Is hacking ‘in a field’ sufficient?

The-Bookworm

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Yes and unless you get bored I suppose?
I have fields to use and roads to use, I mix up the week that way.
You could build a xc course with that space. I put jumps out randomly.
I like roadwork to harden tendons and if unshod self trim but the roads turned into fields I would still be using the same space.
 

mjcssjw2

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Since i got hit by a car whilst riding my horse i wont hack out on my own anymore, so its the fields for me and front drive!! i do go out competing though
 

The-Bookworm

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The only thing I would question it that roadwork is the best for hardening up tendons ect?
I always thought this as well.
Perhaps if you are on clay soil or in the middle of summer the ground could almost be as hard as concrete anyway?
Some school surfaces are very unforgiving.
 

scruffyponies

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I have lots of off-road riding but we also hack on the road (lanes and villages) a lot. It's great for feet (barely have to trim) and leg condition, but best of all, you get a pony which is totally confident and calm with pretty much anything life will throw at him.

There's occasionally something really challenging - on Sunday it was a 19th century motorised carriage out for a jolly, which pony had a VERY good look at! - but horses do like to get out and see 'stuff', and it's good for rider confidence too.
 

Surbie

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My yard has tracks round all the fields. No roads. Plenty of good hills though!
Your yard just sounds better and better!! We have a track round our whole site but we're not allowed to ride on it. Many wistful looks...:)

I like doing a bit of roadwork, but my horse is sensible in traffic & with garden bins etc. He's just been introduced to a level crossing. I think it helps him as he's a pretty reactive chap.

Having said that, OP your farm sounds amazing. I'd definitely be encouraging a few trees to lie down in strategic places.
 

Tarragon

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I keep my two on a 300 acre sheep farm and can ride any where. Luckily for me this also includes a substantial hill climb so "hacking" includes hill work. In my hour riding that I fit in before work it could include 10 min walk to a flat part of a field, 20 min schooling, 10 minute trot/canter up a slight income in what I call my "Gallop" field, 10 minute steep hill climb, 3 minute stop to admire the view, walk back to stables.
We have two road loops that I can also do in the hour and then go as far as I like at the weekend.

Edited to add that fallen logs and branches are there to be jumped :)
 

Tarragon

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I have thought that I should get one of those apps that plot your ride to see what my on the farm exercise looks like compared to the same time spent in an arena - probably show up that my schooling "circles" are anything but!
 

The-Bookworm

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I have thought that I should get one of those apps that plot your ride to see what my on the farm exercise looks like compared to the same time spent in an arena - probably show up that my schooling "circles" are anything but!
It's not an app but I have gps. My lunge sessions cover just under two miles because it includes walking to and from the field.
I like doing ovals and squares. Circles can be boring. :)
 

Landcruiser

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I'd love access to 600 acres but I'd get very bored if that was ALL I had. I need to be exploring and seeing different stuff, riding different surfaces, lots of variety and adventure. It's why I enjoy TREC so much I guess. Going to completely new and unfamiliar places and just setting off with a map. I'd feel like a goldfish in a bowl if I were confined to one place, even a decent size place like OP has.
 

Lyle

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I live on 100 acres and hack all around, there are large looping driveways and open paddocks. I have sections that I can trot/canter back and forth, and plenty of space to wander. It's an interesting property with steeper hills, treed areas and gently sloping paddocks. The horse loves it, he's a sensitive type and I think he enjoys knowing what's coming up! the Kangaroos leaping out of places keeps them on their toes enough! Feel very privelidged to live here, I've done my fair share of slogging on roads previously.
 

Tarragon

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It's not an app but I have gps. My lunge sessions cover just under two miles because it includes walking to and from the field.
I like doing ovals and squares. Circles can be boring. :)
It is interesting, isn't it, to record exactly what you do in a session.
Do you do the two miles or the horse?
 

hopscotch bandit

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As title really..
We live on a 600acre dairy farm with plenty of accessible fields (mainly flat and “horsey friendly”, although OH may not agree:p)
Should I be making more of an effort to get on the road?
I park my trailer at a local pub and hack out from there. Not only is it a nice change but its very quiet as our yard is surrounded by busy roads and National Trust houses which makes the lanes dangerous. The area is quiet (I was stabled there for 2 years and really miss the hacking) and the manageress lets me park there in off peak time i.e. 8.30 on a Sunday morning for a couple of hours in return for a couple of quid in the charity tin, a reasonable request and one I am happy more than happy to oblige. I tend to do a different route of between and hour and an hour and a half and probably go out twice a month of average.

You could see if you could strike up a similar deal with some pubs/car parks/garage forecourts in your area of hacking choice. I take my wheel clamp with me just in case but I think that securing a lorry or trailer in a car park of a pub is a lot safer than just parking up in a layby. Also a lot safer for loading and unloading no matter how quiet the lanes! I always clear up every last strand of hay or ball of poo and am very conscientious not to ride over the grass where the picnic tables are. Luckily there's a couple of lorry spaces worth of hardstanding so its a doddle to park, the rest of the parking is made up of tarmac car spaces (not long enough for trailer/car combo)and grass for the summer.

Riding around fields or boundary rides is all very well and good but after a while even that gets boring although 600 acres is very big!
 
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