October 04, 2022
By Brad Fitzpatrick
As concealed carry has grown more popular in the United States, the market for carry holsters has grown more competitive. With so many holster brands from which to choose, it can be difficult to decide which carry holster is right for you, but one name that is consistently mentioned among the top holster manufacturers in the country is CrossBreed.
Its newest holster system, the Rogue, is designed to offer a wide range of carry options and even includes a detachable magazine carrier. Satisfying the tastes of a broad range of shooters presents its own challenges, though. Past attempts by other holster manufacturers to create a system that meets the needs of every shooter have resulted in needlessly complicated, bulky holster designs.
So, has CrossBreed’s bid to satisfy the full range of shooters succeeded? First, let’s break down the Rogue’s design. It consists of a two-piece holster body and a two-piece magazine carrier, both of which are made from lightweight, durable Kydex. The holster and mag carrier are held together by a pliable polymer bridge that can be removed when the mag carrier is detached.
At the rear of the holster, positioned directly below the grip of the gun, is a polymer “carry claw” that is designed to aid in concealment by pressing the gun against the body to reduce printing. Durable metal clips are included. There’s one on the holster, one on the mag carrier, and an additional clip in the accessories packet included with rig.
Most of the primary components of the holster are held in position by Phillips screws that secure in removable “binding posts” on the opposite side of the holster. Several rubber washers are provided as well. The Rogue system comes in basic black, but there are five hardware color options. As it ships, the Rogue system—including the attached mag carrier and the carry claw—weighs 6.4 ounces. Price is $90. CrossBreed is the leader in offering online video tutorials on using their holsters, and the video operation manual for the Rogue system is comprehensive at more than 20 minutes long. If you watch the tutorial before your holster arrives, you’ll be fully prepared to configure the holster in any fashion you’d like.
Here are the basics. You can remove three screw and binding posts from each side of the “bridge” that connects the holster and magazine carrier to remove the mag carrier. From there you can add the spare metal clip provided in the accessories package to the holster portion to create a sturdy, standalone inside-the-waistband holster. Two pliable bridges are included for attaching the mag carrier to the holster, one of which holds the carrier in a near-vertical position while the other offers forward cant. There are two channels on the holster and two holes in each metal clip that allow you to adjust height and cant of the magazine carrier and holster. The mag carrier doesn’t have a channel, so its ride-height adjustment range isn’t as broad the holster’s.
There are options for a single or a double clip, and if you’d choose to do so you can order outside-the-waistband attachment clips from CrossBreed as well. Retention is adjustable by turning screws on the holster body. For a holster that offers so much the Rogue is unobtrusive. The Kydex shell is light and relatively thin, so it doesn’t add much mass or girth around the waist. Carry claws are a matter of personal opinion and a polarizing subject, so I will only say that the option is there if you want to use it but easily removable if you don’t. The Rogue’s claw design isn’t as outsized as the claws found on some other models.
I suspect most shooters will remove and reposition the mag carrier. From basic handgun courses to competition, the standard is to draw the magazine from the weak side with the weak hand and insert it into the gun. However, I see the practical purpose of having the extra magazine carrier attached to the holster. You can tuck your firearm and ammunition onto one side of your body, and you won’t leave home without a spare mag.
We were in the midst of a heat wave when I received the Rogue, and my standard test for warm weather concealment is to combine the holster with chino-style tactical pants or shorts, a T-shirt and lightweight cover garment. If a holster disappears under that outfit, I can wear it without my firearm being visible in any weather. The Rogue passed this test. I’d rate the Rogue as one of the most comfortable holsters I’ve worn. The flat Kydex back rides close to the body, and the flexible bridge allows the holster system to wrap slightly around the body. There were the usual teething pains associated with any new holster, and these included deciding to keep or remove the carry claw (I ultimately ditched it) and adjusting holster position, ride height and cant.
I settled on a relatively high rise using the two metal clips and used a vertical magazine position. When the holster was settled, it rode comfortably against the hip while carrying a Glock G43X. A high holster backing protects the body from contact with the gun, but the backing also helps protect the gun from contact with the body and the perspiration and moisture associated with our metabolic cycles. There aren’t a lot of contact points between the holster and the body. Even with the mag carrier added the holster’s footprint isn’t excessively large, which keeps the wearer cool.
Detachable Mag Carrier
I debated removing the mag carrier, then changed my mind and came to the realization that, instead of using the attached Rogue carrier for a primary spare magazine, I’d use it for a secondary spare magazine and keep my primary mag on my weak-side hip. That allowed me to comfortably carry and conceal three 10-round magazines. That may seem like a bit much, but if I’m ever embroiled in a life-or-death shootout I don’t want to get knocked out of the fight because I was the first to run out of ammo. Further, having a spare magazine on either side of the body allows me to reload even if I’m trapped in an awkward position. The Rogue’s design offers me a good excuse to carry that extra magazine.
The Kydex shell is designed to fit popular handguns, and there’s an optional light/laser channel. The iron sight channel is tall enough to accommodate most iron sights, even the XS suppressor-height R3Ds on my Glock. Lefties will be glad to hear that there’s a version for southpaws. Crossbreed also offers a long list of clip options for securing the Rogue. Holsters are subjective, so it’s important to evaluate them subjectively. On all the fine points—ease of use, weight, construction, quality of the hardware—the Rogue gets high marks. It’s also proven to me to be one of the most comfortable holsters I’ve tested over the last 12 months. It’s not the only all-purpose holster option available, but it’s certainly raised the bar for its competitors.