Help me find a new trail saddle, what do you prefer? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 26 Old 01-18-2012, 02:48 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
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Help me find a new trail saddle, what do you prefer?

Hi guys!
I'm posting this here hoping to get more trail wise feedback but mods you can move it if need be! Thanks in advance for any help!
So, I'm shopping for a new trail saddle for Rick. I currently have a Big Horn trail saddle that I love, but it's just not working for him. (7in. FQHB) It's been slipping forward on his shoulders and while I can't find any indication of rubbing or pain it's not ideal. His back is always evenly wet, so no rubbing or gaping issues, just the sliding forward. Fits well over his withers, 3-4 inch gap before pad.

Here are a couple photos of him in various positions. The first ones are about the condition he is in now after three hard months of training, the last is a photo of him in pasture chub, he's about between these now. I like a bit of fluff! I think he has decent conformation, pretty balanced little guy. My problem fitting him is he has a bit of a long shoulder, it comes way back and up. Much more so than with my full blooded QH's. I'm pretty good at fitting and I've been searching all the vids (especially on here) looking for these specific fitting problems but being a ?????grade????? his angles are throwing me off. Getting him pro fitted isn't an option right now, just needing a few suggestions or thoughts.

These three were all taken the same day, I took unflattering ones to get shots of his angles. In the last one you can tell he isn't missing too many groceries! Below is him in normal chubby condition.

You can see in this shot I got from the girl riding him how far his shoulder reaches back when extended.

I'm not ready quite yet after Christmas to drop a bunch on a new saddle and I'm even considering purchasing a used one. Anyone have the same fit problems? Slipping forward on the shoulders? What brand do you recommend/use/love. I'd like to stay with a nice nylon trail or endurance saddle. We cross too much water and I'd rather ride than spend too much time taking really good care of a leather one! :roll: But any suggestions would be helpful!

Anyone like/have one of these? Old Time Trail Rider Round Skirt Saddle, King Series It's not nylon but I love the way it looks, doesn't look like the best fit for my guy though... but it's hard to tell from the saddle angle.

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post #2 of 26 Old 01-18-2012, 03:16 PM
Join Date: Jan 2012
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Have you looked at these?

Tucker Saddles - Trail saddles and Bridle Supplies.
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post #3 of 26 Old 01-18-2012, 04:02 PM
Green Broke
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^^^^^^Love my Tucker saddle, and so do the horses. Measurements were taken of each horse and pictures and sent to the company. Fits wonderfully for us both.
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post #4 of 26 Old 01-18-2012, 06:20 PM
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I love my Allegany Mountain Trail Saddle. They send out forms to help you fit your horse and then make a saddle that fits. Stacy also has some ready to go saddles.

My saddle had a super duper seat in it and it very nice. Has Horse Shoe stainless steel hardware. All for around $1100. Mine was the Renegade Endurance Saddle.

You can contact Stacy at Trail Riding Saddles Allegany Mountain Western Saddle

She is wonderful to work with.
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post #5 of 26 Old 01-19-2012, 06:46 AM
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If you wanted leather, I would give you some suggestions but since you want a synthetic, the only one I recommend is the Fabtron. It runs ~$550 - $650 new but it is a really nice saddle for the money. Top quality saddle considering it's synthetic.
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post #6 of 26 Old 01-19-2012, 07:34 AM
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I love my Tucker saddle because we ride all day sometimes and it makes a real difference to me.
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post #7 of 26 Old 01-19-2012, 09:02 AM
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Crates and Tucker's are nice. I can't help you with synthetic ones. I've gotten my saddles wet on many occasions and they are fine, just keep them oiled. Ray Holes saddle butter works extremely well!
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post #8 of 26 Old 01-19-2012, 09:30 AM
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These might be an option for you: Duett Saddles: The Partnership of Horse & Rider

They have a generous trial policy.

I've ridden in one of their dressage models and they are incredibly comfortable.
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post #9 of 26 Old 01-19-2012, 10:35 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Sep 2011
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Thanks guys,
I'm pouring over all the ideas! I don't mind leather, I have always had leather saddles until I got this 1/2 synthetic one. It really is much quieter and so much lighter, but I'm looking for comfort with him. I'm 5'2 ish and 140lbs., he's only 14.2hh and around 900lbs. so I want to shave as many pounds as possible!

Thanks for the tip goneriding, I'll try the saddle butter out on a couple here that needs some TLC!

You can get a lot further with a ladder than you can with crutches!!
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post #10 of 26 Old 01-19-2012, 12:19 PM
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The more I think about it, the more I think a Duett (if it fits) will help fix both your problems (weight and shoulder interference).

A leather english saddle will be lighter (by a bunch) than a leather western saddle, and possibly lighter than a synthetic western saddle.

The flap on an english saddle doesn't go much further forward on the flank than your knee, so it's much more likely to not get in the way of your horse's shoulder motion.

Another option to consider is a straight dressage saddle. Their flap goes straight down which would also help. Wintec makes some that are all covered in their synthetic suede and so they tend to hold you in very well. You would need to have a saddler add D rings all over it though.
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