Trail Ride=new found fear of western saddles

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Trail Ride=new found fear of western saddles

This is a discussion on Trail Ride=new found fear of western saddles within the Trail Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Western trail riding saddles
  • Fear of riding with a saddle

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    06-23-2012, 01:52 PM
Trail Ride=new found fear of western saddles

Last fall I went on a trail ride with a few of my barn members. I rode my fat halfinger pony in a nice western saddle. But this particular day it was muddy because it had rained the day before. Well my pony in scared of the mud. So the saddle was already slipping a little bit because he is fat and the mud didnt help it keep in place at all either. But anyways, we came across a mud puddle that stretched across the trail, so my pony did a 360 degree turn, and the saddle and me slid over his side so I was riding not on his back but on his side, and I couldnt get out of the saddle for a few minutes. Because my feet were stuck in the stirrups.

Ever since then I havent rode in a western saddle, but I have a trail ride coming up and I have to ride in a western saddle, and I am now really nervous and don't want to. And idk what to do.
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    06-23-2012, 02:08 PM
Why do you "have" to ride in a western saddle? I know many people that ride, and are more comfortable in an english saddle on the trail.

Secondly, find a western saddle that fits. While a bit of slippage happens to everyone with a round, low withered horse, you shouldn't be having that much of an issue unless there is some sort of fit problem.

Good luck and try to enjoy your ride!
    06-23-2012, 02:16 PM
Green Broke
Sounds like your problem was a loose cinch. What I do is cinch up my saddle, go do some stuff, come back to check it again then check it a third time prior to mounting. After you've ridden for half an hour or so, jump out and check your saddle again.

I see a lot of people also ride without a breast collar, when trail riding I consider them a must. They help keep your saddle where you put it if properly adjusted.
wild old thing likes this.
    06-23-2012, 02:24 PM
Green Broke
Sounds like your chunk is an air sucker like mine. Right when we begin to tighten the cinch, he'll suck in a bunch of air causing his chest cavity to expand. So when he exhales, it's loose. Double and triple check your cinch before you hop on.
wild old thing likes this.
    06-23-2012, 06:54 PM
I have to ride in a western saddle because at my barn we all share saddles (we are a small private barn) and we are taking a barn trail ride, and we only have two saddles that fit my pony. One english which is being used by NaNa (the lady that owns the barn) on her fat pony and its the only saddle that pony can use. So I am stuck with the western saddle. So I feel like my riding apprehensions are going to make the saddle slipping worse or something
    06-23-2012, 06:57 PM
Green Broke
Try putting on a breast collar if you HAVE to use that saddle it will atleast keep the saddle from going completely sideways a different pad might help as well if its too thick it can add to the slipping.
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    06-23-2012, 06:57 PM
Look kinda like this?
This was me after tacking up Western for the first time lol and my cinch was loose. I now tighten is so hard my horse gives me the stank eye when I do it lol
    06-23-2012, 08:27 PM
It also sounds as if your feet were not in the stirrups properly. The balls of your feet, not your instep, should be in the stirrup. I can think of no reason why your feet would not come out other than user error.

Faulty saddling on your part is not a reason to hate the western saddle. I just completed a 3 hr ride across steep terrain and my saddle never slipped.

After cinching walk your halfie 5 feet and cinch again. Good luck
    06-23-2012, 08:42 PM
Originally Posted by AQHSam    

Faulty saddling on your part is not a reason to hate the western saddle. I just completed a 3 hr ride across steep terrain and my saddle never slipped.
Faulty saddling isn't the reason, that was the cause, it was the slipping and falling that makes her hate the saddle,

You have some great advice, and being the owner of many a fat haffy you have my sympathy. You have been given some great ideas, breast collar is a must, some sort of thin sticky pad under the saddle, fleece pads and fleece cinches seem to slip far easier I think, so leather, neoprene or mohair cinches are my favorite.

As other have also said, cinch, wait, tighten wait and walk and tighten again.
wild old thing likes this.
    06-23-2012, 08:49 PM
Were you wearing boots?

You might check the size of your stirrups. I know there are stirrups big enough that I could get my foot thru if I didn't have a heel. I use an Aussie-style saddle with English stirrups that my feet can't get thru unless I'm just in socks - and I don't ride in socks!

I won't ride any more unless my boot has at least a 1" heel. That is part of what I consider minimal safety equipment for my kids & I.

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