I have spent the last year looking for a saddle that fits both Nibbles and me. I just wanted a nice older leather trail saddle that was nice looking, well made, and that had a rounded skirt and was light weight enough for me to put on my 15.2 and growing barely 3 year old filly. The first one I tried was an endurance saddle that fit me well, but didn't fit her. The second one made me feel like I was going to slide off everytime she moved, and the third I loved, but pinched her shoulders, etc, etc, etc. My husband was ready to shoot me becasue I had tried so many and he thought I was just being too picky. But I wanted a saddle that made me happy when I looked at it and when I rode in it, and fit Nibbles well. I knew I hadn't found it, because evey time I brought a saddle home, I'd immediately look on e-bay or Craigslist to see what else was available. Anyway, the other day when I was bringing another saddle back to the local tack shop, there it was! Of course, it doesn't have a round skirt, and it's heavier than I wanted, but it is SOOOOO comfy, and gives me a very secure seat. AND it seems to fit Nibbles just fine (Keeping my fingers crossed!) ANyway, I just had to share. Anyone who has had a hard time finding "THE" saddle will forgive my excitement! LOL
It's made by VH saddlery. Don't know their reputation, but it's very well made and has very good leather and doesn't slip or move at all when we go up or down steep slopes. It's an older Wade style saddle. Also, to answer the post saying it will make her withers sore??????? There is about 4 inches of clearance at her withers, and it doesn't touch her spine at all. Have a question for all of you experts out there, though (I know english saddles, not western). The saddle is fairly heavy. Should I use a heavy pad? Right now I am using a Diamond felt pad about 3/4 inch thick.
I have used Diamond pads like you're using for years. I love them, I think it is just fine. If you ever want to invest in a more expensive pad every one seems to love the 5 Star pads. I haven't sucked it up and spent the money yet.
And the clearance between the fork and withers is good.
P.S. Just have to say, your filly is pretty fancy :)