And in this article, I’ll explain the different types of horse saddles so that you can decide which saddle is best for your horse and your riding needs.
Different Types Billy Cook Saddles
Horse saddles are made with specific uses in mind. You wouldn't buy a show saddle, which is used in competitions, when you really need a horse saddle that will allow you to work on a ranch trying to steer cows, would you? Of course not.
You need to buy the right saddle for the right purpose. But what if you don't know the purpose of different saddles? Below are the different types of Billy Cook Saddles.
Billy Cook has masterfully crafted the following type of saddles:
Billy Cook All-Around Saddle – An All-Around saddle is ideal for a wide range of work around the ranch. The seat is flatter to allow movement and easy adjustment for the rider. The seating is often padded with suede. Often close contact skirting to help in giving leg cues. Reinforced rigging for light roping, made from strong wooden tree. Strong horn, made high for holding on.
Billy Cook Trail and Pleasure Saddles – If you go for long horse rides in all sorts of conditions, this is the saddle for you. This saddle is usually built with a lightweight tree, is not designed for heavy ranch work and comes in large varieties. This saddle is designed with higher and lower cantle.
A higher cantle gives you more protection, while a lower cantle gives you more comfort. Because of the stress put on the saddle, rigging is usually in-skirt. It’s also equipped with lots of leather ties to attach your gear.
Billy Cook Barrel Saddles – If you’re looking to leave your competition in the dust, this saddle is designed for elite speed. Designed with high cantle with deep pocket seat to hold the rider in. High horn, shorter skirts and in-skirt rigging.
Mounted Shooting Barrel Saddles – For quick draw and stability. This saddle is designed with a high cantle for extra security, a forward tilted swell, suede seats to hold you in place, roughout fenders and jockeys for extra stability. Best of all, it’s light weight.
Billy Cook Cutting Saddles – Cutting is the art of separating a cow, steer or calf from the larger herd. If you’re working on a farm or ranch, this saddle is designed to keep you balanced and out of the way of the horse during sharp starts and stops and turns.
This saddle is designed with a low cantle, high pommel and horn. The seat is flatter with a slight rise at the pommel. Jockeys and fenders often designed from rough out leather for better grip. Reinforced rigging, back cinch and slim stirrups and has leather wear strap between fenders and bottom skirt.
Endurance Saddle – This type of saddle is designed with a very comfortable seat for long-endurance rides. It’s small and lightweight with lots of stings for attaching gear. Most don’t have a horn. In order to keep the saddle from tipping this saddle is designed with center-fire rigging.
Billy Cook Ranch Saddles – This saddle is for ranch work. It’s big and heavy, the seat is slick and hard for comfortable day long use. It’s designed with high cantles and back straps. And it’s made from sturdy tree for rigorous ranch work.
Billy Cook Reining Saddle – This saddle is designed with close contact saddle with skirts to allow the rider to communicate with the horse easily while performing complicated maneuvers during reining pattern. The horn and pommel are lower for ease of movement of reins without interference. Flatter seat for hip movement.
Billy Cook Roping Saddle – Best for roping (as opposed to recreational riding). Made from an extremely sturdy wood tree with bullhide, rawhide, or very strong fiberglass covering. It’s designed to take the abuse of holding a calf.
To reduce the stress to the horse’s back, this saddle is made with a wide gullet. The low cantle and shallow seat enables the rider to quickly dismount during ranch work or competition. Reinforced rigging attached to tree. Seats are suede and padded.
Billy Cook Show Saddle – Not good for every day riding. But is very good for competing. It’s a very detailed saddle. Detailed tooling. It comes with silver on the skirts, cantle, pommel, horn and stirrups.
Seat is balanced and has pocket to keep the rider in the proper position. Turned up stirrups, padded sued seats. Often close contact with lower pommel and horn for better cues to your horse and rein control.
Training Saddle – This saddle is designed with reining saddle type tree. It has low pommels and cut out skirts for close contact with your horse. Designed with lots of dees and rings to attach training devices or aids. Padded suede seats; fenders and jockeys are roughout leather for better grip.
The Billy Cook Wade Ranch Arbuckle Saddle
I recently had the pleasure to ride with a Billy Cook Wade Ranch Arbuckle western saddle, and after two days of riding I'm quite sure that this was the most comfortable saddle I've ever used.
As with most of Billy Cook saddles, the Wade Ranch was built for those who ride long hours. When you first look at this saddle, the craftsmanship is obvious from the 4-inch horn to the deep seat. The fine leather is decorated with a waffle pattern around the border, and smooth hand-worked leather lines the split ranch seat.
No Dry Spots on Horse’s Withers
The rigging is made up of flat plate brass hardware, and holds a 27-strand mohair cinch. The tree is made up of Wade rawhide covered full quarter horse wide bars. After a full day's ride there were no noticeable dry spots on my horse's withers which only attests to the great fit this saddle has to the horse.
This is especially true on wide backed horses. The fenders are pre-turned, which cuts down on the breaking-in time required with a new saddle. The stirrups are 3 inches wide and covered with rawhide, which protected me from wear and tear on my shins, which usually occurs with a new saddle.
Well Crafted Seat
At 42 pounds, this saddle is heavy, which attests to the craftsmanship put into it. The deep seat kept me well balanced and in position throughout the day. This saddle also helped my horse from tiring as the day wore on.
In addition, because we were on some very narrow trails, my horse was able to concentrate on the trail ahead. Even on the second day, my horse did not shy away from the saddle when it came time to get back to the trails in the morning.
This only proves to me that the horse liked the saddle as much as I did.
Plenty of Straps
The saddle also contains plenty of straps for tying on bedding or saddlebags. The flank strap was wide and correctly positioned for my quarter horse. I really cannot find anything to complain about in the saddle.
Because of the high quality craftmanship, I believe my Billy Cook Saddle is going to last me a lifetime. I’m looking forward to buying a Billy Cook Saddle for myself. My son has become quite the horsemen himself. I know when I am gone, he’ll have fine memories of me when he rides in one of these Billy Cook saddles.
What's your favorite horse saddle brand? Have you bought a Billy Cook saddle? What's your experience? Please leave your comments below!