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Portability Meets Comfort in the Deer Woods: CRÜZR XC Saddle Review

The CRÜZR XC saddle offers plenty of comfort and adjustability for hunters who spend dozens of days in the trees each fall.

(Photo/Adam Moore)
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Unlike permanent or even hang-on tree stands, tree saddles give you the versatility to hunt almost anywhere you can find a tree. Not to mention, tree saddles weigh a couple of pounds at most. This makes them ideal for long treks in the dark or other situations where weight is at a premium.

Even if you’re hunting the same family farm you have for the past 20 years, a tree saddle can give you the opportunity to adjust from those tried-and-true spots when they inevitably dry up. Sometimes, it pays off to venture away from the lucky tree stand.

The market is ripe with options when it comes to tree saddles, but the lightweight CRÜZR XC is a comfortable, rugged tree saddle that makes it manageable to pull all-day sits whether you’re on a deep piece of public land or the family farm.

Two rows of MOLLE loops give you options for stash bags, carabiners, or other gear, and the adjustable AmSteel-Blue Bridge allows you to customize your setup for comfort and various shooting positions.

In short: The CRÜZR XC’s versatility and comfort should suit both the experienced and the new saddle hunter.

CRÜZR XC Hunting Saddle


  • Single panel
  • Weight rating 300 lbs.
  • Sizes 3 available (28”-42”)
  • Quick-release buckles
  • Adjustable bridge
  • Two rows of MOLLE loops
  • Pleated mesh
  • XC (Xpansion Chamber)
  • Made in U.S.


  • Super comfortable
  • Plenty of adjustability
  • Adjustable bridge holds its position
  • MOLLE loops conveniently placed


  • Price

CRÜZR XC Hunting Saddle Review

CRÜZR XC Saddle Test
(Photo/Adam Moore)

Testing the CRÜZR XC Saddle in the Field

This fall, I spent dozens of hunts in the CRÜZR XC, including some all-day rut sits. While hunting in this saddle, I considered its comfort and adjustability during hunts, as well as wearing it to and from spots. I also considered its price in relation to these criteria.

The CRÜZR XC’s comfort stands out as its most appealing feature, and it’s certainly the most comfortable saddle I’ve used. Its pleated single-panel design, which includes an Xpansion Chamber (XC), contributes to this comfort.

While in the tree, you can sit or lean back in the saddle to adjust the Xpansion Chamber, giving you more surface area and reclining options. How you adjust this will depend on where you place your tree tether. Regardless, it gives you plenty of options. I typically prefer to place my tree tether at or just below chest height, and I didn’t have any issues with the panel bunching or riding up in these positions.

(Photo/Adam Moore)

The AmSteel bridge adjusts easily but maintains a snug fit, which allows you to set it in the most comfortable position or height for your tree tether. The bridge also adjusts easily in the carabiner when you need to adjust for shots, especially when you have deer sneak in behind you. Lineman’s loops on both sides of the saddle also maintained their position instead of sagging while I climbed trees.

(Photo/Adam Moore)

Two rows of MOLLE loops offer plenty of options for placing dump pouches, carabiners, or platform attachments.

Quick-release buckles on the leg straps and the ADF Raptor Buckle on the waist belt allow you to quickly “saddle up” or make comfort adjustments when necessary. While in the tree, I didn’t have any issue with the waist or leg straps straying from their position. They maintained a snug fit throughout my hunts.

Where the CRÜZR XC Saddle Excels

(Photo/Adam Moore)

The adjustable AMSteel bridge sold me on the CRÜZR XC. Not only does this give you plenty of comfort options (depending on how/where you set your tree tether), it’s also secure and doesn’t budge until you need to adjust it. The pleated mesh also contributes to its light weight and breathability, which comes in handy during those warm early-season months.

(Photo/Adam Moore)

For the most part, the CRÜZR XC maintains a snug fit and won’t sag when you add gear pouches, carabiners, or even a platform to the MOLLE loops.

Where the Saddle Can Improve

(Photo/Adam Moore)

The only issue I had with the CRÜZR XC occurred during lengthy walks (treks of at least a half mile). On these walks the leg straps loosened and I had to readjust them a couple of times. This never occurred in the tree stand and isn’t a major issue. Of course, I know a lot of hunters probably won’t cover that much ground, but it’s worth noting.

While the price represents an investment, it’s certainly par for the course. Most hunting saddles range from $200 to $300 (without the ropes), so the CRÜZR XC’s price is fair.

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re looking for an entry into the saddle game or replacing an old one, there’s much to love about the CRÜZR XC. One of the most frequent questions hunters have about saddles revolves around comfort. While I haven’t found a saddle that wasn’t comfortable, the CRÜZR XC excels in this particular area.


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