To help you hit the trail prepared, here is a list of saddlebag items that will handle most minor circumstances.
Deciding what you pack in your saddlebag is a matter of personal preference & necessity, the items listed here is what I consider essential good to have with you on the trail.
You want to make sure you know where you are going, so a trail map is first and foremost. Some people prefer a printed map and others like to have their map on their phone. I believe it is best to have both. While it is nice to have the map on your phone with GPS, your phone battery can go dead and some apps need cellular service to work. I do not have to tell you that horse trails can be remote and not have cell service. When service is spotty, your phone works harder to find a signal which in turn drains your battery. You want to have a printed map if that happens. Additionally, a compass so if you do happen to get misplaced, you know what direction you are heading.
I like to carry baling twine and/or leather laces. They can serve as a temporary repair for tack breakage until you get back to the trailer. An extra set of reins can be very handy too in case a pair breaks and in a pinch be used as a tourniquet.
Carrying a hoof pick is a must, in case you need to remove a stone or other foreign matter from one of your horse’s hooves. Packing a hoof boot if your horse loses a shoe makes sense, but if you do not have room in your saddlebag for one, you can substitute duct tape for a hoof boot!
Bringing a halter and lead rope is handy to have with you. You will need them to tie off your horse if you plan to stop for a rest and have lunch or a snack. It is not safe to tie your horse with your bridle reins.
I like to bring branch trimmers and a folding saw with me in case they are needed.
Other standard items you should have are:
Basic First Aid items are also essential for horse and human, carry non-stick gauze pads, antibiotic ointment or spray and vet wrap. Include Bute or Banamine paste for your horse.
Remember your camera and treats for your horse too!
It seems like a lot of items for your saddlebag, but believe me they will fit.
If you want to print our saddlebag checklist, click here. What items do you like to take in your saddlebag?
Dianne – Trail Rider’s Path