What is a Night Latch - Oh Damn Strap, oh shit strap: A nightlatch is a safety strap attached to a saddle to help you stay on an out of control horse. This contraption was used as part of the traditional cowboy bronc gear and can still come in handy.
You are using the strap to form a loop to grab like a suitcase handle (or bareback rigging).
Maybe you are wondering why use a night latch, when the saddle horn is so handy. With a night latch, you can pull yourself down into the saddle, which gives you greater leverage than holding the horn.
You can try an experiment, next time you are in your saddle. First hold the horn, then grab the lariat rope strap or front saddle strings and pull yourself down, imagining the feeling if your horse were acting up. You should feel more secure.
But remember: the rope strap or saddle strings are too light to serve the real purpose.
3 styles available -
1-3/4" harness leather with plain flat strap.
2-1/2" cotton rope.
3--rolled harness leather hand hold