Tribal / Elemental / Dragon Grandmasteries
When you near level 50 you’ll be able to receive a quest to learn one of the three masteries. Each of these masteries have different benefits, but once you have learned one, you will no longer have the option to choose the other two, so you must make your decision wisely.
Elemental Leatherworking Mastery
Elemental deals with creating armor that allows for sometimes high agility and resistances to certain elements, ie: water, fire, etc. Though at the lower levels elemental resistances are not an important factor, trust me when I say you’ll want high fire resistances in the high level instances. The first recipe Helm of Fire gives 17 agility, 10 stamina and 5 fire resistance. Oh, and it also shoots a fireball at monsters upon use (which is just odd). I choose this line, but outside of the Helm of Fire (which I used till level 60) and the Volcanic Leggings I’ve not had much of a use for it. Perhaps they’ll either add recipes to existing areas or new recipes will drop once new content has been discovered?
Also, to gain the items needed to create Elemental gear, you’ll need to kill Elementals (no shit?), which can be a pain. The problem is: these materials are often used by smiths to create some high level weapons, so it’s not as easy to obtain the resources as you may like.
Tribal Leatherworking Mastery
Tribal truly has some cool stuff. While Elemental focuses on protecting you from the elements, tribal focuses on damage output. A lot of the tribal recipes create items not so focused on adding agility but to adding attack power. A lot of diversity and options between tribal recipes make it a very useful mastery to pickup.
To get the resources to create your Tribal items you’ll need to skin certain kinds of creatures such as Devilsaurs in Un’Goro Crater or Frostsabers in Winterspring. Most of these monsters aren’t the easiest to solo and require a few friends to make the process go smoothly.
When undertaking the tribal quest you’ll have to have learned all the wild leather recipes from the Feralas quest located in Feathermoon h2hold.
Dragon Leatherworking Mastery
I’ve not had much experience with the dragon mastery but the thing that’s worth mentioning is it is focused on creating Mail items. This fact makes it more useful for hunters that have chosen leatherworking as a profession. The resources needed to create items in this mastery come from skinning various types of dragons. You’ll need to slay Green Dragons, Blue Dragons, Dragons in instances, etc… (and yes, whelps count as dragons).
Though leatherworking didn’t make me a lot of money, I didn’t focus on using it to do so. I enjoyed skinning as I controlled the flow of resources and it allowed me to plan my leveling schedule around it. I enjoy the recipes in the Tribal Mastery with Elemental as a close second. However, as new content is unlocked I may have more of an interest in Elemental because of the resistances it allows your armor to have.