Yard with no facilities, how do you manage?

LalaLala111

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I am having to move to a yard with less facilities due to not being able to afford both the travel and livery of current yard! I have 2 semi retired eventers (just hack) and 1 dressage/hunting does a bit of everything horse.

Currently on a yard with horse walker, large barn with stables and storage, tackroom, gallops, XC jumps, wash box and arena (although admittedly can't be used if it rains as has no drainage! So not much use). Its 30 mins from home and fairly pricey! Has around 30 horse altogether and is very overgrazed and never rotated, you get a field and stay in it! Hacking isnt brilliant, there is 3 mile road route which leads onto half mile all weather gallops but if you want to go any further you have to cross VERY busy A road and then there is still very minimal off road hacking.

So as of next month we will be moving to a small yard 3 miles from home! YO has 6 horses and there is one other livery. We would have our own barn with other livery and 4 fields to use as we please (ie rotate etc.) There is no arena or walker etc. basically just grazing and stables and amazing hacking, you can go for 6 hours and not hit a road! Literally a few yards up the lane is an eventers private yard who does lessons from her arena and may hire out but have yet to speak to her about the possibility.

So how do you all cope with having no facilities? Is it still possible to compete at a decent level (currently dressage elem and went be90 last season)? Hoping with having eventer next door i will gain more experience through good tuition? Im not too worried about keeping him fit as the hacking is so good, more the keeping dressage in his brain! Any pointers of schooling out hacking exercises etc.?

Thanks in advance!
 

skint1

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I don't compete but I reckon given the set up you've described you will be fine. Regular hacking will be very good for your horse's fitness and well being and I am sure if you speak nicely to the eventer neighbour they will probably let you rent out the school. I guess you could also trailer out to places regularly to school over xc jumps or in a school.
 

Tinsel Trouble

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depending on the nature of the eventer... I am sure that if you used them for lessons and really showed enthusiasm and commitment and got on well you would be able to tag along with them and hire their facilities! Sounds like an ideal location for your slowed down horses as well as your competitive horse.
 

thewonderhorse

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I own a yard with no facilities, it was my granddads place.

There is no school and 7 stables.

None of us compete and there is lovely hacking so we make do with that. There is a small outside area fenced off for lunging or schooling but its not really used.

I would love a covered school for both riding and turnout to save the field but finances don't allow unfortunately.
 
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julie111

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The new yard sounds much better. We rent 3 1/2 acres, 1 stable for storeage/ emergencies and nothing else. We hack out around the lanes and box up to access off road rides, we are also going to box up to have some lessons at a yard with an indoor school. Good luck
 

TGM

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Much depends on what flexibility you have timewise in the winter - because obviously a flood lit arena allows you to ride outside the very limited daylight hours. Otherwise, I can't think you will have too much of a problem if you want to compete at grassroots level. We had no arena until the end of last summer, but daughter still managed to compete successfully at BE100 level and be usually top 10 in the dressage. Being able to hire a local school can help and if you have transport you can box out to lessons and clinics - which often has the advantage that your horse settles at strange venues more quickly than one that usually only schools at home. Have you got a flat field that you will be allowed to school in when the ground conditions are good? If so, this actually gives you an advantage eventing over horses that are not used to dressaging on grass!
 

PorkChop

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I have evented with no facilities, I did go to my instructors arena for flatwork/jumping lessons, but would have been just as happy having lessons in my field.

So yes it is entirely possible, sounds like a lovely set up.
 

IndygoGirl

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I'm on a yard with 8 horses and 7 acres, no arena. Decent hacking in winter as long as not icy as all on very quiet private lanes, better in summer as the farmers let us canter round the edge of their fields. Very easy to keep the horses fit just walking and trotting round the lanes which you can do for miles.
I showjump most weekends - we have qualified for second rounds, national amateurs and scope without an arena. I find not having an arena means I don't risk over schooling or them getting bored but if I need some practice I will either go to one of my instructors for a lesson or hire an arena locally, but just competing regularly does the job. There're also some local unaffiliated shows nearby where you can 'join' the riding club or center and then entry fees are 5 pounds. So I take mine for the later classes, pay the entry fee, school in the warmup and then school them round the course. At 5 a horse it's a lot cheaper than hiring an arena, and I don't have to bring anyone with me to pole lift!
There are always ways of doing things. The only struggle I had with not having an arena was when my horses came out of work, I found it difficult to get them fit enough again without the canter work.

But my horses are very happy, perform consistently, are less than 15 minutes away and there aren't enough liveries to create drama! Definitely worth it for me.
 

TGM

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There're also some local unaffiliated shows nearby where you can 'join' the riding club or center and then entry fees are 5 pounds. So I take mine for the later classes, pay the entry fee, school in the warmup and then school them round the course. At 5 a horse it's a lot cheaper than hiring an arena, and I don't have to bring anyone with me to pole lift!

Yes we have done similar in the past to get the horses exercised cheaply on winter evenings. Popped them on the box, up the road to the local indoor clear round which is £5 a go, given them a decent warm up and then jumped round the course.
 

Honey08

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My yard is exactly what you're going to. I wouldn't swop it for gallops and horse walkers. I have two friends with arenas within 15 mins hack away (sadly no top eventer). In summer we put dressage markers and boards in the field and jumps, and we school in there. Most other work is done on hacks. I love our fab hacking, it's the best part of having horses. I used to do BE off this set up. I bet you love it!
 

INCACLEO33

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We have no facilities, electric or water, but we compete at Carriage Driving and have been to the Nationals. We drive out on the road and ride in the field or if weather is bad and field too wet up and down the lane. All you need is imagination, i.e. Fast walk/slow walk between trees or fence posts, leg yield, walk over poles etc all in the lane. There is a brilliant book called Schooling whilst you hack that has some great ideas too
 

MagicMelon

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So how do you all cope with having no facilities? Is it still possible to compete at a decent level (currently dressage elem and went be90 last season)? Hoping with having eventer next door i will gain more experience through good tuition? Im not too worried about keeping him fit as the hacking is so good, more the keeping dressage in his brain! Any pointers of schooling out hacking exercises etc.?

Absolutely its doable. I would absolutely love facilities like you've had, just a school would be a huge treat as Ive never had one. I competed to Novice/CIC* and 1.20m BS easily with no school. I also didnt hack the horse I did this with. All schooling was done in the field, just tailor what you do on a daily basis to the ground conditions / weather. If you have open areas out hacking then you could stop and do some schooling for a bit, means it wouldn't mess up your field so much ;) Anything is doable if you put your mind to it, I'm currently backing my new horse (totally on my own) with no facilities other than a small stable block with hardcore yard and a field... would be far easier with a school but hey ho! Good luck OP, bet you'll love it!
 
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