I really like this pad, but it doesn’t sit right on my pony which must be his shape. My friend rode in it with her pony and it looked much better. Both are similar size but just different backs.
This is a handmade bareback saddle pad consisting of pressed wool felt base with soft-top breathable suede leather. The combination of wool and leather offers greater durability, grip, stability and elegant look. It has a contoured shape to fit the horse’s back, providing a superior fit and appearance. It also has additional memory foam cushioning in the wither area for added comfort to the horse and eliminates soreness and pressure points.
Sold to my friend as it just didn’t sit well. Shame as it was comfortable.
This is what I would describe as very close to the Barefoot, it looks very much like the barefoot Cheyenne in style. It has small closed rings as oppose to the Barefoot large rings. The base on the reviewed saddle is 20″, this would be equivalent to the size one, but the actual seat area is a bit smaller. Nicely made in nubuck leather with a slightly higher fibreglass pommel, probably on the lines of the Torsion pommel, it gives a secure feel. You could change this if you wanted though it has a zip, whether the bf pommel sits in would be up to someone else to find out. There is not much spinal clearance with this model, you do need to make sure you have an adequate treeless pad. For want of a better word it is on the non structured floppy side. Designed for endurance by US riders, it is equally as good out and about hacking.
Hilason saddles are designed to fit almost every type of horse! All the saddles I’ve had i’ve bought from them, they all fit my Arabian Mare perfectly. The leather is just perfect! The quality is outstanding and I love the feeling of it when I’m riding it. I’ve ridden it so many times and it also seems like my horse loves it. Everything is just perfectly in place and i was really happy by the quality that it was made. I’ve tried other companies as well but honestly i really like Hilason the best. The leather is really comfortable and very durable.
As for their prices, its unbeatable. I was surprised how such good of a saddle didn’t have sky-high prices.
I really like Hilason and now I don’t buy anything else.
It looks like a treed western saddle. But amazingly it also rides just like one! It has a solid swell/horn, but is interchangeable and they have 5 different widths. It comes in 3 different seat lengths and they will also be doing a childs’ version.
My horse went really well in it. Normally he finds it difficult to maintain a slow jog, but in this saddle no problem. His canter was wonderful in that his back felt so unrestricted.
The saddle is quite firm, so would be no good for a sway backed horse. They are designing one for sway backed horses later in the year. I rode with the Port Lewis Impression Pad. Without a saddle pad under the saddle was a little too low at the front. So I rode with the Mattes Rio Pecos western correctional pad. I put 3 shims in each front pocket to balance the saddle. The Port Lewis showed a little extra pressure still at the front. So I kept the 3 shims in each front pocket and added 1 in each middle pocket, and I added 3 full length shims (I had the pad designed so you can add full length shims in the pad if the horse has a prominent spine (as mine does)) and the impression was almost even. It was a little bit thinner at the front, but hardly different to the rest of the PLIP. So was happy with that. My horse is so very difficult to fit. Nearly everything slips back on him – he a saddle fitters nightmare!
The Mattes pad is really expensive though (retails around £350 for the one I was using which is a modified version of the standard Rio Pecos). So tried a cheaper Pro Correction pad which costs £185. (This has removable shims but not as flexible as the Mattes as you can only put thicker one shim per pocket (Mattes you can put up to 6 thin shims) The results of the cheaper pad were almost as good as the Mattes pad.
So all in all, horse happy, PLIP happy and rider VERY happy to ride in a treeless western saddle that FEELS like a treed western saddle.
I swear by the EZ fit. With the panels on the outside I can mount up my no wither donkeys without the saddle moving at all. Skito pad and a mohair or neoprene girth. Swear by it!
Photo of Shorty a small mammoth donkey.
I bought this saddle in February 2010 after researching on the net about a suitable saddle to accommodate my young Quarter Horse whilst he was growing and provide a functional and comfortable saddle for both of us. He was rising 2 at the time so it was really just for groundwork purposes at that point.
These saddles are made to order by the Amish saddle Eli Beiler, so it is possible to have it in quite a vast range of colours and either with a suede seat or leather seat. You can also choose rigging (english or western centre fire rigging) and what style stirrups and leathers you have. They supply either english leathers, western leathers (about twice the thickness of english ones) or fenders. Stirrup wise you can choose from regular steel irons, endurance style caged stirrups or western style bell stirrups. I fell in love with a photograph of a saddle with tan leather and a blue ostrich leather seat so decided to go with a copy of that one, but with western fenders and stirrups. This saddle is rather unusual in its looks with the buckle system at the rear of the saddle but I think it is rather stylish.
The ingenious thing about these saddles is that they are incredibly adjustable. You can adjust where the stirrup hangers are, where the girth rigging is so you can achieve ultimate stability and also adjust the seat size to get the most comfortable set up for you and your horse. The adjustments are made underneath the seat which is stuck down with heavy duty velcro and fastened down at the rear by the funky buckles. There are inbuilt measurement guides under the seat to ensure you get everything even on both sides, which is a handy feature.
I tested this saddle on my 17 year old Shire x, who is 16hh and takes an xx-wide tree’d saddle which is forever slipping. In 9 years of ownership we haven’t ever found a saddle that didn’t slip. This saddle has a non-slip material on the underneath which is great for stopping the pad from slipping. I have been told you can also use it without a pad in some instances but my riding horse is fussy and doesn’t like grippy materials next to his skin so we used my Professional’s Choice Air Ride pad underneath. The interior of the saddle is close cell foam (including the pommel) so it will mould to fit most horses and to my joy it did stretch enough to fit my wide horse comfortably!!
I have to say I am very impressed with this saddle. We have ridden up and down hills on awkward ground and have had the odd spook and this saddle hasn’t moved an inch. It is incredibly stable! My horse will also rein back and turn on his haunches now which is something he never used to be comfortable doing. He will also stretch down in all paces and he never trips which is something he used to do on a regular basis. From a rider’s point of view it rides very much like a tree’d western saddle, and for surprisingly does have quite a twist, especially as the test subject is almost as wide as he is tall! The pommel doesn’t get in the way when posting to the trot although I keep my rises small. My hips are totally ache free and I also oddly do not get saddle sore in this saddle. It can only be good!
I have recently purchased a 6 year old Quarter Horse who was unbroken and this saddle has been used on him for his groundwork and backing, it also fits him well and he seems very comfortable in it. In fact I look forward to riding all our horses in it!
I have a black forest town & country leather version western rigged and my horse & i LOVE it!!! We ride at times some extremely challenging terrain & this saddle has held up great! We ride with a Haf pad and have always had nice even dry spots along the spine & wither area, no rubs, galling, or welts. Saddle stays put pretty good even climbing nearly straight up a pit wall where my legs were literally over my 14 hand mustangs rump 🙂 We have jumped fallen trees some as high as 3 1/2 -4 foot, maneuvered slippery rocky slopes, crossed swamps, galloped wide open in the fields, wiggled our way through brush & tight spots and have not come across any troubles yet! My horse has not complained to me at all & i feel secure and comfortable in the saddle 🙂
Kola Waste’ is a 14 hand short backed, minimally withered , compact spanish mustang, i do not ride very often with a breast collar & never tried a crupper , although there have been a couple of steep down grades i feel a crupper would have helped a bit , as the saddle with my weight wanted to slide forward a bit…but these grades were extremely steep where the horses but was well above his head…all other hills with gradual declines, we never had an issue, only the STEEP ones!
The town & country has a suede underside which is great as it really sticks to the pad you are using, has enough d-rings for my liking, real nice contact with the horse..not nearly as bulky as many of the other treeless saddles i have tried. The seat just hugs you in and i have never come home sore, i feel my horses every move and even tho i have been riding for 30 years, i feel my riding skills have improved even more 🙂 My only suggestion is that if you are new to riding treeless & you get a town & country, to either wear some suede chaps or request the suede seat cover from the company as the leather seat can feel a bit slippery until you are used to it.
I am now the proud owner of a bareback saddle pad!! My Hubby bought it for me after my last post. Woo Hoo!!
This is what my new BB pad looks like, but in navy blue. There’s a water bottle holder on the other side.
I tried it out on Ava first. Let me preface this by saying I haven’t ridden bareback in well over a year, and that was back when I was in tip-top shape and had actual balance. Now, I’m way out of shape and have a definite lack of balance (I’m all over the dang place even in a saddle).
I was trepidatious about riding bareback even with a bareback pad. Ava has been rather naughty lately. Nothing too horrible, but she seems to think there are only two gears: speed-walking, or gallop. Anything else is met by a small tantrum. And Ava has decided that only Ava will…