According to this website: Clearance Kimberley Aussie Horse Saddles, Trail Saddles, Endurance Saddles (I'm considering the first saddle listed there, I also like the 4th saddle down even better but I don't really think I can convince even a sucker to pay $499 for my current saddle) the saddle I'm looking at is excellent for wide horses and they do the whole wither tracing etc thing which I think would be great considering Lacey's issues with saddles fitting her. They also offer one free tree adjustment of the saddle in the first year you own it which would also be great since Lacey is currently building muscle like no other. And the price, $249, is not bad at all!
The only reason I'm really considering going Aussie is that Lacey is so darn wide that it's been pretty much determined that unless I get a flex tree western saddle, I'm not going to have an easy time finding a good fit for her. The trails I ride are so intense that I don't really feel comfortable with the idea of riding them in an english saddle, not withstanding the fact that she's been too wide for every english saddle I've ever ridden her in (3, but they were all medium wide or something) so I feel like finding a used english saddle that's wide enough will be a challenge and a half.
Only problem: I've never seen an Australian saddle in real life/ridden in one ever. I loved riding english before Lacey came along but I like the extra security of western so I figure that an Aussie saddle might work for us but I'm not sure.
So I guess my basic questions are:
- What are the main differences when riding between western/english and Australian? I'll just be using it for trails.
- Do you need a special saddle pad? Or is an english pad just fine?
- Do they fit the horse differently than an english saddle does? How so?
- I read on that website that they are situated farther forward on a horse than either a western or an english saddle? True?