Review Detail

French Creek Mobility Pending Moderation
(Updated: May 01, 2008)
Overall rating 
Type of Use 
Frequency of Use 
Ease of Use 

French Creek Mobility - Good for awhile, then not

Well you know, you get what you pay for. Usually. I tried this saddle at my dealer and I was impressed by its comfort. It was maybe $200, but regardless of the price I found it to be more comfortable than some saddles twice the price. Also I like the fact that the leg straps have very rugged grommets in them; they're a nice touch if nothing else. It has some nice attachment points. I liked the ring enough that I ordered an additional one for the other side (yeah, there's only one)

I used it regularly for about 6 months, mostly for rec climbing. A lot of Texas-style SRT, split-tail DdRT of course, and also secure foot lock.

But despite the comfort it's got some nagging flaws and I ended up buying another saddle much sooner than expected. The worst thing about the French Creek Mobility is the center bridge strap, the main front strap that holds the single floating ring. It's made of layers of different materials, sewn together - plastic, fabric, and what looks like maybe rubber. This strap deforms after repeated use, and develops a permanent "kink" or loop in the middle where the center ring stays most of the time. It also is cracked pretty badly, and I have never left it out or got it wet other than use in the rain.

During secure footlock or a Texas-style ascent, there are periods of slack on the center ring. Instead of the ring floating back to center when the line gets taut again, it tends to hang up on the side because the shape of the strap is no longer smooth. The strap flops over to one side and the center ring hangs up.

So it really limits how you capture your progress when you are trying to throw your friction knot forward. It resisted me every time.

I bought another "mobility" saddle by Buckingham, and they use an amazing material for their center strap, almost like fabric sealed with resin. It's so durable it has never even changed shape.

I stuffed the French Creek in my truck as a travel "just in case" rig, but I have never used it since.



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