So often when I discover a new blog, I’m curious where the blogger is from. Not because I like to stalk people (ha), but because I feel like that frames how I think about their horse situation. I know several bloggers board and live in an urban area, several who board and live out in the country, and like me, several who live out in the country and own our own property.
With this in mind, I’ve decided to create my first blog hop!
My farm and horses are located in Southwest Virginia. We’re located in the Appalachian mountains, though not deep in coal country. There are lots of farms in our area and I think it is safe to say that most people around here either own or lease land on which to keep their horses instead of boarding.
Costs of horse keeping in SWVA? (Note that these costs come from my experience and may vary…especially the hay costs, depending on what time of year hay is purchased. I’m an early bird where buying hay is concerned.)
- Average cost of a month of full time training- $600
- Average monthly pasture board- $200
- Average monthly stall board- $450 (this figure I’m the least confident on as I’ve never had a horse in stall board without training.)
- Round bale, mixed grass- $30-$40 depending on if delivered.
- Square bales, orchard grass- $5 per bale, plus possible delivery, though a lot of people have a truck/trailer and will just go get it themselves.
- Mountain views? Priceless.
Weather? The warmest it gets here is the 90’s (though more often 80’s and below) and it while occasionally it gets below 0 here, more often the temperature stays in the 20’s/30’s during winter. We normally have two/three heavy snows (between 8 and 18 inches) and several dustings/1-2 inch snows during winter. Spring and fall are the best though, and the area is the prettiest during these seasons (these seasons have the best riding weather).
Riding demographic for the area? Mostly western and trail riders. If you go an hour in either direction you run into more English disciplines like hunter/jumper and dressage. We’re a little over two hours from the VA Horse Center, so that’s nice. We have one tack store in the area, and it is 99.9% western gear and generally at the max MSRP. Other tack stores are close to an hour away, so I order most stuff online.
Other notes? In hunting season you can often hear random gun shots around dusk. You know, after work when its most convenient to ride in the 15 seconds before it is completely dark. 😉 Luckily Paige and Copper are used to it and don’t even react anymore. I could probably shoot a gun off of Paige if the situation called for it, but I have yet to attempt that.
Frustrating things about our area?
- The tack store situation can be annoying. Though, honestly, I’d probably still shop online regardless since I buy mostly used tack.
- We have a shortage of quality large animal veterinarians. My vet comes from an hour away, but is an older man, who I hope has no intentions of retirement.
So, tell me about where you live. Are there any frustrating things about your area? What is the weather like? How does the cost of keeping horses compare to where I live?
Blogs Who Have Hopped Along (in no particular order):
If I have forgotten anyone, please comment on this post and tell me. 🙂