Bridlepath Gates

Fletchersmum

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Anyone have any tips on opening gates to bridlepaths easily?? You know the ones with the long handles.

My horse is 17.3hh so hopping on and off is NOT an option!!
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LOL, he is also getting on a bit so cant turn on a sixpence anymore. I usually find they open outwards, so by the time ive shoved it open and got horsie position to get through, it comes slamming back towards us either hitting my horse in the side or my leg, GGrrrr.
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Where I live I am blessed with miles of paths to choose from but you have to open a million gates LOL! Sometimes you get lucky and a walker will open them for you, most of the time its a struggle.
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Any tips???
 

JustKickOn

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Are there not mounting blocks by the gates on your bridle paths!? Being a public way, you could write to your local council public right of ways officer (I think that's what they're called) and see if they will put some mounting blocks here and there, as all riders would benefit from a mounting block
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Hope you find a way to solve your problem
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random_rider

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If they are long handles coming up i face the horse forward (ready to walk through the gate) with there head like over the gate and i lean forward and grab the handle and push it forwards and slide my hands down the top of the gate to hold it open while i walk through!

We dont have mounting blocks near ours Lizzie! do you?!
 

sallyellis

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I have the same problem one time the gate sprung back caught my stirrup and I ended up having to ride home (quite some way) with no stirrup. I wish they weren't spring loaded, just that you could open them and then close them after you it would make life so much easier as would providing mounting blocks.
 

Fletchersmum

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I wish we did have a mounting block at each one that would be my probs sorted!!
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Do you have these then Elizabeth_x?

Yeah it would so help if the gates were not spring loaded, but in some cases they have to be where there is livestock involved, but they are a real hassle!
 

xena_wales

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Whereabouts are you in West Wales madwife? Carmarthenshire or Pembrokeshire? I ask because I'm in Carms, and my local bridleway has just had some of these horrid gates installed that bite you on the way through
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Orangehorse

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Also known as "mouse trap gates." Report to the BHS if they have caused you an injury or damage to saddle/horse.

Complain to the County Council and refer them to Kent CC and Worcestershire CC. Worcs CC is modifying them and trialing a new b/p gate and the officers have been instructed to take care that they are properly installed so they do not "snap back." Correct installation including using a spirit level and making sure the latch is the right way up, are important.

In Kent one of these gates caused a fatal injury to a horse and I think that they are taking steps to improve matters too.

As far as the gates with handles - these are supposed to be easier for riders to use, so don't start complaining about them.

Having had one really good gate opening horse, but with t he present one not quite so good, I am tempted to say "teach your horse to open gates correctly" but that is fine in principle but not always in practice as if they have had an unfortunate experience they tend to be less co-operative.
But you are supposed to approach witht he horse pararel to the gate, so you can grab the handle in your right hand, then with the horse backing/doing a turn on the forehand, and STANDING still when required, but I admit I wouldn't get any marks in TREC for my gate opening abilities, but we manage usually to stay on board for most of them.
 

SpruceRI

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I'm on holiday in Exmoor at the mo, in Exford. Went on a hack the other day and came across a bridlepath where the Council/Horse Society are doing a horse gate project.

Along the track were 8 gates, all with different openings and latches.

One of us opened each gate and one of us closed.

I must admit, the 'horse gate' with the sticky-up post which had to be pulled sideways was the most difficult to open as it was stiff, and we didn't seem to be able to get at the right angle to it (Path on the side of a mountain anyway!).

It wasn't spring loaded though, so didn't ping back. Closure was easy, as you just gave it a kick and it slammed back.

The Exmoor hooks were the easiest if they were at the top of the gate, as there was nothing the rider or horse could get caught up in if they got too close.

I bought one for my own gate at home, at the Mole Valley Farmers shop!!
 

yethersgill

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We have quite a few of these and are one of the few gates that me and the Bogbeast can open
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Check to see if they open both ways, as ours do (Peak District).
 

Orangehorse

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I did tell the CC that when they installed the gates to give them a good squirt of oil so they would open easily, as it is very difficult to get leverage when you are up on a horse.

Our Bridlepaths Society took a group of CC officers out on a ride on very quiet horses, just to show them all what it is like riding, with ducking overgrown hedges, riding down by the side of barbed wire and trying to open awkward gates. They needed reviving with lots of hot coffee and chocolate biscuits, but since then have been very helpful with bridlepath issues.
 
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