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Wherever You Find Fun Outside, Crazy Creek Has Your Back Covered

Red Lodge, Montana-based maker of portable chairs, a favorite of active outdoorspeople in the Rockies, is also devoted to protecting the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem

Crazy Creek has produced the portable camp chairs of choice for 35 years—also great for road trips, outdoor concerts, river floats, or romantic picnics. Photo courtesy Crazy Creek
Crazy Creek has produced the portable camp chairs of choice for 35 years—also great for road trips, outdoor concerts, river floats, or romantic picnics. Photo courtesy Crazy Creek

by Mountain Journal

No matter what route brings you to camp—via mountain hike, paddling a river, attending a summer lawn concert or a performance of Shakespeare in the Parks—nothing feels better than relaxing the body with a good, back-supporting chair. For decades, the favorites of many sojourners in the West have been the portable designs of Greater Yellowstone-based Crazy Creek Products. It's motto: Perfecting "Just Sit There" Since 1987.

In 2022, Crazy Creek turns 35 yet its durable classics never get old or out of fashion. The company is supporting Mountain Journal by generously donating half of the proceeds from its visually fetching, comfortable and highly-affordable special edition chair branded with our MoJo logo. Check it out by clicking here. (Several colors to choose from!).

A short while ago, Mountain Journal had a conversation with Crazy Creek owners Karson Bagby and his brother-in-law Forrest Rogers. Bagby grew up in Billings, was a Silver Run ski member in Red Lodge and spent most of his growing years in the Beartooths and beyond. Rogers says he "is a North Carolina kid who was lucky enough to marry a girl from Montana."

MoJo is proud to be associated with Crazy Creek and whether your savviness convinces you to buy a limited edition chair or not, we encourage you to support this conscientious company with your business. 
The fun-loving owner dudes at Crazy Creek Karson Bagby, at left, and Forrest Rogers. Photo courtesy Crazy Creek
The fun-loving owner dudes at Crazy Creek Karson Bagby, at left, and Forrest Rogers. Photo courtesy Crazy Creek

Mountain Journal: Crazy Creek is a cult favorite portable accoutrement among outdoor people in the Rockies. We've had a couple for several years. What was the genesis of the company and the chair design?

Karson Bagby:  Crazy Creek Products was founded by two people who simply loved to be outside and explore.  As a result the chair was designed to accomplish two things: 1. To allow the founders to be more comfortable while enjoying the outdoors, and 2. to encourage others to get others outside as well.  The company’s genesis continues to be the main part of our mission today.  The chair itself has had several different iterations over the years (i.e. wood planks, circular support stays, multiple pieces of fabric with exposed foam) but much of the original design remains the same.  The evolution in the future will be focused on preserving the unmatched durability while using more modern and sustainable materials.

MoJo: Red Lodge, where Crazy Creek is headquartered, is one of those great small mountain towns off the beaten path of the flow going between Bozeman and Jackson Hole. What do you like about having the company based there and how would you describe the community values? 

Forrest Rogers: Red Lodge is one of those towns, when you’re here you just know you want to be here more.  My wife grew up in nearby Billings and spent her summers and winters in Red Lodge with her family hiking, camping and skiing.  We got married here 17 years ago and spent the last 15 years trying to get here.  We made it here in 2019 and were fortunate in June of 2020 to buy Crazy Creek after a 10 year dream of one day owning it.  Our staff, while small have all been here for over 10 years, our operations manager has been here 19 years, working for all three owners- you don’t keep people that long unless all things are working: good job, good place to live, good schools: over all the ability to be content in this town is really simple.  And if you aren’t happy, look out your window or go for a drive in the Beartooths, unlike anywhere else in Montana—we think at least.

MoJo: By the company's mission, you really do encourage people to get outside, be inspired, reflect on place and be a good steward. Would like to have you riff on this?

Rogers: Being outside is the best way to ground yourself.  There’s nothing more pure than fresh air and sounds of nature.  

Bagby: We strongly believe that the world is a better place when more people spend more time outside, and, consequently we all have a responsibility to ensure that the environment is here to be enjoyed by people for generations to come.
Photo courtesy Crazy Creek
Photo courtesy Crazy Creek

MoJo: What's the most difficult challenge of running an outdoor company in the last couple of years and what are some of the greatest rewards? 

Bagby: Biggest issue overall has been dealing with overseas logistics.  We wish we could make them here in Red Lodge or in the US even, but that ship sailed in 1999 when Crazy Creek went to Asia for production. Freight costs have increased nearly 400 percent since Covid. Luckily we have been smart with our buying and only had to have a minimal price increase for 2022. The benefit can’t be put in words. Being new to the industry but owning a heritage brand has made our interactions with sales reps, dealers, big box stores and more very seamless and we’ve been able to grow the company quickly.  We look forward to greater growth in the outdoor segment worldwide as we (maybe) come out of Covid in the summer of 2022 and beyond.

MoJo: Crazy Creek is teaming with Mountain Journal to raise ecological awareness among the public so that it translates into better safeguarding of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. What do you like about MoJo?

Rogers: Honest reporting of the issues that affect the Greater Yellowstone region and valleys!!!

MoJo: Thanks for believing in us.We believe in you.  If you could leave readers with a few parting thoughts about Greater Yellowstone and what you appreciate most about it, what would it be? 

Bagby: Our region is world famous for a reason—it's spectacular in all forms. From above the tree line to the lakes, the scenery is different and beautiful with every bend of the road, especially our  famous Beartooth Pass!

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