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Western Saddle Pad Advice

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  • Western Saddle Pad Advice

    I'm thinking about getting a new western saddle pad, for my high withered, new gaited horse. I'm thinking about getting one with a cut out for his withers. Also, saddles have a tendency to slip back on him (we use a breast collar for long rides or if we're doing hills). Does anyone have any advice on pads I should look at? I'm really just a casual western rider (usually ride dressage), so I don't really know the brands or models...Thanks!
    "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
    <>< I.I.

  • #2
    I like Professional Choice. But there are so many other brands out there hopefully others can offer more suggestions.

    Does your saddle have a full or rounded skirt?

    I just bought an Abetta rounded skirt saddle and my Skito pad fits wonderfully under it. www.sportsaddle.com You can get an idea what they look like on this site.

    Edited to add: Are you using a Gaited Horse saddle on him?
    Last edited by Huntertwo; Oct. 29, 2007, 06:48 PM. Reason: added sentence
    MnToBe Twinkle Star: "Twinkie"

    Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


    • #3
      I love my air ride pad, it was pricey but I love that pad.



      • #4
        I am a traditionalist when it comes to saddle pads. I swear by 1" wool felt.


        • #5
          I use the Professionals Choice SMX Air-Ride pad on my super thin skinned gelding, and it works great for him. I used a thick wool felt pad at first, and he got a bad rub on our first long trail ride. Switched to the SMX and no further problems.


          • Original Poster

            Katarine -- The link you gave is actually the pad I'm thinking of getting, but thought I would check in here before I did. I found it on closeout on one site for $99 if I'm willing to take a funky color.

            Huntertwo -- Right now I'm riding in a Circle Y round skirt saddle (non-flex, medium tree), but may be switching to a Tucker in the near future. So I'm looking for a round skirt pad, for clearance sake. I also like Professional choice, hence the reason I'm eyeing the orthopad. Since my boy is high withered and a bit thin at the moment, and the saddle tends to slip back, I like the extra padding.

            Sithly, I tried my hubby's wool felt pad on him, and I don't think it worked for us. I do think he needs a cut back style. I should really take a picture of his withers!

            (as an aside, if anyone remembers my hunt for a saddle for this guy, I ended up buying a used Keifer Wein for bumming around and schooling. He loves it, I love it, but for long trail rides I still prefer a western style.)
            "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
            <>< I.I.


            • #7
              Jazz I've logged a ton of miles on that pad. I use a pad liner under it (the Dixie Midnight one, FYI) to keep it clean and dry. It has a channel down the spine that's thinner to alleviate pressure there, and the cushy shoulders make a world of difference on my funky built QH and my still growing TWH. Love it. Tough, too, very well made. I think I've had mine 2, maybe 3 years? and I ride a lot.

              I also love wool navajo pads but for these two horses I needed that filling behind the shoulders. I also like the 1" wool pads, too- very good pads.


              • #8
                Originally posted by Sithly View Post
                I am a traditionalist when it comes to saddle pads. I swear by 1" wool felt.
                Another vote for wool felt.


                • Original Poster

                  I gave some thought to buying a wool pad with a cut out for his withers (which my husband's wool pad didn't have), but in the end decided to go with this the Professional Choice pad since I found it on closeout in cranberry for $89.99. Cranberry looks to me like it's a light burgandy -- that's gotta be better than lime colored, and I saved $30-40.

                  Thanks for helping me think it through! We'll see if this makes my Circle Y work a bit better for him.
                  "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
                  <>< I.I.


                  • #10
                    The Reinsman Tacky Too pads are also really nice, and they make one for higher withers.
                    Visit the County Island, home of Whiskey the ranch horse: http://countyisland.wordpress.com
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                    • #11
                      A thinline junky checking in. I couldn't find just the right cut of thinline for my saddle so I bought their square western pad and cut it to size. You could cut out just the right size cutback.
                      my horse trailer was stolen from kentucky horse park. Seen it?


                      • Original Poster

                        Shoot. I was hoping to get the new pad today and try it out this weekend on trail and report back. But the UPS man did not visit my house today.

                        I comforted myself by swinging by Dover and buying a new helmet (the Troxel Sierra in black!)
                        "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
                        <>< I.I.


                        • #13
                          Make sure that the Tucker really fits, I know it doesn't fit some gaited horses well. If you are on the search for a saddle, check out Alleghany Mountain Trail Saddles or Crest Ridge Saddles, I have heard great things about both. I want the AMTS Wade saddle but do not have the money. I am currently talking with Debra at Crest Ridge because I am having issues with my mare and the Abetta saddle that I am using. I am thinking of buying a Synthetic saddle from her. She is great, really knows her stuff.

                          Good Luck! Oh and make sure you are putting your saddle far enough back off of your horses shoulders. I just learned that I was putting mine to far forward.
                          Missouri Fox Trotters-To ride one is to own one

                          Standardbreds, so much more then a harness racing horse.


                          • #14
                            ...and the Crest Ridge I JUST sold to my student didn't fit either of MY gaited horses, but fits my student's horse (SSH) like a charm. With any saddle, proceed with caution and great skepticism and don't get a Crest Ridge in black -please. I bought ours used off ebay and that sucker bleeds black on everything

                            The Tucker meanwhile, fits one beautifully, the other, notsomuch


                            • Original Poster

                              I'm definately not getting my boy a new saddle without trying it first, and getting a few opinions on fit. He's been ridden for too long in poor fitting saddles -- I promised him we'd find one that works for him. I really like the Tuckers and want to try them first. I have heard, however, that there is a chance that they won't work for him. I'm crossing my fingers though. I'll look into Crestridge too -- although I'm bummed to hear about the black leather, since that's his color.

                              Oh and make sure you are putting your saddle far enough back off of your horses shoulders. I just learned that I was putting mine to far forward.
                              Funny --- I always feel like I'm putting mine too far back, and I scoot it forward. This new horse is so different from my others, I need to find someone local who knows TWHs and his build, and give me some advice. I am happy to say that he's had no back soreness from our riding, so the new Kieffer and my Circle Y (well padded) have been working for him.

                              Katarine -- Tell me again what model Tucker you have?
                              "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
                              <>< I.I.