You won't find a better Decker pack saddle anywhere - packers, guides, and outfitters who have used our Deckers won't have anything else. Regardless of the options you choose, you can pack in confidence knowing you will receive a quality saddle that will offer years of use, made in our Columbia Falls, Montana shop. Build the saddle that will work best for you using the information provided below. As always, feel free to contact us if you have any questions!
TrailMax Traditional and Modified Trees: We developed the TrailMax Decker Pack Saddle Tree and feel that it is without question the best tree available. The bars are molded from virtually indestructible high-strength polymer, and will endure a lifetime of hard packing. The barsare shaped in the traditional O.P. Robinette style and fit most horses and mules extremely well. The ¾" stainless steel arches are attached to the bars using threaded inserts that are permanently molded into the bars. There are six bolts per iron, rather than four, for optimal stability and strength. We use only high quality stainless steel for our arches, for strength and resistance to rust and pitting. The arches are tall enough on either style to easily allow ropes to pass through and make storage a breeze. The traditionally styled tree is ideal for mantied loads and using panniers with Decker hooks. The modified tree has shaped arches that can be used for hanging panniers as you would do on crossbucks on a sawbuck pack saddle.
SW Cottonwood Tree: A solid cottonwood tree that is manufactured in Montana. The old style Decker hoops made from ¾" cold rolled steel are constructed to stand just a bit taller than standard saddles so even when your ropes are stowed, you still have plenty of room to fit your hands in while saddling, hanging panniers, etc. The hoops are attached with flathead stainless steel screws that are countersunk and fastened to the bars with a recessed T-nut. The countersunk holes in the underside of the bar are then filled with all-weather wood filler, sanded and finished with linseed oil.
Canvas and Leather Half-Breed: Our Classic half-breed is made from 24oz. canvas, reinforced with top-quality latigo leather and stuffed with one inch of Duratex synthetic padding to help absorb the pressure of the load. The edges and arch slots are bound and reinforced with heavy latigo leather for additional durability, and a one by four pine bar on each side of the half-breed spreads the weight of the packs across the pack animal's ribs. Weighs 7.7 lbs.
TrailMax Mesh Half-Breed: Very lightweight and breathable! Our TrailMax half-breed has a double layer of tough Textilene mesh with hogshair padding behind the boards; both materials allow air flow to the animal. Bound and reinforced with 4-way nylon webbing. Pine boards help distribute the weight of the load. Weighs 5.5 lbs.
RIGGING STRAPS, SPIDER, BREECHING & BREASTCOLLAR:
Deluxe Leather and Hardware: We handpick and cut the leather for our straps from Hermann Oak Old World Harness leather, the very best available. The saddle has adjustable single rigging; buckles on the tree allow you to place the rigging in the best spot for your animal. Rigging straps are 1-1/4", all other straps are a full 1" wide. We provide roller buckles for easy adjustment on the on-side quarter straps and Conway buckles on all other straps for plenty of adjustment.The leather breeching and breastcollar are doubled and stitched with rolled edges to help eliminate chafing. Our breeching, breastcollar and all straps are well stitched and riveted with heavy copper rivets for extra durability. The hardware is stainless steel for ultimate strength and durability.
Economy Leather and Hardware: We handpick and cut the leather for our straps from premium US tanned heavy harness leather. The saddle has adjustable single rigging; buckles on the tree allow you to place the rigging in the best spot for your animal. Rigging straps are 1-1/4", all other straps are a full 1" wide. We provide roller buckles for easy adjustment on the on-side quarter straps and Conway buckles on all other straps for plenty of adjustment. The leather breeching and breastcollar are handcrafted of heavy single ply leather, with the edges hand beveled to reduce chafing. The hardware is nickel plated steel.
The pack saddles are sold ready to pack with two latigos and a Mohair/wool pack cinch.
Specify a cinch length, even sizes 24" - 36" (average pack mules and horses generally take a 28" cinch).