Best Western Trail Saddles: What To Look For

Last Updated on July 2, 2022 by Guillermina

Choosing the best Western trail saddles for you and your horse should be a priority if you frequently partake in trail riding competitions. While making a choice isn’t easy, there are some things you can keep in mind to help you along the way.

Trial riding might not seem like it, but it’s a pretty competitive sport. After choosing your best horse for the task, you’ll need to gear them with the right saddle.

In this article, I share why having a quality saddle is important and give some guidelines to help you choose the best Western trail saddle for you!

Reason You Always Need A Saddle

You always need to use a saddle when riding a horse. It can save you and your horse from injuries. 

A saddle is there to distribute your weight evenly across your horse’s back. Without a saddle, you will feel a lot heavier to your horse, and they’ll find it harder to run or jump. 

The stirrups on a saddle help you keep your balance. Without these rings that hold your foot, you’ll bounce around on your horse’s back and fall off. 

Saddles also save you from a lot of pain. It provides a soft, comfortable resting place for your behind. A horse’s back is very hard, and since you’ll bounce with every gallop, sitting without a saddle can become painful.

A saddle also has many belts and buckles that are useful for holding your kit or gear when traveling by horse. 

What to Look For In A Horse Saddle

There are some things that can influence your choice of saddle. Make your decision based on: 

Your Riding Style

There are different saddles available for each type of riding style. You should choose a saddle that best fits yours since they’re designed for specific purposes. 

Some saddles that were designed for specific riding styles include:

  • Dressage Saddle
  • English Saddle
  • Western Saddle
  • General Purpose Saddle
  • Chinese Saddle
  • Jumping Saddle
  • Roping Saddle
  • Hunting Saddle
  • Youth Saddle
  • Reining Saddle
  • Side Saddle
  • Polo Saddle
  • Racing Saddle
  • Treeless Saddle
  • Australian Stock Saddle
  • Trick Saddle
  • Police Saddle
  • Barrel Racing Saddle
  • Cutting Saddle
  • Ranch Saddle
  • Double Seat Saddle
  • Endurance Saddle
  • Japanese Saddle
  • McClellan Saddle
  • Military Saddle 
  • Pack Saddle
  • Pony Saddle
  • Pleasure Saddle

The Fit

I don’t suggest buying a saddle online. It’s best to fit the one you like before purchasing it. You should ensure it fits your horse comfortably and that you feel comfortable sitting on it. 

The Material

Always go for a genuine leather saddle that has leather belts and buckles. Look at the finer details like stitching before you buy a saddle that looks genuine.

Some saddles are made with synthetic or suede leather, and they have some advantages as well. Synthetic leather saddles are lighter than genuine leather ones and don’t cost as much.

The Cost

If you have a limited budget, you can consider the different factors of each saddle and choose which you’re willing to compromise to fit your pocket.

However, if your budget isn’t a problem, it would be better to go for the most expensive, high-quality leather saddle suited for your riding style. Horseback riding is strenuous, and a cheaper saddle will wear out much faster. 

 What is the lightest Western trail saddle?

The Best Western Trail Saddle: What to Expect

The AceRugs All Natural Cowhide Western Leather Horse Saddle is considered the best on the market. This high-quality saddle’s only con is that it can’t fit high-withered horses. 

It’s made from 100% premium genuine leather that weighs about 26 pounds. The tooling is hand-carved, and it has numerous ties. This saddle seat is padded well, and the Blevins Buckles can adjust to suit your needs. 

When choosing a Western Trail Saddle, quality is key. You don’t want a saddle that will wear out in a couple of rides. If it does, you’ll end up spending even more money than just settling for the more expensive saddle from the start. 

Trail rides can be long, and the saddle you choose should be able to endure the strain that you’ll put on it. 

You should carefully consider what each saddle offers before making your choice. There are many western trail saddles on the market, and all riders have their own opinions on which one is the best. 

The Finishing Touch

 What is the most popular horse saddle?

You need to choose a horse saddle that suits your riding needs and sits you comfortably. The best ones are made from real leather, but some pretty good saddles are made from alternative materials.

You can talk to other riders and read a bunch of reviews online before deciding which saddle will suit you best. Fitting them beforehand is also a good idea.

I hope you liked this article and know a little more about what to look for in a Western horse riding saddle. If you have any more questions about saddles, ask them in the comments!

FAQs

What is the best Western saddle?

The best Western saddle is one made from genuine leather. It should be thick and pliable. The saddle should also fit your horse comfortably, and you should get a soft seat that will help minimize the impact bouncing has on your muscles.

What is the lightest Western trail saddle?

Lightweight saddles are mostly built with synthetic leather and other materials. Good-quality ones won't compromise durability or comfort because of this.

Genuine leather Western saddles weigh between 30 and 40 pounds, while synthetic alternatives weigh between 4 and 5 pounds. You can find high-quality lightweight saddles from lighter materials weighing approximately 22 pounds.

What should I look for in a trail saddle?

When shopping for a trail saddle, keep quality, durability, sturdiness, and seating design in mind. Your trail saddle should be soft enough so you'll sit comfortably but sturdy enough to handle frequent riding.

What is the most popular horse saddle?

No one will ever agree when the most loved horse riding saddle needs to be chosen, but some good ones are the Manaal Enterprises Premium Western Leather Saddle, the Acerugs Western Horse Saddle, the Horowgood T4 COB GP Saddle, and the Whitaker Bedale GP.