I prefer leather, just because it would probably last longer. Synthetics are lighter and easier to clean as stated. But I have heard that some wintec saddles weren't very good because the tree broke easily? Or something broke? Not sure if that is true or not. I have a 2 western saddles, a wintec synthetic as well as a Longhorn leather. I like the leather on better, although it is heavier.
I really like the English Wintecs. I'm lazy and I don't want to put it time or effort cleaning etc a leather saddle. The wintecs I've ridden in just needed wiped off at the end. I also like the price tag ;) I found them more comfortable than leather but I can't quite put my finger on why.
I did not care for the synthetic western saddle I rode in although I did like how lightweight it was. I don't show or anything. If I did I might look into a more expensive leather saddle...maybe. Posted via Mobile Device
So, it sounds like synthetic for schooling and leather for the big upper-level shows... I like the sound and look of leather, but I like the comfort of synthetics better. I guess it depends on the saddle and the discipline it is for... I'll just have to try a few! Thanks for all the tips!
I have both. I usually end up using my Abetta (synthetic) saddle for barrel racing because it is more comfortable and easier to clean than my leather barrel saddle. It holds up to my rough ole riding, and it only cost me $300.
There are advantages to both, synthetic is light weight, easy to clean and great to use when riding in the rain. Leather will last your lifetime if you care for it and its quality made. I use synthetic because I live in a climate that's wet almost year round, Wintec makes some beautiful synthetic saddles that are hard to tell the difference until you are close up and they are well built saddles.