Model: Prostock Flying Fenders
Category: Trail Saddles
Purchase: Website purchase from Crazy Horse Tack and Gift. $1300
Likes: I do a lot of trail riding. After having a shirt practically ripped off my back and almost getting gored in the ribs from the saddle horn of a Western saddle catching in my shirt when a horse spooked on the trail, I decided I needed something with no horn that ideally had some extra security for helping to keep me from flying off spooking green horses. So began my quest for my ideal trail saddle. Since I ride a lot of different sized horses from high withered, sway backed, narrow backed horses to mutton withered large barreled horses, it became apparent that it was not cost effective to buy a saddle for every horse that I might have to ride. This narrowed the field down to adjustable gullet or flexible tree saddles without horns. After looking and trying out several endurance saddles and Australian stock saddles I found just what I was looking for in the Wintec adjustable gullet with CAIR panels Prostock Flying Fenders saddle. The gullet is easily adjusted to fit all of my horses and the CAIR panels prevent the saddle from bridging on my horses' backs. This saddle is a hybrid between a Western saddle and an Australian saddle. It has the swinging stock fenders similar to a Western saddle that really helps to prevent stirrup leather rubbing that can happen with English leathers. The swinging stock fenders combined with the deep seat and Western style of shorter saddle skirts is more comfortable and seems to be more secure as far as staying in balance with the horse. The synthetic leather is grippy and easy to care for. It is easily cleaned by just hosing it off with water. The greatest item about this saddle is the Australian poleys that help keep you from flying off the horse when a horse suddenly puts on the brakes or jumps to the side trying to avoid some imaginary trail monster. I have had this saddle for almost a year and use it for 4-5 hour trail rides several times a week. It looks as good as the day I got it. It is extremely light weight so it makes it easy for people with little upper body strength to tack up.
Dislikes: If you buy this saddle, be prepared for the strange stares traditional endurance riders are going to give you when you ride in this saddle. Traditional riders seem to liken the australian poleys to training wheels on a bicycle. Also, if you do a lot of fast trotting, be prepared for the squeaking sound that is going to happen as you impact the saddle and the synthetic leather or perhaps the CAIR panels impact up and down on your horse or rub side to side. Additionally, on the down side, this is not an inexpensive saddle. I tried for over a year to find a used one without any luck. I ended up ordering a new one and waiting for 3 months to get my saddle as the saddle is apparently so popular.
Quality: The quality of this saddle is right in line with the rest of the Wintec synthetic saddles with the adjustable gullet and CAIR panels. I have a Wintec Isabell Dressage saddle and the workmanship is similar. I have owned many different saddles over the past 30 years and I would have to say this saddle is probably going to outlast me.
Summary: This saddle combines some of the best features of a Western Saddle and Australian saddle. It is hard to find a saddle that is not only secure, comfortable, easy to care for, light, as well as fitting a lot of different shapes of horses but the Wintec Prostock with Flying Stock Fenders, adjustable gullet and CAIR panels comes closer to meeting those goals than any other saddle I have owned. This saddle was worth every penny I paid.
Usefulness Rating: 2.25 out of 5.
4 reader(s) voted.
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