I FINALLY GOT A SADDLE!!!
First of all, thank you PH :) You really have no idea what this means to me.
A few of you are familiar with my soreness issues. After completing our first 50 (for a total of 125 miles last hear with LD's and the 50), Snickers came up SORE. And showed signs of grey hairs coming in on his shoulders. My heart sank - both because he hurt so bad and because I didn't know what I was going to do since I probably wasn't going to be able to afford a saddle. That was last July. After that, per the ride vet's recommendation, he had 6 weeks with no riding, a few tune-up rides, and did superbly in an LD 2 months later in a borrowed saddle that I believed fit. However, he almost hit the ground when we checked his back. He's such a trooper - he didn't show any signs of being uncomfortable or being upset until the vet check.
That was the end of our endurance season. I gave him 3 months of with basically no riding (I did jump on bareback for 5 minutes a few times in the second half of that time). And of course, since then, it's been very cold and wintery and I've been beating myself up trying to figure out this saddle issue. No matter what I did, I just didn't see a way to compete this season the way I wanted to. The saddles I did think would work were far out of my budget and we're currently trying to get money back in the bank since I've been student teaching and haven't had any income. My poor husband, who doesn't ride and is actually afraid of horses, has been SO supportive through it all, trying to make sure we had money for me to pay for my horses (I have two) and then compete on top of that. It's hard to explain to a non-horse person why one must have a saddle in the neighborhood of $1,500, and when it comes down to it, our family needs to come first.
The other day, I was talking to one of my friends, an expert in the field of endurance, and she said she uses Big Horns. She loves them and they fit most horses she's worked with, so I'm really hoping it fits mine. I knew those were less expensive, and after calling the company, I figured out which model I liked (of course it's the same one as my friend has). Then, I posted the thread about Big Horns, and moments realized later that this was the exact saddle PH was selling! And then my husband said he'd be ok with the price! Now, it's paid for and I'm trying so hard not to just explode while I'm waiting for it! I'm crossing my fingers and hoping that this is the end of my saddle woes and that I'll finally get to ride without stressing that I'm hurting my horse - lately, I've been limited to only very occasional rides and keeping them to less than a half hour and not really working, but rather just going for a quick trot/walk in the arena so as not to injure him. With a fitting saddle, I can actually do what I love again!
I cannot wait to hear all about your adventures. Nothing is as frustrating as the saddle game. Hopefully this is the end of it for you!!
You had better spam us with pictures when you get it!! :D:D
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glad for you I am still looking, still riding in my beater Aussies, cant find anything better,
Circle Y marathon gaited fit my horse but painful for me, returned,
Crestridge, fit me but terrible fit for horse, returned,
Abetta endurance I got cheap to try was too wide, still have it in case I get a Arabian and wanna try it.
Sat in a Gen 2 Tucker, and I leked the fit, but unsure of tree fit, I heard they run narrow, nearby store only has a regular and wants to order everything at full retail, can get a wide online for a good deal but tired of paying restocking fees,
I sat in a Circle Y, cant remember but was basically a non gaited version of the Alabama trail gaiter, I liked the seat but store didnt have a gaited tree for me to try.
So lets see in the running,
Gen 2 tucker endurance, like seat, unsure of tree,
Circle Y, Alabama trail gaiter, unsure of seat and tree,
Downunder Longreach, will fit me and the horse, price is right, justt dont like dressage rigging.
Under normal conditions, I would have set the saddle on my horse and tested it for fit before I bought it. However, this exact saddle came highly recommended, so I'm going to take the risk. Have you tried Specialized? That was my other option, but I don't have the money for one. You can find a lot of used ones on endurance.net - everyone I know LOVES theirs.
Even though this one has semi-quarter horse bars, typically too small for Arabians, my friend said they've fit most of her Arabians because of the way it sits. Occasionally, a horse can be too round in her experience, but that's all.
Yay! Pictures please!!! This is my endurance saddle...
What kind is it?
Its a circle y flex 2 I bought used as a second saddle and love it. I am not even sure of the style. I need to maybe look closer at the plate on it. I actually use it more than my circle y that I bought brand new.
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