Autumn is the optimal season for riding. Kids are back in school. Bugs are nearly gone. Foliage is beautiful and falling (which makes visibility better). Riders and horses are likely in the best shape of the year.
It’s also a great time to remind readers of some of our favorite items for the trail.
In the saddlebag:
An Adventure Medical first aid kit. The New Hampshire–based company makes perfect tiny kits that fit anywhere. Also consider their bigger, more comprehensive
kits. Our favorite? Me and My Workin’ Dog kit.
A Gerber camp saw or folding saw. Both are great for taking care of deadfall and taking care of smaller trees that stand in the way of a good time and clear sailing. We like the Myth folding saw and the Freescape camp saw.
Kate’s Real Food trail snacks. The yummiest in the bar category. Kate’s have seeds, nuts, honey, oats, and chocolate. All good. All the time. Our favorite is the Grizzly Bar, with peanut butter, dark chocolate, and nine grams of protein.
EcoLips lip balm. This Iowa company makes organic lip balm with simple and edible ingredients. That’s right: you could eat your EcoLips lip balm if you really wanted to (or had to). Create your own custom lip balms here.
Patagonia’s Alpine Houdini will take up less space than a banana and will keep you invaluably dry if you get caught in the rain. Read review here.
Darn Tough, a charter sponsor of the BestHorsePractices Summit, makes some of the best socks on the planet. Their Merino wool socks keep you warm on cold days and cool on hot ones. Read this testimonial from a Darn Tough convert.
Cotopaxi is a new Utah company with some great items for riders. Check out their Barn Coat (a favorite of the NickerNews team), the Kusa jacket (with llama fibers for warmth) and the Altiplano vest. A percentage of every purchase goes to help projects in developing countries.
Fringe leggings. Kathy Threlfall is a pro at crafting beautiful chinks, chaps, and armitas. Each pair is made for your custom fit – from fringe length to special tooling. You can qualify to win a free pair of Fringe leggings. Click here.
Kershaw knives. The Onion series of knives from this Oregon company is hands-down the best line of knives for horse owners. We feel horse owners and riders should always, always, always carry a knife. The Leek and Chive are especially attractive for us ladies; they are strong, easy to handle, and have sleek, unobtrusive styling. Read review.
On Your Horse:
Knotty Girlz gear. The Washington company knows rope and knows rope halters and lines. Owned by Robyn D , Knotty Girlz
has an outstanding selection of halters, ropes, mecate reins, and more. You can outfit your equine in dazzling or conservative colors. Each one feels wonderful in your hands. Read more here.
5 Star Pads. We’ve been using 5 Star pads for many years and our horses have never had a single sore. Heck, Ben Masters and his team traveled from the Mexican to the Canadian border using 5 Star pads and never had any rubs or soring. Hard to beat. All pads are made in Hatfield, Arkansas. Check ’em out.
Outfitters Supply. If you need any item for the trail, chances are this Columbia Falls, Montana company has it. We particularly love the Calvalry saddle bags (handmade in Montana) and the saddle bags for English saddles.
Trailering? Consider these tips from our partner, Bobby Fantarella at Elm City Trailer. He weighs in here, too. And give your horses hay in the best slow-feeder Hay Pillow, on the ground or secured in a trailer.