.
However, if you want more bang for your buck, we say try out our Best Value ALPS Mountaineering Weekender, a comfortable and economical chair.
While we enjoy the simple, sturdy design of the Original, its price tag doesn’t compensate for the lack of comfort.
Value For Money Rating
The carbon stays aren’t too comfortable if you press onto them, and the stool is quite small for heavier users.
If weight is a concern, there are similarly priced stools with higher capacities like the Travel Joey.
That being said, this little stool is quite durable. Rocky or uneven surfaces won’t damage its dense foam interior and ripstop nylon exterior.
On our Montana testing trip, some of our team members complained that the stool hit them in a weird place on their back.
They prefer a higher stool, such as the Travechair Joey which gives more space and comfort to the back and shoulders.
On the other hand, the adjustable side straps do offer easy fine-tuning to fit your size.
Also, you’ll have no problems leaning back comfortably as the weight capacity on the chair is 250 pounds.
One of the main advantages of the Original is its very low weight.
Weighing just 26 ounces, it’s a very small and portable chair.
Here’s the deal though:
When we were packing up the campsite in Montana, I had a hard time getting the Original to fold up nicely.
Packed Size Rating
The main issue is the valves end up on the inside of the folded chair. You have to carefully position your fingers to get it to roll up properly – it can be frustrating…
We prefer the Helinox Chair Zero which fits nicely in its packing bag. This stool is just a bit too big for its bag.
You may just end up just using a strap -like we did.
People have been using the Crazy Creek Chair since the 1990s. It’s one of the oldest and most popular brands of camping gear – because their equipment lasts.
The original chair is no exception.
The durable ripstop nylon is not only easy to clean but also water-resistant. Even in mud, wind, and rain, we feel confident this chair will last season after season.
Though it doesn’t have reinforced 210 denier ripstop nylon on the outer surface like the Crazy Creek 2.0, it’s still a long time favorite for many of our team members.
One of the main features of the stool is that it can double as a sleeping mat. While some people sing the praises of this versatility, others aren’t too impressed.
This is mainly because the chair is too small and short to offer a sleeping pad with any degree of comfort.
For a more realistic chair that doubles as a sleeping mat, check out the Crazy Creek PowerLounger.
On the bright side:
You can bring this chair to the beach, inside your boat fishing, or even on the bleachers at a sporting event. Any dirt or debris cleans easily off of the foam and nylon material.
Conclusion: Crazy Creek Original Chair
…you’ll know all about the features, benefits, shortfalls of this classic backpacking stool.
If weight is a factor on your trip, you won’t be burdened with the tiny 26-ounce weight of this stool.
If you want a chair that will last through years of sporting events, camping trips, and backpacking adventures, this one is a great choice.
Keep in mind: when reviewing the top 10 chairs on the market for 2021, our team members found other chairs like the Trekology chair more comfortable, so we awarded it our TopNotch ‘Editor’s Choice’.
We also awarded the ALPS Mountaineering ‘Best Value’, and the Crazy Creek PowerLounger was our ‘Top Pick’.
We hope our guide helps you make a more informed decision on your camping stool purchase.
Please click the links to view the latest prices and offers of the backpacking stools mentioned in this review.
Other Versions: Crazy Creek Chair
While our team used this Crazy Creek chair, there is also the Crazy Creek Chair (Hex 2.0) PowerLounger and the Longback.
The main difference between the three sizes are as follows:
- Dimensions: 37.5 inches x 17.5 inches
- Weight: 24.8 oz.
- Chair Height: 21 inches
- Dimensions: 53.5 inches x 17.5 inches
- Weight: 32 oz.
- Chair Height: 21 inches
- Dimensions: 33 inches x 15.5 inches
- Weight: 21.9 oz.
- Chair Height: 16.5 inches
As you can see from these dimensions, the original features the smallest Packed Size. However, the Power Lounger is a better choice for those who want a bigger sleeping mat.