Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ranch horse tack

Tack requirements for the AQHA Versatility Ranch Horse division call for clean working tack without excessive silver.  All of the horses showing in this event at the National Western Stock show wore a double rigged Western saddle with a breastplate, protective leg gear and a Western bridle with curb bit. 
A few of the riders used Wade type saddles...
but the majority opted for a modern type competition saddle.
Although silver plates were conspicuously absent, not all these saddles were "plain." 
A few were lighter in color...
but most sported a darker, lived in shade.
Bridles showed a bit more variation, ranging from basic...
to rawhide decorated...
to silver trimmed!  
Both one ear and browband styles were well represented, and contestants were similarly split in their choice of reins.  Roughly half the class used split reins...
while the rest chose romals, both with...
and without rein chains.
Although I don't have photographic evidence of this fact, it's worth mentioning that horses five years and under are permitted to show with a bosal or snaffle.  


  1. thats the kind of horse showing I plan to do :)

  2. Good for you! I am a hunter rider currently taking dressage lessons so Versatility Ranch Horse is WAY outside my riding experience. Still, I have to say--I just love this event. I love any event where the goal is a well trained, good minded, sound and happy horse.

  3. Nice pics, Jennifer!

    Do you know what's going on with the breastplate in this picture? It looks like it's attached to the shoulders somehow?

  4. Actually, I do. That's a pulling style breastcollar. The tug straps wrap through the saddle's swells rather than attaching to the saddle's d's. The theory is that this type of collar allows the horse more freedom of motion in his shoulders and better leverage when pulling.

  5. I have not tried a pulling style breastcollar I will have a look at it. What are the benefits of this style of breastcollar.

    Anything Equine

  6. Saddles should be comfortable for horse and rider. I also buy ranch saddles from Morning Homestead.