Manufacturer: Southern Trails
Model: R-8005 A Fork Roping Saddle
Category: Roping Saddles
Purchase: I purchased my Southern Trails saddle on line after talking to the owner, Kevin. I found Kevin to be very knowledgeable and more then helpful, offering some suggestions that I took advantage of when I put in my order. The saddle, with all the changes I made to it came to only $1,800. A rather small price for a totally custom built saddle. BTW, he has many saddle that start at half that price.
Likes: The saddle fit from the very first ride. There was virtually no break in period. Every one who sits in the saddle remarks how comfortable and secure it feels. I found the leather to be first class and supple. The tooling, as I requested it, came out better then I envisioned. I've only put on ~100 or so hours in the saddle, with the longest ride being ~8 hours, and it gets better each time. In over 30 years of owning horses (and a few saddles!) this is the one that I can see handing down to my kids.
Dislikes: That I wasn't smart enough to get one sooner.
Quality: I found the tree stout enough to hold up to roping anything I choose. The quality of the leather is on a par with Herman Oaks but supple enough that it required virtually no break in period. The stainless hardware is the heaviest that I've seen on any saddle and the tooling was executed exactly as I ordered with more then I expected (as in the back of the cantle, the back of the skirt, and even the conchos).
Summary: This is my second saddle from Southern Trails. The first was a gift for my wife. After seeing her saddle, I designed mine and I couldn't be more satisfied.
Author: Bill in SC
Usefulness Rating: 2.4 out of 5.
5 reader(s) voted.
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