B of Auf der Autobahn wants to know what tack we can’t live without. You want me to talk about tack? Twist my arm. Not only do I have a tack trunk, I have a tack locker, wherein my beloved saddle and strap goods live, along with some boots and wraps. Two bridles, two halters, standing and running martingales, two breastplates, draw reins, three girths, polos, track bandages, bell boots, hind boots, fronts boots … all for ONE horse. Plus there’s a stud chain, chain twitch (that I haven’t used in years and haven’t ever used on Eli), spurs, tack cleaning goop, clippers, lead ropes … After riding for about 30 years, I have amassed enough tack for about a dozen horses. I’ve owned four horses, given away or sold a lot of tack, and only own Eli right now. I still have four Rubbermaid tubs full of tack in storage. I have about a dozen bits, too. I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT ANY OF IT. I need it all. No, really!
My tack trunk has a bunch of stuff in it, too, including a longe line, various bottles of goop, my groom box, and a tray that houses gloves, bonnets, and other odds and ends.
Last, my saddle. Oh, saddle. I bought it very well-used in 1998, and it needs a new seat and full re-flock. But I love it. And it fits Eli pretty well, considering I bought it to fit a different OTTB that it fit extremely well. The seat has a huge tear on the left near the pommel. And, yeah, no knee pads, but the saddle does have knee blocks. My saddle has seen better times. Lots of better times. It holds a great deal of sentimental value for me. I will never sell it, but I will get it repaired and re-flocked eventually. That being said, I do hope to get a new saddle. And here’s what I would love:
My current saddle is also a Delgrange, similar to a PJ Lite but made before the PJ line. Sadly, PJ and Delgrange have parted ways, but the above saddle, I’m told, is most similar to a PJ Lite. The current PJ saddles are not of the same quality, nor are they made in France. I am also looking at the Beval Natural, Antares, or buying used. Voltaire saddles have piqued my interest, but a new one is out of my price range. And I absolutely will not buy a saddle that doesn’t come with a trial period and clearly-spelled-out return policy.
Last, Eli’s figure-8 is cobbled together from parts of about 4 different bridles. I want to get him one of his very own, and I’m thinking it could be this one: