Dakota Horse Saddles Review: A Solid Affordable Option

By Zunnun Ahmed •  Updated: 07/21/23 •  10 min read

Horse owners put so much effort into finding a saddle tailored to their equine companions.

Ever wonder why?

That’s because an uncomfortable saddle can lead to discomfort, pain, and even long-term damage to a horse’s overall health. A brand that recently made a buzz in the saddle industry named Dakota is a bit on the pricey side but impacts the rider’s experience.

People kept asking me- What’s my thought on this new brand?

Well, a high-quality saddle is not just a one-time investment; it’s a long-term partnership. 

That’s my personal belief. Before commenting on this brand, I decided to try one of their saddles first. At the same time, I researched a lot about their brand history, manufacturing details, and the review of my fellow horse owners.

Now let me show you what I found about Dakota horse saddles.

What is a Dakota horse saddle by the way?

The Dakota Saddlery, the local hero of Ider, Alabama, USA is the proud owner of the Dakota Saddle.

Exact location?

1556 County Road 141 Flat Rock, AL, 35966-8429, United States. 

Premium-quality saddles at an affordable price, that’s their motto (the price range is not that cheap though). Now come to the main point – quality.

Dakota Trail Saddle

Is Dakota Pony saddles good quality?

I would say, Dakota saddles are valued for the price. Great functionality and a mid-priced range are prime features, worth the buck.

And guess what?

They come with 5 years of warranty, ensuring these saddles’ reliability. The horse tacks are well-known for their long-lasting performance and incredible reliability. 

In addition, the after-sales support of Dakota is superb.


Whenever you have a warranty issue, the maker resolves the problem according to the customer’s satisfaction. While all other competitors of Dakota have warranty issues, Dakota efficiently handles the problems.

What materials are Dakota horse saddles made from?

All Dakota horse seats are handcrafted in the USA. Dakota set a new level of standards in the industry regarding saddle quality.

The maker uses high-quality materials and trees while manufacturing the saddle. Also, they add new technology to every model to improve durability and comfort.

How do Dakota horse saddles differ from other saddle brands?

Each brand has some strengths and weaknesses. That’s why I don’t like to say this one is good, others are bad. Rather I try to focus on both sides of the coin.

ParameterDakotaOther saddle brands
ConstructionQuality assured 100%.Handcrafted and Use high-quality materials.Vary from brand to brand. Excellent quality is not guaranteed.
FitProvide a comfortable, secure, and customizable fit for both the rider and the horse.Yes, Different fit options are available, but customization level and attention to fit fail to surpass Dakota.
StyleOffer a variety of traditional and Western-inspired designs.Different brands offer a wide range of styles available, including traditional, Western, English, and specialized disciplines.
PriceMid to higher price range·       Lower-cost entry-level saddles·       High-end premium models

Are Dakota horse saddles comfortable for long rides? And which Dakota saddle is perfect for long rides?

I tried a couple of saddles for a long time.  

Each of them was comfortable. But I think one particular model my horse loved most Dakota Trail Saddle 213. Let me show you the specification of this saddle at a glance-

Here are a few things that make this saddle a good option for a long ride-

Considering all the above features, these Dakota saddles are extremely comfortable for long rides. You will rarely feel discomfort riding horses with Dakota pony seats for an extended period. 

Remember- Long rides can be tough on saddles.

So make sure you choose the saddle made with high-quality materials which can handle wear and tear in the long run.

Are Dakota horse saddles suitable for beginners or more experienced riders?

I would say Dakota tacks are more appropriate for both options for beginners.

Here is why:

Dakota seats come in a comfortable and secure fit. It is pretty handy for beginners to develop a balanced sitting position. For example-

Dakota Custom Haflinger Saddle 2214!

The customizable options for this saddle are fantastic. I was able to choose between 15″ to 17″ seat sizes. So I found the perfect fit for my body. 


The Haflinger-specific tree design provides ample shoulder and wither clearance for my horse. And it gives me freedom of movement.

Do Dakota horse saddles have adjustable features?

Yup, I really appreciate the flexibility in adjusting the stirrup length and the ability to add accessories like D-rings for attaching gear or saddlebags. Have a look at the specifications to get an idea-

Dakota horse saddles

Are Dakota horse saddles suitable for Western riding?

Saddles for western riding have to be of premium quality. 

Thankfully, Dakota manufactures saddles specifically designed for western riding. Saddles from Dakota comes with the below features, helping riders for long western rides. 

A Deep seat

A deeper seat means more significant support. Simultaneously, the deep seat distributes the rider’s weight evenly on the horse’s back so that the horse can move freely during western riding.

High cantle

Generally, a high cantle supports the lower back of the rider. Moreover, riders can have more movement on the saddle. Furthermore, it holds the rider steadily in place, preventing wobbling during western rides. 

Long skirts

Long skirts secure the tack during long rides. It means, that during long western riding, the saddle will stay in its place stably to promote comfort. 

Overall, the construction, adjustability, comfort, etc., make Dakota horse tacks suitable for western riding. 

What about trail riding……Are Dakota horse saddles suitable for trail riding?

Before answering whether the Dakota horse saddle is suitable for trail riding, we need to know the characteristics of trail riding saddles. 

Now, are these features also available in Dakota horse saddles?

Yes, Dakota saddles are lightweight, have cushy seats, are comfortable to ride, and fit precisely on horses’ backs. More importantly, these saddles offer superb stability with the help of a deep seat, higher cantle, and a low horn. 

With all these features, it is evident that Dakota tacks are suitable for trail riding. Even many Dakota users go trail riding for long hours without discomfort. 

I purchased the Dakota Western Trail Saddle during the pandemic. And overall, it has been a great addition to my tack collection. 

Dakota Western Trail Saddle 2212. already has accompanied me on numerous trail adventures. 

The saddle’s semi-quarter horse bars and adjustable rigging options are just great. I feel like it allows me to achieve a secure fit on my horse’s back. 

And guess what?

It doesn’t shift or slide, even during steep inclines or tough terrains.


I appreciate the versatility of the Dakota Western Trail Saddle 2212. The D-rings and ties provide ample attachment points for saddlebags and other gear. And you badly need this for long rides.

How do I choose the right size Dakota saddle for my horse?

Here is what you need to check when buying the right size Dakota saddle for your horse.

Size matters

Wrong-size saddles will never give you the comfort you crave. So make sure it fits well with you and your horse. If needed, take assistance from a skilled saddle fitter to know which one fits your horse. 

Tree size

Generally, tress sizes are: 

Measure the saddle from the cantle to the nail badge on the head. This will help you know the saddle size and width in inches.  


So, Do Dakota horse saddles come with a warranty? Yes, Dakota tacks or saddles offer 5 years of warranty. The most important thing is Dakota provides awesome after-sales support which is really professional. 

What is the price range of Dakota horse saddles?

Usually, the Dakota horse saddle price range is $1,200-$1,500. So, check the price range before adding the saddle to your cart.

Weight – Are Dakota horse saddles lightweight or heavier?

The weight range of a Dakota horse saddle is 25-60 lbs.

Does this weight range make them lightweight? 

Yes. Dakota tacks are lightweight for their innovative construction.

Although lightweight saddles are not a new invention. Dakota uses modern technology and materials to make the saddles lighter. As a result, these saddles offer numerous benefits, such as,

Final verdict….. Are Dakota horse saddles really worthy?

 Dakota Horse Saddles is a solid affordable option for riders looking for attractive designs for short rides or light trail outings. In a nutshell here is my finding-

The Good

The Not-so-Good:

Overall rating: 4.5/5

Zunnun Ahmed

We are a group of horse enthusiasts. We want to provide information and tips to help others learn more about horses, how to care for them, and how to enjoy them.

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