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Let's Talk about Saddle Bags

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  • Let's Talk about Saddle Bags

    It's time to start carrying water on the trail, which means I need to order saddle bags. Here's what I think I want, though I'm open to other suggestions:

    -Cantle bag
    -Rider card holder
    -2 water bottle holsters
    -Must fit with at Stonewall endurance saddle & not bounce.

    I don't carry a lot of stuff, but I'd like to have room for a jacket and maybe an easyboot or two.

    What brands/models do you like? Any special considerations I should add to my list?
    Training and campaigning Barb endurance horses at The Barb Wire.

  • #2
    Can you post a photo of that particular saddle? or a link to it?

    I use western stirrup hobbles (leather)
    http://www.chicksaddlery.com/page/CDS/PROD/1087/190660
    or the web English spur straps http://www.stcroixsaddlery.com/Photo...5FERS%5F401121
    to fasten items to my saddle. I punch extra holes in the western leather straps but the English web spur straps can be buckled anyplace at all.


    With an endurance saddle, that has no horn, wrap the stirrup hobble/spur strap around the pommel. You can even add WELDED d-rings to the strap. I find good D-rings in hardware stores and sometimes even in craft stores (be careful though, sometimes those are very weak and "bendy")

    Wow, I just came across this little one ...
    http://www.outfitterssupply.com/prod...?number=WTM170
    there is also a set of pommel bags for endurance saddles at that website.

    THe ones that I have are no longer sold but are very similar to the TrailMax ones. I just love them. Water-proof cordura with ... ZIPPERS. I can easily clip the zipper tags closed and nothing falls out. The bags have multiple rings on them to make them easily attached to almost anywhere on the saddle.

    Came across this selection too... interesting assortment with fleece/ wool on the underside.
    http://www.snugpax.com/default.htm
    Last edited by gabz; May. 5, 2008, 05:31 PM. Reason: Found Another site...

    Comment


    • #3
      I've got a Stubben Scout. I don't know how it compares with your saddle on number and placement of D-rings. For saddle bags I use "butt packs" from Blackhawk (the guys who make police SWAT gear). They are durable and roomy. They have multiple external attachment points. They even have handles! I can attach a one quart canteen holder to each bag (if I wish). I made a couple of "tie down straps" out of black, nylon strapping I bought from a local police supply house. The rig is a lot less money than the stuff offered at tack shops I've visited and of better quality.

      I could add a cantle bag if I wished, but have not done so and won't until I make a cantle shelf.

      What's a "card holder"?

      I "roll" my slicker and attach it to the pommel of the saddle with nylon "coat straps" made from the same material as the "tiedowns."

      Works pretty good!

      G.
      Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

      Comment


      • #4
        I have this for water http://www.nationalbridle.com/product-p/1-6837.htm

        I also have something like this http://www.nationalbridle.com/product-p/1-6865.htm but I haven't used it yet.

        Comment


        • #5
          I have a cantle bag that is called "Sportrack" I think, and then it says "product of easy care", and I LOVE it. But, I cannot find anything like it on the easy care website It's snug to the saddle, has a fleece lining underneath, and is nice. I got it when I bought my abetta, wish I could find another one because it's green and I want a black one for my other abetta.
          (¯`·._¤ Jess!·._¤ ´¯)

          Comment


          • #6
            I've said this before. Go to a bike section of any big department store and they have nice CCM or equivalent nylon bags for bikes that really fit well, cost next to nothing, don't weigh anything and work. They are a made fit for my Abetta saddle.
            The first thing to put in one of them is a small pack of kleenex in a plastic bag. You guess what for
            I get 5-10 years out of a bag and mine are always full. Gloves, glasses, kleenex, stop watch , hat, face mask etc etc.
            I also have a good knife in a case that doubles as a hoof pick as well as equipment repair. I also have a shoe lace to lacing???

            Comment


            • #7
              Look at this CCM bag on Shadow. It is 5 plus years old and often stuff right full in winter. It shows no wear, fits the riging on the Abetta saddle, cheap,light and some of the new ones and there is a new one on the other side and it is fuller but fits nicely.
              And they are black to match the saddle

              You can also see the blue bottle holder on this shot, minus the bottle

              Comment


              • #8
                Try snugpax.com
                or http://www.easycareinc.com/Other_Pro...way_packs.aspx
                Bth are basically the same design but different companies. If you call the woman at snugpax she will design a pack to ensure fit for your stonewall saddle.

                Ashley

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Shadow14 View Post
                  Look at this CCM bag on Shadow. It is 5 plus years old and often stuff right full in winter. It shows no wear, fits the riging on the Abetta saddle, cheap,light and some of the new ones and there is a new one on the other side and it is fuller but fits nicely.
                  And they are black to match the saddle

                  You can also see the blue bottle holder on this shot, minus the bottle

                  And it doesn't bounce much? Hrm...I might have to get one of those, but then I'd have to get a front mounting water bottle, I like my back ones.

                  But something to think about. *ponders*
                  (¯`·._¤ Jess!·._¤ ´¯)

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Thanks for the ideas so far! I'm thinking harder about pommel bags, rather than cantle bags, now.

                    gabz, there are photos of my Stonewall saddle in my most recent blog post -- see link in my sig line.
                    Training and campaigning Barb endurance horses at The Barb Wire.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      OH DEFINITELY Pommel bags... I've got both - but for 3 - 4 hour rides, I pretty much just use the pommel ones. That way, you don't have to dismount to grab something.

                      In the cantle bags, I keep "heavy-duty" first aid stuff, additional water bottles, lunch (for the longer rides), spare shoe / boot, collapsable water bucket, rain poncho, etc.

                      The pommel bags, I can carry tube of Banamine paste, leg wrap, rope halter, large bottle of water, large plastic bag (to water horse if necessary), minor first aid, camera, map, etc.

                      Barbey - your link creates an email ... ???

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Originally posted by gabz View Post
                        OH DEFINITELY Pommel bags... I've got both - but for 3 - 4 hour rides, I pretty much just use the pommel ones. That way, you don't have to dismount to grab something.

                        In the cantle bags, I keep "heavy-duty" first aid stuff, additional water bottles, lunch (for the longer rides), spare shoe / boot, collapsable water bucket, rain poncho, etc.

                        The pommel bags, I can carry tube of Banamine paste, leg wrap, rope halter, large bottle of water, large plastic bag (to water horse if necessary), minor first aid, camera, map, etc.

                        Barbey - your link creates an email ... ???
                        Yes, I'm leaning toward pommel bags now.

                        Thanks for the heads-up regarding my link! I've fixed it.
                        Training and campaigning Barb endurance horses at The Barb Wire.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Everyone I know uses the Stowaway bags (mainly pommel) and loves them
                          I have horse to sell to you. Horse good for riding. Can pull cart. Horse good size. Eats carrots and apples. Likes attention. Move head to music. No like opera! You like you buy.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Do folks really ride for three or four hours a time without dismouting? My kness (and my horse's back) would have some real objections to that.

                            Seems to me that a dimount every hour or so for a few minutes is just good horsemanship. And a chance to get a drink, take a pee, etc.

                            G.
                            Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Guilherme View Post
                              Do folks really ride for three or four hours a time without dismouting? My kness (and my horse's back) would have some real objections to that.

                              Seems to me that a dimount every hour or so for a few minutes is just good horsemanship. And a chance to get a drink, take a pee, etc.

                              G.
                              Not really. Most rides even if you never dismounted are 90 minute sections at best. You run into water about every 6 or so miles so you get off there. The vet checks are 12-15 miles so you are off there. I also tend to jog beside the horse at times to give him a break and let me do some of the work.
                              That said on my winter outtings over the frozen snow with perfect footing I will travel at a good clip for 3 hours with basically no letup other then a pee break and no the horse doesn't get water or anything to eat and he is fine.
                              I often prefer a easy lope, sit back and let the horse rock under you. I am not worried about saving the horse but at rides it is different and I travel at a good working trot to conserve his strength.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Guilherme View Post
                                Do folks really ride for three or four hours a time without dismouting? My kness (and my horse's back) would have some real objections to that.

                                Seems to me that a dimount every hour or so for a few minutes is just good horsemanship. And a chance to get a drink, take a pee, etc.

                                G.
                                Yes, definitely. We regularly ride 3-4 hours at home, or even more without dismounting. At rides it's a little different because your vet check can be anywhere from 1.5 - 2 hours out of camp.

                                But at home - you bet! Especially in the winter when we're wandering the pine forests and marshes.

                                On my baby (5 yr old) I try to get off every couple hours and walk/give her a break but on my older mare, I've ridden 5 hours straight, no problem. Mounting, dismounting, and walking are much harder for me than staying in the saddle.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Guilherme View Post

                                  What's a "card holder"?
                                  G.
                                  To hold your vet card so you don't lose it between checks.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I would love to see anyone sit a saddle for 5 hours and not get off?? Impossible, butt would be so sore you couldn't move. NOt to mention the legs. Walking kills the butt faster then anything else. Trotting is far easier on you then walking. While I often / regularly travel 2 hours without dismounting I also don't walk, lope alot, jog alot, walk very little and my old butt is more use to riding then most.
                                    5 hours impossible without taking a break.
                                    3 hours with good footing takes me about 25 miles from home, 5 hours would put me in another country]
                                    Have to remember my passport.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Well, it's not impossible for me.

                                      In fact - I sat in a saddle for 5 hours just recently when I worked a public event on my mounted patrol/S&R horse. It was an all day event. And that was just SITTING. Not even riding. Just sitting and wandering back and forth across the grounds ocassionally. I was up for about 5 1/2 hours.

                                      But yes, we definitely ride for 4 hrs at a time without getting off. Ocassionally 5 hrs. Not that frequently, but we do it. We don't just swing a leg over and bust ass for mile after mile. In the winter we do a LOT of walking and stopping to take photos, or just stopping to enjoy scenery. We ride the road ditches, pine forests, marshes, and down to the river and back, through the DNR woods and grasslands. Most often it is a 4 hour ride. I think the horses get a good deal of conditioning and workout just from walking and slow trotting. I really see no reason to run everywhere we go. It's a lot of pounding on the body.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        For carrying water, I love my pommel bags (there are two versions):

                                        http://www.longridersgear.com/catalo...cPath=79_29_56

                                        I've used a lot of pommel bags/systems over the years, these are the best. Once strapped down, there is no movement. Plenty of space and zippers to hold a multitude of things right there in front of you, and the two holders on the side are very roomy, I've put very large bottles in them!
                                        Last edited by Shadowsrider; May. 12, 2008, 04:35 PM. Reason: Typo.....
                                        Laura Martlock
                                        Virginia Horse Council Board of Directors
                                        Owner of The Mane Street
                                        Wildwood Farm Lessons and Training

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