|Next time we'll double the budget and give the kids $10 to see if that buys us a friendly one ;).|
I've also read too many CoTH forums custom saddle fitting and ordering nightmare threads. If there's a saddle shopping anxiety disorder I think I now have it...even the thought of getting the fitter out makes me worried.
Luckily, we can now save the dramatics and frustration for another worthwhile cause, because (I can't even believe I'm typing this) - THE SADDLE WE TRIED TONIGHT FITS! It fits both of us! We had a jump lesson! Using our own saddle! There was no saddle slipping, there was no pony bucking. I rode in my usual less than stellar manner, but still felt safe and secure (side note - I think I might need to start my own CoTH inspired "Missed It Mondays" for my Monday night jump lessons, then I will be failing for a cause.
The saddle in question is a 20 year old County Pro Fit. I'm told it was intended as a hunter saddle and built on a Stabilizer tree. I had my fingers crossed because I know a wide tree stablizer of the same vintage nearly fits. After a year of searching for a used XW stablizer without success, this will do! This saddle is obviously not perfect, and comes with a few pros and cons:
|Same pic as yesterday...I failed at getting a pic of B wearing it, all part of my Missed It Mondays ;)|
Con: It's 20 years old! I'm definitely not going to be trendy or cool.
Pro: It appears to have been sitting for at least the last 15. It actually looks in nearly new condition now that it's been cleaned up.
Con: it will need some adjusting for a perfect fit for Bridget, possibly adding a bit of gusseting.
Pro: The tree shape is perfect for her, and we have an excellent master saddler available to work on it. It fits well enough to use as is for the summer. Also, it cost only half of my desired budget so I don't mind spending a bit on it.
Con: It's a hunter saddle.
Pro: It's the right shape for me. And master saddler can add the blocks I've become accustomed to from our xc saddles. Also, who am I kidding...we don't need a xc saddle to go Starter.
Con: Seats were hard back then!
Pro: It fits right...and my last jump saddle was a Stubben. Also, I have plenty of my own padding ;) I can cope with a hard seat.
Con: the two tone color. Icky, my least favorite.
Pro: It fits. Also, I have a matching lovely quality, but icky colored bridle I may need to embrace, thereby possibly portraying confidence in the awesomeness of orange tack :)
Con: It's a true XW jump saddle with short rider dimensions. I expect resale would not be easy.
Pro: it's a unicorn saddle and I plan to use it until it dies.