Saddle for Shawn Barrong, from Spokane, WA custom made for his mule. 58 Wade beaver tail buckroll, mule hide horn wrap, fish scale stamping, 1/2 breed, inlaid seat, full cantle back, 5’ over size rawhide cover stirrups.
The Bitterroot Mountain saddle design comes primarily from my experience as an outfitter and packer in the rugged northeastern corner of Oregon and the Bob Marshall Wilderness of Montana. A horseman in those environments doesn't require the weight and bulk of a roping saddle. Convenience and agility are more in order.
Essential. of course, is the best rawhide covered wood tree with the most up-to-date bar design choices. Others may disagree, but I've never seen this construction seriously challenged. Natural materials; wood, rawhide, leather and wool, work best with living, feeling bodies, both horse and human. Parts of the tree are left partially exposed; the cantle back, slick fork and horn, to reduce weight. These areas are protected with 2 coats of marine spar varnish which also enhances the natural color.
The ground seat is the same customer pleasing shape that we hand build into our traditional full covered saddles. The skirts, with their strong, bulk free rigging are of particular interest; each bar is individually covered like a foot in a shoe. The result is a skirt of pleasing but minimalist design with a clear air channel from front to back.
With the Bitterroot Mountain Saddle we applied the best of our experience and ability to exemplify the principle of form follows function. This saddle is light (under 30 pounds depending upon seat size), comfortable for both horse and rider and created specifically for the demands of horsemen and women who want a saddle that is both practical and beautiful.
Call Bob to purchase your own hand made saddle: 406-961-3978
However, We currently have a waiting list.
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Close Up Shots
'We have ridden Bitterroot Mountain Saddles on both our horses and our mules for the past fourteen years. Our riding has included lots of day rides, several clinics and many weeks of pack trips in the Bitterroot-Selway and Anaconda-Pintler Wilderness. The saddles have been a constant source of pleasure. They are durable, comfortable for both us and our animals, lightweight and totally functional. It is also like riding a work of art, which is kind of nice.
Thanks again for the great work, '
Jim and Carol Hansen - Hamilton, MT'