66 Art of Travel.
the goodness of the animal who carries them. English saddlers never, I believe, can be induced to stuff a saddle sufficiently; because they have no opportunity of seeing the miserable, scraggy condition of a travelled horse's back, to which it is destined to fit. But an English saddle, restuffed at a bush frontier town, is excellent.
Three rings, and nine of what saddlers call "D's," should be fixed to the saddle, not simply into the leather-work, but firmly riveted or secured into the tree itself. This must be especially insisted on, or frequent disasters will occur. The three rings are to be fixed to the pommel-one on the top, and one on each side of it ; the nine " D's" are placed as follows:-three along the back of the saddle, two more on each side of the seat, and two in front, for the breastplate.
Fittings.-To these may be tied a light valise in front ; a gun-holster on the right of the pommel ; and a small bagcontaining odds and ends, gunpowder, spare bullets, a few presents, &c.-on its left. On the right of the seat, a sabretasch, or thin leather portfolio-shaped pocket, for paper and writing materials ; on the left, the water-canteen and hobbles; behind, the crupper and small saddle-bags. A breastplate is not worth having, except in a very hilly country. This description of a saddle, of course, applies to that of the travelling-horse. For the saddle of the shooting-horse the arrangement is different ; only the gun-holster, and perhaps the water-canteen can then be taken. An ox carries a saddle precisely like a horse. I rode mine nearly 1600 miles, in South Africa, with a common hunting-saddle and its ordinary girths.
In default of riding-saddles, a pack-saddle must be cushioned to form a comfortable seat (see "Pack-saddles ").
Saddle-bags are so troublesome to open, and require so many straps, that I believe it is best to use a bag of macintosh or canvas, rolled up and tied behind the saddle, where it should rest on a pad. The pad is made of two cushions, each 9 inches long and 4 broad, sewn on a piece of leather, lying parallel to one another, and 4 inches apart. The space between the cushions corresponds to the backbone of the