In the July print issue, Tom and Tad Knowles of Colorado’s Wildflower Saddles & Tack in Elizabeth explained how to replace broken saddle strings or add strings to decorative conchas. Strings are great for tying gear onto your saddle, but also can be used to make equipment repairs, if necessary, when you’re on the trail or working cattle and can’t get back to the barn immediately.

Bitmakers Greg Darnall and Ernie Marsh agree there’s nothing wrong with using vintage or antique spade bits. The market for the better-made bits by known makers has exploded in recent years. And a person might find that his prized Guadalupe Garcia, Raphael Gutierrez or Al Tietjen bit has become too valuable to use on a regular basis.

In the November 2003 issue of Western Horseman, I provided tips on how to negotiate various trail terrain. To further prepare you for the trail, I offer tack-selection tips in this exclusive online article.


Winning eight Women's Professional Rodeo Association world championships wasn't a fluke for Arizona roper Kim Williamson. The all-around cowgirl has claimed championships in calf roping, team roping heading, team roping heeling and breakaway roping. She's also won the WPRA's all-around crown.