This feedback is taken from customer emails (with their permission) but as most people just ring for a chat it is only occasionally I manage to get written feedback.  I really appreciate it when they do smiley


August 2017

Hi Jacalyn,

I received the saddle pad yesterday and I LOVE IT!!!

Thank you very much, its of fantastic quality, never touched felt that soft and fine before!!

Cheers Corinna


Pad arrived today. Thank you so much. Looks super on him, fits perfectly. I'll send u a pic when I get a good one. I Love it. 

Thank you.

Kind regards


PS  It's actually exciting receiving something of quality and specially made too. 

July 2017

Thanks Jacalyn for your help fitting my new saddle the shimming worked a treat. Really enjoying the saddle nice and comfortable and Bailey seems happy.  Leonie - Te Awamutu


May 2017


Good morning Jacalyn,

Just writing to let you know I love the new saddle and I will keep it!

It is a fantastic fit on my horse and it is not only very comfortable it also fits my bum like a glove. My green and very late cut gelding can be a bit of a bronc when he feels too full of himself and this saddle gives me a very deep and secure seat!

Thank you very much, I'm very impressed! I can already say for sure that this wont be my last saddle I buy of you (I got some young horses coming up).

Looking forward to dealing with you again in future!

Cheers C Kaitaia


March 2017

22nd March  

Hi Jacalyn,

Sorry for taking so long to send a message through, as you probably guessed the saddle is absolutely fantastic and we have spent quite some time in it now. Plenty of people have asked me about it on the treks and I'm always pointing them in your direction :)

I'd just like to say that they are extremely well priced, beautiful quality and very well made saddles that are built to last. The design is well thought out and they are extremely comfortable to ride in.

Thank you for the saddle. 

Kind regards

Nina  - Te Puke


19th March   

Hi Jacalyn, really loving my saddle. Rode in it all week down south and my horse showed no signs of any pain and I come off pretty good too lol.

Cheers  Lonnie - Ahipara


5th March  

Hi guys, just finished the Cavalcade, the first one in a High Country Saddle. Amazing. Can't rate it highly enough. Very happy customer so just thought I'd pass along a bit of positive feedback. Hope all is well with your team at High Country Saddles. 

Regards, Natasha  Wallacetown    (Natasha purchased a 14.5" Medium Wide Molesworth with short fenders and twisted stirrups)


September 2016

Hi Jacalyn

Thank you for all your help last Sunday. Have spent a few days in the saddle this week on both my horses and i couldn't be happier with it. Fits both horses really well and great to ride in. 

Thanks again,



June 2016

Hi Jacalyn

Thought I’d flick you an update.

Well, a successful weekend. My saddle blanket arrived on Friday and is beautifully made. With the new blanket and shims the saddle is balanced and fitting well.  In total Kiwi spent about 6-7hrs in her saddle over the weekend with no issues at all.

I fitted the shims with Velcro and that is working well.

I did lots of work on her extending in the trot and engaging her core on-line with her saddle on as well as ridden arena work and she didn’t miss a beat J. She got hot and sweaty, probably the most work she has done under saddle since I have had her- and she was really happy, settled and attentive.

My nervous 11yr old was happy to ride with no reins in the arena and said that he felt so safe and happy in the saddle- and I certainly agree with him.

As an aside, I have never been able to mount Kiwi from the ground but over the weekend I did so 8-10 times easily (well relatively easily!- my muscles are paying for it now though!!). I can also ride while standing in the saddle which I couldn’t do in my Wintec.

I gave my saddle a good clean and oil on Sunday night and it looks like new again.

Hope all is well with you.

Best wishes

L   (L bought a 13.5”  MW Kaimanawa.  Her pony had proved very difficult to fit with a saddle since purchase but with a good wool felt pad and judicious shims to fill the small pockets behind her shoulders, we managed to make both horse and rider very comfortable, which was a great success ) 

April 2016

Graham and Julie Thompson  Papamoa

 Hi Jacalyn

We want to thank you for the time you have spent both coming out to help with saddle fitting and then time spent answering the many questions and viewing photos and the advice you have been able to give us as a result  - has all been very much appreciated.

Thank you for being able to trial the saddle also, and for your genuine desire to find what suits both horse and rider...and for having such a lovely product available for us here in New Zealand.  It has been a lot of hard work on your part, for which we are grateful.

One happy, comfortable Husband and Horse combo - in their brand new Kaimanawa Saddle and one very lucky wife who has a hubby that genuinely enjoys his new found hobby.

We are looking forward to our rides... "off into the sunset" .....   together!

All  the best down there in Taupo...catch up again sometime.

March 2016

I recently purchased a molesworth saddle from you.  I have been riding since I was 4 and now am on the wrong side of 50 and I have never felt so safe in a saddle as I do in this one (not to mention how comfortable it is).  You went out of your way to accommodate what I ;needed before I purchased the saddle and have followed up to make sure I am totally happy with the purchase.  Thank you so much.

Anne Williams
Hi Jacalyn

A note of gratitude for all your assistance and genuine interest in what I am trying to achieve as a novice rider.

From the little riding I had done I knew that an English saddle was not really right - but neither was the Western that I had tried a couple of time - so what direction?
I firstly came across your website and it is filled with great information that's really helpful in understanding what this 'half-breed' saddle is (as well as host of other questions that I had but for which answers were never obvious from anywhere else).  Your follow up to my initial contact was prompt and even more helpful.  Much of our contact was during your South Island trip and service included stopping off on your way back to Taupo for a saddle fitting (and mini-riding lesson for me...).
The workmanship and quality of leather and fittings on my Kaimanawa is outstanding.  Everyone who has seen it comments on how good it looks, how well it is made and how comfortable it must be.  I can certainly attest to the looks and quality, and the saddle is giving me more confidence to tackle a lot more riding!

Thanks for everything,
Martin  Sheffield  Raumati


February 2016


Just to say thank you for your patience and knowledge when helping me to make my young girl a happy girther (though not smiling in the photo) I can assure you her intolerance to being girthed was quickly resolved once fitted with a High County half breed saddle.
For me personally it was a huge change cominging from the UK your saddle design is so comfortable and secure putting me in the European position that I am used to.
See you in Roxburgh
Many thanks Julie (Oamaru)

November 2015

Having purchased a new horse, the next step was a saddle. I had been riding my previous horse in a borrowed Australian-style stock saddle, which I loved and found very comfortable and secure. BUT it didn't fit my new boy at all. Searching the internet I found the High Country Saddlery website and was instantly taken with the style of the halfbreed saddles. So I contacted Jacalyn and our mission began! 
It's not easy fitting a saddle from a different island, and wither tracings, many photos and phone calls later the first one arrived. Uh-oh. This didn't feel right. It fit the horse well, but not the rider. Was it the fender position? More phone calls, (including questions about the shape of my lower spine and length of leg,) emails and photos and a different sized saddle was on the way down.  No, fenders were fine, the inch bigger seat solved the problem. 
We would have exchanged more than a hundred emails, and there were quite a few long phone calls until the right fit was found. If Jacalyn had been on the ground beside us it would have been obvious what the problem was quite quickly, as it was, her patience and advice and suggestions got us there in the end!   
The Kaimanawa saddle is comfortable, rugged and beautiful to look at and ride in, and Jacalyn's advice, experience and time given willingly made it money very well spent. 
R Payne, Marlborough  

August 2015

The High country saddles are absolutely gorgeous!

Unfortunately I have one of the hardest horses to fit a saddle to. In my quest for making my horse comfortable, I found Jacalyn to be a very knowledgeable,helpful saddle fitter. She leaves no stone unturned whilst tirelessly trying to accommodate every aspect of the horse, rider & matching it to your discipline.

Working within the equine industry I've come across a few saddle fitters & I would have to say that Jacalyn is one of the best & very dedicated to her passion.

Thank you for all your help Jacalyn, very much appreciated.

Kind regards,

Jo Jenner

Bowen Equine Therapy Ltd NZ

July 2015

" I highly recommend High Country Saddles. Jacalyn provides outstanding service and quality saddles giving fantastic advice on saddle fitting for both horse and rider. She makes the process of getting the correct saddle and fit so easy, even from afar! Jacalyn has a great knowledge and passion for the saddles and the service she provides and is there to help whenever you need it. Your advice has been greatly appreciated Jacalyn and it has been a pleasure meeting you.

A huge Thank You to you! :)"     CM  Hawke's Bay



Thankyou Jacalyn & High Country Saddlery

The saddle is awesome & its not been an easy task to find a saddle that works for both me & Betty. Firstly me - im an older rider with a slipped disc (L5) so need comfort & support while trekking & a certain amount of security in a saddle. Now Betty she is a clyde \ standy cross built like a clyde very solid with a sway back, i have a parelli theraflex pad that is shimmed to her but stiil needed a saddle wide enough to fit while still giving her the comfort & support. The wide Kaimanawa meets all the above & more :) it has given me alot more leg contact which was lacking in my western saddle & alot more feel when riding & to top it all off after riding a few hours i got off with alot less stiffness then i would have normally :).

So again Thankyou Jacalyn

Susan Cook

June 2015

Tacky tack pad

I bought a tacky pad a while ago.   I have found the tacky pad absolutely fantastic and does not slip at all.  My horse is very comfortable and not so sweaty under the saddle and it is so much easier to clean than any other pad I have. I am now ordering one for my husband's horse to avoid further fights in the tack room lol.
Sara Roberts
Five Manes Horsemanship Group

Founder of Cowboy Challenge in New Zealand and Co founder of New Zealand Cowboy Challenge Association

March 2015

Hi Jacalyn 
Saddle is fantastic very comfortable and fits horse really well am using with felt pad,seems to be good combo.
Regards  Joe ( Joe Muir is a farmer on Waiheke Island) 24-3

My saddle is awesome!!! It makes for the most comfortable ride and my horse moves beautifully under it even though I am overweight and very unfit! Cant say how thankful I am that I met Jacalyn as I have spent 4 years trying to find a saddle to fit my girl and within a few minutes Jacalyn explained why I was having problems. Now we finally have a well made, well fitting saddle (for both myself and the horse) and I understand how to fit my horse :) Thank you Jacalyn and High Country Saddlery!  Natalie 21-3


Feb 2015

I recently purchased a beautiful Campdrafter Saddle from High Country Saddlery. I have a narrow, high withered mare who has always been difficult to fit and have had many problems with soreness due to this. I'd been trying to find a saddle that incorporated the versatility and fit of a western saddle with the style of a stock saddle without luck, finding that most stock saddles were a poor fit and ended up causing pressure points on my horse and the westerns did not fit her short back and high wither. I was recommended High Country Saddlery by a friend who insisted that their saddles would work for my horse and I. 
Jacalyn has a vast amount of knowledge and took great care in fitting my horse and I to this saddle. She had several options, each as superb as the last, however the Campdrafter was everything I envisioned. I can not wait to get some mileage on it and look forward to a pain free horse!   IJ - Hawke's Bay

October 2014

  • 30-10   After having tried at least a dozen saddles to replace my faithful old Australian Campdrafter I was in despair, thinking my next move was to try Australia. Part of the problem was no one seemed to listen or understand what I was saying. Until I contacted Jacalyn at High Country Saddles. She is excellent to deal with, listens and has a great practical knowledge of saddles and horses. She has made a great effort to provide me with a saddle with which I am very pleased. Quite apart from this, she is one of the few people I have ever come across who can talk sense when it comes to actually measuring saddles!
    Norm from Northland,  who at 66 is still doing stock work on his horses almost every day


  • 27-10  I am absolutely delighted with my new saddle from High Country Saddlery. My horse has a difficult shape, and I have lost count of the number of e-mails and phone calls between myself and Jacalyn as she patiently talked me through all the steps involved in getting the right fit for him. She really goes above and beyond what I expected, and made sure I was confident with my purchase before committing.
    As for the saddle itself - I cannot fault it. It is of brilliant quality, absolutely gorgeous to look at, and most excitingly, it allows my horse and I to feel each other effortlessly, giving him confidence, and leaving my hands free for farm jobs, or photos out on the trail.
    I will be straight back for another when my youngster is ready!
    Thanks heaps,
    Dani                       (Auckland)
  • 1-10  We rode yesterday for the first time since hunting finished.   G loves his new (Kaimanawa) saddle!! We rode for two hours, up and down hill.  His bum and legs are great today, so he’s happy.  Whereas I can hardly sit down.   

August 2014

  • Hi, ride went well. She never humped up or got balky. Cruised downhill no worries. I think the saddle is super comfy! I'm very happy with the saddle, when I unsaddled there were no areas of hair being rubbed, or random patches of sweat. Thank you very much for all you help, Sincerely, N
  • Thanks so much - I will recommend you highly!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Cheers Happy Horse Girl -  :)

July 2014

  • ………I didn't mention how pleased I have been with the saddle. It has been much admired. L
  • This trader was the most loveliest helpful trader ever!! Even when I had to return the item which didn't fit she was totally fine about it and refunded me promptly and offered me special deals on other saddles I may like to try. Wish all traders were this amazing!!! Highly recommend to all.
  • I am sorry to have to return your saddle, I would have loved to purchase a saddle from you as your service has been out standing.
    Many Thanks, K
  • Hi Jacalyn, Had another ride in the saddle today and I'm definitely sold on it!  It put me in a nice comfortable position and allows great movement of your leg! I absolutely love it and i believe freckles does too. She's move freely and is very happy in it! Love the saddle blanket and the girth too. Ive always preferred the wide belly girths and freckles appreciates it as well. If i ever buy a western or another half bred saddle i will be getting it from you!!! So happy :)

June 2014

  • Yes my pony still likes it and so does the TB i now ride as well - no english for me. Much more riding happening now that i am feeling more secure and invincible ........  My pony in all his years has never ever maintained a topline - with this saddle he has one so it pretty much speaks for its self. He even out walked QH up hill in the shit with my weight on him too .....
  • 9-4  After many months searching for a trekking saddle to fit my 16.1hh clydie cross, I am pleased to have found Jacalyn at High Country Saddlery. We have fitted Benson, and me, into a beautiful saddle. I feel so secure and comfortable and most importantly Benson is moving freely and no longer has a sore back from an ill fitting saddle. I have lots of comments on the saddle and happily recommend High Country Saddlery to everyone who asks.
    Trina Crosbie
  • Thanks for all the support, we are learning so much J

November 2013

  • Loving it. Will definitely recommend it to my fellow polox mates. N (Trainer)

October 2013

  • We are so pleased with the saddle you sold Bob and I'm sure Campbell probably sits in his shed stroking his! He reckons it's the best saddle he's ever had!
  • Hi Jacalyn  Have ridden in my new saddle lots of times now and just love it.  Never thought anything would replace my western saddle.  Lots of interest in it from everyone in our trek group. Thanks for all your help and advice.  It was a  pleasure to buy my saddle from you. Must say the decision to contact you in the first place was the fact you are in Taupo. Thanks Leonie and N.

June 2013

  • I have one of these awesome saddles for my 14hh standbreed and its perfect we ride anything from 7k's to 30k rides and as most people know long rides can course stiffness. after my first long 15k ride in the saddle I got I didn't have any issues. I described it as riding in a lazy boy arm chair. I have recommend High Country saddlery to all my friends. I have also had great service and communication with this company, B W 
  • ​The saddles great; thanks heaps.  He's oiled it and it now very soft…..  J & G Whangamata
  • ​​Hi Jacalyn, we did a 20 km endurance ride at Whakaramu yesterday, saddle was great and I felt really secure in my seat………..J - Hamilton
  • Hi there just got the saddle pad yesterday its awesome, went riding today in it and fit her and saddle perfectly, thank you so much :)
  • I'm an adult coming back into riding and have recently purchased a horse.  I had been having difficulty finding the right saddle for my horse -   I was relieved to find out that Jacalyn was willing to provide a saddle fitting service to ensure I made the correct choice for both my horse and I.  In the initial dealings I had with Jacalyn it quickly became clear she is a committed horsewoman, who has the comfort and safety of both the rider and horse at heart - I felt totally confident that Jacalyn wouldn't sell me a saddle purely for the trade.  We worked together to find just the right fit from her range.  I settled on the rough out (the most comfortable saddle I have ever sat in!).  I also purchased a girth, saddle pad and breastplate all at very reasonable prices. Today I have oiled my saddle for the first time, and the rough out leather has come up beautifully - I'm very happy indeed with my purchase!  I recommend High Country Saddlery completely without reserve. warm regards from Kinloch Lou June 2012
  • Hi Jacalyn  Well finally got out for a ride to-day so the saddle is no longer gracing the lounge floor.Found the saddle really comfortable and it put me in the correct riding position, but the biggest thing I noticed was Tussock and how she felt, her trot was much more fluent, and she appeared really happy, so it made for a lovelly ride overall.I look forward to more riding in the future many thanks and I would recommend this saddle to anyone. Thanks Bev June 2012
  • Hi there Jacalyn, This bridle is so beautiful , my Daughter just loves it.. we are gonna try it on now and take a photo for you... thankyou so much. This Bridle just sits so nice on our ponys face.. K’s friend just loved the bridle so i think her mum is gonna buy one too.  L June 2012
  • Bridle arrived fine – Quality was great thanks… Moyra June 2012
  • Hi Jacalyn Just back from a trek down Waitomo - 6 hours on the first day, buggered horse, buggered rider but absolutely rapt with the saddle. She went really well, and considering the terrain we rode over it had a real good test and past with flying colours. Comfy and it never moved on her, I used a bigger western pad and it just lifted it up in the front a bit which was perfect. I've given your cell number to a couple of people and told them how to find you on trade me. If you have any business cards I'd be happy to get them out there wherever I'm trekking. Cheers Dee Tokoroa June 2012
  • I'm so thrilled with my new saddle and the results ive found !- I've always ridden in an English saddle since I was young and never considered anything else.
  • Having not had my own horse for nearly 20 yrs I bought Kingi my 16.2hh Thourghbred gelding last year. I've had a few saddles and initially they seem to fit ok but Kingi didn’t seem to go that well with schooling and sometimes went forward flicking his ears and not wanting to turn on the circle even out hacking he was not moving well. Because of this I made contact with Jacalyn through a recommendation from a friend who had been instructed by her. When Jacalyn came she suggested that I try the stock saddle range. Following on from this I had several sessions with the saddle on a free trial and I immediately felt the comfort for myself and also Kingi moved soo much better - stylish through his paces and happy to turn I've never seen him move so well. It seams to me that the shape of the saddle distributes the riders weight for maximum comfort for him and doesn’t restrict his natural movement. The advice I have been given has been great and it’s the first time I’ve had someone know what they are really talking about when it comes to understanding horses movement and behaviour.
  • The saddle is beautifully made and has so much detailed work on it. 

May 2013

  • This saddle has given me complete confidence from the perspective that because I feel secure, my horse is happy and he's more relaxed and we've made so much progress in the weeks that I have had it - just awesome!!”Jackie D  – May 2012

March 2013

  • Hi there, Got the bridle today I LOVE it!! looks fantastic on an is awesome quality. Thanks so much!  Sharn – March 2012
  • Hi Jacalyn  Hows it going, really love the saddle but it is taking a bit of getting used to, bit different than a flat seat jumping lol.Cheers Pam March 2012