Monday, July 21, 2008

Champ's tack

Here's another picture of Champ, with his current tack.
Definitely looking for wolves

I ride him (actually, all the TWHs) in this Tennessean Endurance Saddle. When I bought Champ, I bought his saddle too, but I really hated it. It was an actual honest-to-god roping saddle. It weighed like 40 lbs, and it was designed for a man. A very manly stoic man. I promptly traded it in at the feed store for a rather horrible cheap black generic western saddle. The best thing about the black saddle was its weight - it had a fiberglass tree and cordura fenders, so it weighed about 20 lbs. However, it wasn't much more comfortable for me and I'm sure it wasn't great for Champ. My friend Sara recommended the Tennesseans, so I watched til one finally went up for sale. I paid $300 for my saddle, and I think I got a steal :)

The pommel is fairly high, so it clears Champ's sharklike withers nicely. The seat is amazingly comfy. The fenders are cordura, so they're 1) light 2) easy to clean and 3) very thin, so you can feel the horse with your legs. I lost a breastcollar D-ring and had to sew a replacement on at one point, but other than that, I haven't had to make any repairs.

The blue strap on the pommel is just a ziptie, loosely attached. I use it as a place to hook crap onto the saddle - that day, I hooked the camera bag onto the ziptie.

And no, I DO NOT miss having a horn at all. IMO, all the horn is good for is stabbing you in the stomach as you try to duck under that low-hanging tree branch. I can hook crap on to the pommel via the ziptie, and the pommel is nicely shaped to act as a handhold in case of airs above ground. If I want to rope cows, I will go buy a real roping saddle and only ride in it when working cows. Horns are just goofy superfluous things for 95% of the riders out there.

I like neoprene girths. They stay clean, and when they do get dirty they're easy to clean. For the same reason, I like nylon cinches and off-billets. I never have to worry about keeping my cinch oiled or checking for cracks - it's pretty obvious when it starts to wear. Like WHP, I used to ride with a breastcollar, but the land here is so flat that I've taken it off.

Champ's blanket is purple because he is a pimp. Actually, all of my equipment is purple if I can get it in purple, or spray-painted safety orange otherwise. I used to board, and I'm sure I'll be boarding again soon. People will walk right off with your black English bridle, but for some reason they hesitate to steal purple roping reins or bright orange pitchforks.

That's Champ's bridle. It came with him. The old fellow who sold Champ to me told me that he'd go just fine in that bridle. Since he also told me to stay out of Champ's mouth, and bad things happened when I didn't... well, I haven't ever tried Champ in a different bit or bridle. At this point, I think I could deal with it, but why mess with success?

The bit is almost exactly like this one, but I think my shanks are shorter, maybe 6". The bridle used to have a separate throatlatch, with cool homemade silver-dollar conchos, but I took the throatlatch off. I'm not entirely sure what the point of the throatlatch is, honestly, but it wasn't doing anything for us.

1 comment:

  1. What a very handsome boy! He reminds me of my Midnight--the dream horse of my childhood. Very nice photo.


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