Monday, January 10, 2011

Searching for a saddle

Arabians are gorgeous, sweet, smart, sometimes mischevious and just generally really awesome animals. They are not, however, easy to buy tack for.

I've been riding for 20-some odd years now. I have lots of tack. A few bridles, a couple of saddles, saddle pads, a saddle stand, all the grooming tools, longing equipment and a few pieces of tack I'll never use too. I've added new things over the years such as Easyboots to protect Ketah's feet since shoes weren't doing the job in this wet environment. But I pretty much have collected what I need and replace things only as they wear out. More than anything though, I love my trail saddle.

Years ago I sold my motorcycle to buy a brand new Wintec Pro Endurance Saddle. Honda CBR Hurricane
Wintec Pro Endurance

The trade. I miss the Hurricane sometimes, but I really love this saddle!

I have ridden in this saddle for about ten years now and I still love it. I have finally discovered a fatal flaw however. It won't fit Sati. Switching it to the widest gullet (this saddle lets you change the width of the gullet which is the front part of the saddle which will sit behind the shoulders) might work, but the "bars" of the saddle won't fit. Her back is just too wide and flat.

I thought I could get a western saddle that would fit her better.  It did too, for about 3 months, and then her shoulders filled out more and it started pinching.  Great...
Too bad, it's a comfy western saddle too (and I really don't
usually care for them).  Now I can't decide if I should get rid of it
though.  Good tack can be hard to find..
I gave in and started looking at the expensive saddles that I could get specially ordered for her.  Took quite a bit of effort too.  Had to take lots of pictures, make very specific measurements and finally talk with someone who knew a hell of a lot more than me.  I did my homework and found that many Arab folks use Trumbull Mountain Tack as they carry many different makes of saddle.  I talked to someone there, told her I wanted to trail ride and maybe endurance ride someday.  She set me up with the best saddle I have ever sat in.  It also fit Sati perfectly and immediately helped a number of balance issues we had been having.  It wasn't cheap, but it was totally worth it.
Black Country Celeste endurance saddle.

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