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View Full Version : ICE!! How are you dealing with it?



Tornado Run Farm
Dec. 16, 2010, 09:35 PM
I'd rather have 6 ft. of snow than 1/2 inch of ice! Where I am, temps aren't expected to get above freezing for the next 4-5 days. I've been keeping my horses up, but not letting them out for a week seems daunting. So I've made paths with stall muck where it gets especially slippery around the water tanks and gates. While this provides enough traction around these spots, of course I can't do it for their entire field. After everything melts, it also makes for a mess to clean up.

What tips do others have mitigating risk of injury when turned out on ice? Or do you keep your horses up until it's gone?

ReSomething
Dec. 16, 2010, 11:57 PM
We have an ice thaw refreeze cycle going on and they have been trapped in their pens. We haven't put anything down and we had snow last night so they were allowed out today, the snow has a crust of freezing rain on it and is pretty stable. We have put them out in our flattest paddock during icy conditions, and tried to make sure there was no roughhousing. The old guy is aware he is less agile and we cross our fingers for the pony, there is also quite a bit of old hay scattered in that paddock. Ideally they'd be separated. We may get some de icer for specific spots but we have to be careful about making mud then.

The real problem is getting the vehicles moved around. I got stuck on the driveway coming home one night and we aren't able to take any vehicle to the run in as the route has a negative bank and even the 4x tractor starts to swimming. We have a lot of projects involving grading and stone dust come spring time.

Equsrider
Dec. 17, 2010, 12:04 AM
Hate to say it, but from a seasoned veteran of wicked winter weather with lots of ice storms, keep them in...they will go stir crazy, so cut their grain and add more hay, more often...better to have stir crazy horse than a broken one from a fall on the ice...

LauraKY
Dec. 17, 2010, 08:59 AM
Hate to say it, but from a seasoned veteran of wicked winter weather with lots of ice storms, keep them in...they will go stir crazy, so cut their grain and add more hay, more often...better to have stir crazy horse than a broken one from a fall on the ice...

Duh, why didn't I think of that? And I know better. Rations cut in half starting now!

We've been walking them in the aisle while mucking...except for the new guy whose still in isolation until next Thursday. Poor little guy, he's used to 24/7 turnout. He's NOT happy.

Tornado Run Farm
Dec. 17, 2010, 10:07 AM
Yes, I guess I pretty much knew the answer before I asked the question. It's just that I've learned so many things here on COTH about gidgets, gadgets and solutions, I was hoping someone knew of a magic wand (inexpensive, of course) to just make it all go away.... ;)

I've cut their ration in half and took away their alfalfa flakes ... but it's going to be a long, hard winter... o bother...

2DogsFarm
Dec. 17, 2010, 10:42 AM
I'm with ya on snow vs ice :(
We have had a Deepfreeze week coming after a hideous snowstorm with 50mph winds last Saturday.
Storm started with rain, so of course by Sunday morning everything that wasn't drifted kneedeep or higher was a skating rink.

However my horses generally have free acess from their stalls through a sacrifice area to the pastures & after locking them in Saturday night, I am letting them decide how to manage.

Thnaks for reminding me about spreading stall cleanings for traction.
Actually I find this is not a cleanup problem in Spring as it melts into compost.
But I am only talking about 2 horses' worth of muck. ;)

So far both my guys - 16yo WB & 10yo Hackney Pony - seem to be avoiding any falls or reckless behavior.
{ahem} that is if I discount the pony trying to mount the Big Guy (17h+) Sunday morning...
Think: Chihuahua vs St Bernard :rolleyes:

Equsrider
Dec. 17, 2010, 11:40 AM
ya, winters like this suck!! I can hardly hold my excitement in about the upcomming weather of January and February, which is typically the worst for us....
LauraKY, I do that too walking in the aisle....

HappyHorselover
Dec. 17, 2010, 11:45 AM
Mine have free access to the barn and I have found if I keep them up, they tend to be really stupid by the time I let them back out, so they get to manage their own time. The ice here is on top of snow and they break through it, so I don't find it is too slippery. They have just been standing around their round bale anyways! :)