The adventures of Gilly the rescue horse and his side kick and partner in crime, Pokey the donkey.


Being with a horse is a journey that never ends. What they have to teach us is amazing; but we must quiet our mind to hear them. ~ jca


Friday, April 9, 2010

Aussie saddles

Here is Gilly as in August of 2004, he was a year and a half old with the first saddle I had for him. A bit big isn't it? I had just set it on his back to see what he would do with a saddle on, didn't even have a girth on, it wouldn't have fit anyway. I walked him up and down the road a few times just so he could feel it. He doesn't look too happy about it does he? He didn't buck or even hump up his back just took it all in stride, the thing he really didn't like was the bit in his mouth. Look how long the stirrups are on him. Then look at the picture below as a three year old, stirrups have changed considerably!

Gilly in the round pen at Kim's as a three year old. I loved that saddle but eventually sold it because it was so heavy and hard to girth up but it was a comfortable saddle and I really liked it. It also seemed to fit him well. I then went to several other saddles that didn't fit at all before going to the Abetta western and the Thornhill dressage saddles that I now have. Both of those saddles are nice but........

Another picture of Gilly at three. I also had the crupper for the saddle and he was OK with that too, no bucking. I figured he might throw a fit about it but good boy that he is, he was fine.
Why am I writing about this if I like the saddles I have now??? Because of Jill at Buckskin and Bay...go and check out her new Aussie saddle! Here is the web site to look at some more of them I have been reading and reading about these saddles and that they will fit your horse by you taking tracings for the horses back and shoulders. That first saddle I had was a cheap saddle and after looking that the ones at Aussie Saddle, I see a big difference and I can get it to fit Gilly's back much better.
Now here's the best part.....they are going to be at the Equine Affaire in Columbus, Ohio this weekend and ....... I am going with a couple of friends!!! Jill got to see and talk to them at a horse expo in her town and really check out the saddles. Well, me too!!! I am excited!! I have missed the Aussie saddle, even though I love my dressage saddle and the Abetta western. I will tell them good bye to have another Aussie saddle. I have a lot of thinking and studying to do before then but..... I ain't no dressage rider and don't really wanna be, I just wanna ride on the country roads and me and Gilly both be comfortable with saddle and bridle. I have the bridle, just need to redo the saddle part.
I hope to get pictures tomorrow and have a story to tell after the trip. Oh, we are also going to see the Lipizzaner horses too, what a fun day! Don't worry, I have pain pills to take along, I know my feet are going to hurt even in my good Ariat boots but to see these horses and check out a new saddle....sigh....I will suffer through it!!! :-)


jill said...

Be prepared to spend money!

jane augenstein said...

Jill, I want to save for the saddle, but it would be nice to have about a million bucks to take along!!! LOL

Jeni said...

I LOVE my Aussie saddle! I had to do some modifications to the stirrup leathers as my legs are short, and I put a grab strap on it... but I agree the most comfortable saddle I've ever sat in!

First time I cinched it though I got way too tight! Boy did Bonnie tell me about it immediately, and loudly!

I had plans to go to the equine affair too tomorrow... but I'll be cleaning the "other place"... shhhh...

Have a great weekend!

Pony Girl said...

Oh very cool! I think the Aussie saddles always look so interesting...I have never sat in one. Would like to try, trust you that they are comfy!
I would like to purchase an older cutback saddle for my sis and I to mess around in. They aren't too hard to find, I just haven't committed to it yet. Other things to spend money on, LOL! Have fun at the affaire!

jane augenstein said...

JeniQ, I don't have the short leg problem, mine are long. I have a grab strap on my dressage saddle that I will keep for my new saddle (when and if I get one)
Oh, ouch...I'll bet she did let you know!
Oh, too bad you aren't going to the Equine Affaire. I might have run into you!

PonyGirl, yes, trust me they are comfy to ride! If you get a chance to sit on one do try it!! How is your Appy boy doing??

Dee Ann Kilbourn said...

Have fun!

Unknown said...

I rode in a very well made aussie saddle once, very lovely. Gilly is such a strapping man.

allhorsestuff said...

Great picture from the days of he was cute(and still is) in a bigger kind of way!)
Loved the saddles...but yea..20 lbs or less for this girl. I think that is good for my mare. I make the poundage diff!

Oh You have fun at that event...!!!!

Jeni said...

Enjoy Equine Affair !!!!

Desert Rose said...

hay..when you love a saddle...that fits you just gotta have it!!!

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

I've sat in an Aussie saddle and yes they are comfy, but the way my legs are so forward and me in a sitting position concerns me because my Henry Miller Plantation sits me like that and I think that helped contribute to me falling out of it. Of course, my Henry Miller saddle was just a 'naked' A-Frame tree without any secure poleys to lock me in, like the Aussie saddles have.

Also the English girths intimdate me a little bit. I'm just so used to the Western way of cinching up a horse it would take some getting used to.

Does this mean you don't advocate anyone buying the Abetta saddles now?
So far I do like mine a lot. I've ridden it twice on 6-7 mile trail rides and Apache and I have both finished up comfortable. And I love the price, of course.
But I still miss the leather of a nice saddle. So one day I'll probably upgrade to a new saddle.
Oooh! I love love love the Clinton Anderson Aussie style saddles. I sat in one at the last clinic I went to and it fit me like a glove and was so comfy and secure!

Oh you know I am so envious of you going to see the Lippizzaners! I've been wanting to see them for so many years, but it just hasn't worked out. Bummer! Take photos and tell us all about it.

You're going to have so much fun...friends,!


jane augenstein said...

Dee Ann, Oh, it was fun!

Sydney, yes, Gil is a BIG boy!

Kacy, yes, Gil looks cute in the saddle when he was a youngster! I have found a few of the Aussies of lighter weight and what's what I am looking for. 26 pounds doesn't sound like a lot but it is to me.

JeniQ, oh, it was FUN!!!

Desert Rose, oh, I agree!

Lisa, I used to sit with my legs forward, which was wrong. Made my legs, feet and knees hurt all the time. But after riding the dressage saddle and learning to keep my legs down so my ears, shoulders, hips and heels are all in a straight line...oh, my legs feel so much better and I am more on my balance point. When you are balanced you ride better and of course it's better on the horse's back too!
The poleys don't lock you in just gives you something to catch you if you start going forward. If they are tight on your leg the saddle is too small, there should be space between you and the poley.
The first Aussie was really hard to girth up, it was a cheaper saddle and the girthing system wasn't so good. My dressage saddle is easy to girth up but the Aussie saddles I looked at in Columbus had a different girthing system that is really, really easy.
Oh, yes, Abetta saddles are still a favorite and are very comfortable but my first love of saddles is the Aussie, it's kind of a mix between the western and English saddles and that I really like.
Oh, yes, the Lipizzaner's were WONDERFUL!!! I took lots of pictures which I will post later.


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