I think both cinch systems have their advantages.
With the two-cinch, you don't have to cinch the front one as tight, and the back cinch has a very slight crupper action to stop forward motion of the saddle.
With the Y-rig, we've got the advantage of being able to move the position of the cinch if needed. This is good for Canelo because he's got what seems to me to be the typical delicate skin that roans have (is this just me? Or is it actually the case?)
Plus, Canelo doesn't really have the belly that I think they need to pull off the two cinch approach - Minina has that nice pony grass belly and it all holds together in the right place. Though I have to say, in the photo above she's pregnant and we didn't know it yet... let's see what her belly's like when she doesn't have a baby in it!
Our pack pads are just a big rectangle of thick wool felt in a removable canvas cover. Actually, it's two bits of felt so there's nothing actually that touches the spine. The pad is cut-out over the withers, and there's leather reinforcement/protection on the corners and on the wither edging. The leather is more to protect the horses' skin against my seaming than it is to protect the canvas...
They have a rectangle of vet-bed under that for sweat-protection. This
photo shows some fabrication going on, or at least shows where it goes on - I think we were mostly on the beer by this point. But in the background you can see the nice red fleecy blanket (courtesy of our flight over
) that became the underside of the canvas cover for Canelo's pad.
For headgear, I'm currently debating this as well, for our trip. Up till now we've used a plain vanilla nylon headcollar. But until now, we've only been working in v quiet places. I am wondering whether, when we start our trip, we might want something with potentially a bit more control, in case a massive earthquake happens while we're crossing a bridge in the middle of a motorcycle parade, that kind of thing
So I was wondering whether to make / get something like the one at the bottom of this page: Pack Saddles & Accessories. Hobbles, Panniers, Top Packs, and More!
- you've got the option of using it like a bog-standard headcollar but if you think the horse might need a bit more reminding, then there are options. Or maybe a rope halter - but I know that Mr-weird-skin-Canelo probably won't do well in that.
Does anyone have any experience with the draw halters?