From Endurance to Dressage
Izzy lives turned out on (just under) a quarter acre. It's a dry sandy lot with excellent drainage. It can get wet and muddy, but it's rare. Since it's so big, and since Izzy poops wherever he happens to be standing at the time, I don't use a fork and cart to pick up the poop. Instead, Reggie uses the tractor to mash and spread.
Since it is so dry here in Central California - we live in a state of perpetual drought, soil loss is a real concern, especially in the horse pens. Scooping poop means sand also gets scooped, and over time, the cement where posts are installed can begin to show.
Manure dries out within hours here, and if the horses walk through it at all - as both of mine do, it begins to crumble and break apart naturally. When my boys have lived in small outdoor runs or typical pens, I cleaned the poop at least once a day, twice if I could. Now, I let Reggie take care of it with the tractor.
The tractor was out of service for a week or so, so the manure piles had grown larger than I like, but fortunately, the tractor is back on duty. Reggie was able to take care of Izzy's paddock on Monday. And since the ranch owner had acquired some loads of dirt for flood control, Reggie added fresh dirt along the fence line and other places where Izzy likes to dig. He was able to do all of this while I was out riding.
If you live somewhere wet and green, manure doesn't really dry out and fall apart like ours does. In those situations it can be a breeding ground for flies, mould, and stink. And of course horses in stalls - whether here or someplace cooler, need their manure removed frequently. I would definitely be picking up daily under any of those conditions. Living somewhere so dry and hot has its advantages.
Hurray for hot and dry weather? You take whatever wins you can!
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: