View Full Version : Cross country course building

Apr. 19, 2010, 05:14 PM
Has anyone have any experince, or is currently building (or thinking of building) a cross country course, here? How many jumps/obstacles could one expect? What types of obstacles? How much acreage would a typical one take up?

Apr. 19, 2010, 06:55 PM
What level? What type of show? Do you just want a schooling course or full event? Lots of variables to consider.

This page (from the USEA) has lots of PDFs you can download to answer some building questions:


If you're looking for a builder, I know of several good ones (I'm marrying one next month :D). Here's his website:


Hope this helps!

Apr. 19, 2010, 07:19 PM
I'm wondering what people have/would like to have on their property as a schooling course for preparing their horses, boarders and/or themselves for shows?

Level wise, anything from a complete eventing beginner to advanced or at least preliminary or maybe intermediate level.

Does the higher the level neccessarily mean the more room/acreage is needed?

Old Time Rider
Apr. 20, 2010, 07:58 AM
Years ago I helped construct 2 cross country courses (BN & N). We used a combination of permanent & portable fences since part of the course was on the hay field. Portables are great as moving them around you can create new tracts without the expense/time of building new fences. Acreage would depend on terrain - the 2 courses I helped build were on approximately 10 acres.

Apr. 20, 2010, 09:15 AM
Beenthere, where are you located? Take some time to overlook the USEA website. Check the omnibus for your location -- your Area -- and look at the events listed in the omnibus for your area. Consider taking a local road trip, go look at the courses or visit the event while it's on - walk the courses - touch base with the folks already eventing in your region, find out what they are doing, and more importantly, what they NEED. The more time you spend learning about this sport, the less work you will do. Are you a rider? Trainer? Evented before? Have a knowledgeable rider or trainer to help you?

Cross country jump building is easy, it's setting the course that takes some expertise. Course design is ALL of a good experience for horses and riders. If you plan on making money from your course, or using it as a business attraction, you would be very smart to at least consult an accredited course designer. It will be time and money very well spent. (As well as a possible business deduction if that is what you are doing.)

Even a very introductory course needs to be set so that horses are comfortable. If it's just something you want to throw together in the pasture, (I've got one of those! :) it still needs to be done safely, so that horses aren't discouraged or riders endangered. For instance: a local course has a lovely jump, beautifully built, but set off stride up a slight dip in the ground. Horses of all kinds never get this jump comfortably because they can't get the strides up the hill right -- the fence is set off stride from the lip of the hill. Same jumping it downhill. Someone put the fence there because it looked good there, but didn't realize how horses had to approach it to get there, or how big the stride was on landing, or didn't measure correctly. As a result, it's a crappy jump for schooling, and took someone a long time to build -- but it's useless. Just my cautions. (Been there, done that.)

Good luck and it's wonderful you want to do this! Welcome to the Dark Side!