Deciding on which are the best roping saddles to purchase comes with far more things to consider than purchasing a trail or pleasure saddle. The amount of pressure, jerking, and pulling that a roping saddle goes through on a day to day basis means it needs to be strong, sturdy, and tough if it is going to last. Quality saddles will remain intact under all of the ware and tare ropings puts on them, while saddles of lesser quality will not hold up. Seems will come apart, leather will split, horns have been known to pop off, and the saddle tree can shatter, crack, and even split. So take time to find the best quality saddle that fits within your budget.
Choosing the Best Roping Saddles
Roping steers and calves on the ranch happens daily for most cowboys. Roping puts a lot of stress and wear and tear on equipment. The best roping saddles on the market are made of high-quality suede or rough-out leather, have tall thick horns, often covered with rubber, full double riggings, and rope straps.
The best roping saddles will be very strong and will hold up to the strong jerks and pulls of roped livestock. Roping saddles are much heavier than other western saddles. The heavyweight, proper seat shape to keep the rider in the saddle, and oxbow stirrups essential pieces that make the best roping saddles. The best roping saddles will last a long time, so pick a quality made saddle that is more expensive over one that is average and priced lower.
If you don’t struggle a little bit when you’re throwing the saddle on your horse, you can bet it’s far too light to be strong enough for this job. A solid saddle is mandatory for roping, and that means the saddle will have weight to it. The tree is far more durable than those of other saddles, leather is thicker, and the horn is tall wide, and reinforced with leather and sometimes rubber is even added to it. So don’t fall for any roping saddle that is not a bit heavy.
Other Things to Look Out for
Take a good look at where the fenders attach to the tree, you want to make sure they are centered straight down from the seat so you have the ideal seat and leg position. Fenders that a too far forward or too far back will make it hard for you to balance in the saddle and stay centered in the saddle and over your horses.
Remember to take a good look at the riggings for the cinch and back cinch. Make sure the front rigging is set so the cinch will fall just behind the shoulder. When it is placed more forward, closer to the front of the skirt you run the chance of pinching the shoulder and limiting the horses’ movement. The rigging for the back cinch should be set in the center of the skirt that is behind the fender and the back corner of the saddle skirt. The back cinch should go under the back portion of the horse’s belly, and should not be set too far back that it can come into contact with the flanks. For safety don’t forget to attach the front and back cinch together so (back of the front cinch and front of the back cinch) so they stay together.
Break-In a Quality Roping Saddle
Another important thing to remember is that sometimes the best saddles take time to break-in. Going for the saddle that is already soft and supple might be more comfortable to start with but it may also be more far more expensive. Leather that is thicker and not yet as pliable as you would like, with time will break in and you can get the leather feel we all know and love. With some saddle soap and leather conditioner, you can get that same supple leather in a few weeks and you will save a few hundred dollars on your purchase.
Purchasing a roping saddle is different than purchasing other saddles. This is an event-specific saddle. Although roping saddles can be used for other styles of riding, the primary purpose is to be used for roping. The horn, cantle, seat shape, leather type, and other things will be much different than those found on other western saddles.
Top Picks for the Best Roping Saddles
This is a great choice if you want a quality saddle that is budget-friendly. Constructed with a sturdy rawhide covered wood tree, this saddle will withstand the hard jerks and pull when roping livestock. The seat on this saddle is designed with a deep-set pocket to help keep the roper centered when leaving the box and offering them additional balance. This will give the rider a solid advantage during competition.
Handcrafted to offer the most comfortable saddle for the horse with full quarter horse bars for freedom of movement and comfort during hard turns and fast starts and stops. This saddle is not designed only for the comfort of the rider but for the horse as well. If the saddle is not the proper fit your horse will not perform as well as expected. So fitting the saddle to the horse is a top priority with this maker.
- Hand Crafted offering superior comfort.
- Designed specifically for ropers.
- Five-year warranty on tree and other hardware.
- Takes a while to break in.
- Horn needs to be wider so it won’t break when jerked on
- Stirrups are difficult to remove feet from quickly.
The Ranch Roping Cowboy Saddle by Hilason is made with high-quality genuine leather. This saddle is made for hard work. The saddle is created with an extra-strong tree designed to stand up to daily ranch work and the impact that saddles take when being used for roping calves and livestock.
The tree for this saddle is designed to last under the added pressure created from roping. The double rawhide wrapped tree is one of the strongest on the market. Hilason roping saddle comes with a five-year warranty against damages that reduce the structural soundness of the tree.
The rough-out leather seat and 4.5-inch cantle are designed to help keep the rider centered in the saddle and reduces slipping and sliding around. A 7-inch gullet and full quarter horse bars will fit a variety of horses so you won’t be left with a saddle that only fits one horse. This saddle is well made and also comes with a price that many will be able to fit into their budget.
- Fantastic fit for both horse and rider.
- Wonderful quality and affordable price.
- Very comfortable for long days in the saddle.
- Some of the screws came out, they were not the proper screws to use for saddle making.
- Not all leather is tanned the same so color was not the same throughout the entire saddle.
- Seat sizing runs small.
Purchasing a saddle is very exciting. It may be hard to decide on what type of saddle you want or on the saddle is made by, but in the end, finding something that fits both you and your horse and is made well, should be put at the top of your saddle purchase list.
Roping saddles should not be put in the same category as other saddles. Roping saddles need to be made with a more durable tree for a base, stronger leather that can withstand the pull of a rope, the jerk of a steer, and hold up against a slash from a bull’s horn.
Do the research on what you should be looking for in a roping saddle, so you don’t overlook anything that is specifically designed for the sport. Purchasing a saddle is an investment that can last you a long time, so don’t break the bank on the purchase but you should also spend that little bit extra for the increased quality.