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View Full Version : PNW FARMS what size gravel for turnouts?



stryder
Jul. 31, 2012, 02:50 PM
We are preparing for the wet winter. BO is adding crushed rock to lower areas. She'll add a layer on top. But what size? Farrier says what she has in the round pen - pea gravel- is too small and could wedge in the white line. Next size is 7/8ths washed (actually 1/2 to 1 inch. BO thinks that seems too big.

Any suggestions about what's worked for you?

Thanks.

Mosey_2003
Jul. 31, 2012, 04:44 PM
If it's just the lower areas and they can get off of it that size should work just fine unless you have very tender footed horses, I would think. I'd be most afraid of it just sinking into the mud though.

Calvincrowe
Jul. 31, 2012, 05:01 PM
Huh...my farrier is over the moon with the screenings (angular bits that literally fall through the crusher screens) I have in my paddocks. I have a bottom layer of 5/8ths minus gravel on top of my geotextile cloth, then about 4" of screenings/pea gravel on that. Been in place for 5 years now, no hoof problems at all. I am surprised your farrier would say that...

Call your rock guys and talk with them about it, but screenings or crusher run as it is sometimes called is super for the top layer.

The barn I board my show horse at has 5/8ths minus in their paddocks and the horses are quite fine with that, too. I'm surprised your rock folk don't have 5/8ths minus--that is small driveway gravel down to tiny crushed rock mixed together--call them and ask!

Mosey_2003
Jul. 31, 2012, 05:07 PM
Try asking for road rock or base mix, that's the generic term for 5/8 minus. Well, ours is actually called 1" down, but yaknow. That would pack in nicely, or do the larger clean rock and put screenings on top. Also, ask if they have a clean product instead of a washed product, would be cheaper. You don't need the rock washed for paddocks.

stryder
Jul. 31, 2012, 05:31 PM
thanks, everyone!!

this is very helpful.

horsepoor
Jul. 31, 2012, 05:56 PM
The bigger stuff will make it harder to pick up manure. Think about how far apart the tines are on a fork and will the rock fall through?

I have pea gravel, the real stuff, round and small (3/8" or so?), with no fines mixed in as my top layer. Drains great, easy to pick manure, and does not pack (I have Hoof Grid plastic stabilizing grids under that, and we were told specifically not to use screenings as it would pack down and not drain). My vet and my farrier love it and every horse that spends time here has the best feet, even if they were rotting off when they arrived.

We had to go to several places before finding the right stuff, as pea gravel means different things around here, or so it seems. A lot of what was labelled pea gravel was angular and not at all what I wanted. So I always recommend getting samples first, or at least checking it out before they dump at your place. It is hard to return if they bring the wrong thing!

stryder
Jul. 31, 2012, 05:59 PM
Horsepoor, difficulty in picking is an excellent point!!!

thanks.

TrotTrotPumpkn
Jul. 31, 2012, 10:56 PM
The bigger stuff will make it harder to pick up manure. Think about how far apart the tines are on a fork and will the rock fall through?

I have pea gravel, the real stuff, round and small (3/8" or so?), with no fines mixed in as my top layer. Drains great, easy to pick manure, and does not pack (I have Hoof Grid plastic stabilizing grids under that, and we were told specifically not to use screenings as it would pack down and not drain). My vet and my farrier love it and every horse that spends time here has the best feet, even if they were rotting off when they arrived.

We had to go to several places before finding the right stuff, as pea gravel means different things around here, or so it seems. A lot of what was labelled pea gravel was angular and not at all what I wanted. So I always recommend getting samples first, or at least checking it out before they dump at your place. It is hard to return if they bring the wrong thing!

So you mean the little, round rocks that used to be used in playgrounds. :) Or do I have the wrong "pea gravel?"

Calvincrowe
Jul. 31, 2012, 11:52 PM
Trot--more or less, yes. Pea gravel is just that, round and about the size of peas or smaller. Doesn't pack, massages the hooves, sticks to poop ;), but drains beautifully. It is mixed in with my screenings (crusher run) which are angular, super fine, and pack--so the pea gravel sits on top of a packed layer of gravel. No mud, pick poop daily, run the harrow over the paddock each spring/summer to loosen up things, perfect paddock footing!!

horsepoor
Aug. 1, 2012, 01:02 AM
So you mean the little, round rocks that used to be used in playgrounds. :) Or do I have the wrong "pea gravel?"

Yes, pea gravel is supposed to be small and round, just like peas.
For me, the difficulty was in finding round, not angular, and pretty uniform sizing. Last load was a bit larger "peas" than the time before, but still less than 1/2" or whatever that space is between tines on a fork.

Mosey_2003
Aug. 1, 2012, 08:08 AM
They really shouldn't be calling it pea gravel if it's angular. What probably happened was the quarry he/she went to didn't carry pea gravel so gave the equivalent size in chips. That happens here a lot, people want pea gravel and I don't have it, but you need to ask what the intended purpose is, because for normal drainage situations the chips work just swell. Maybe next time inform the contractor/driver that you need smooth pea gravel and substitution is not an option.

horsepoor
Aug. 1, 2012, 02:01 PM
They really shouldn't be calling it pea gravel if it's angular. What probably happened was the quarry he/she went to didn't carry pea gravel so gave the equivalent size in chips. That happens here a lot, people want pea gravel and I don't have it, but you need to ask what the intended purpose is, because for normal drainage situations the chips work just swell. Maybe next time inform the contractor/driver that you need smooth pea gravel and substitution is not an option.

We were dealing directly with the quarries at that time, going around and getting samples. And maybe some intermediate distributors, I can't remember -- but we went to the source for the stuff so we wouldn't have the wrong truckload show up. Find the right rock, then get someone to bring it -- that's what worked for that particular project since we (I!) was quite picky about what I wanted.

UrbanHennery
Aug. 2, 2012, 07:19 PM
We've got 5/8 minus in ours and haven't had any problem with shod or barefoot horses. It falls through the fork tines when I pick and every once in a while we use the tractor to regrade it a bit to keep it draining (we've got a slope).

We scraped out all the mud, put in 8" of gravel, and then ran a plate compactor on it. We got away with no mud barrier as our dry lot has a natural slope to it and so everything runs off pretty well - my DH is an excavation contractor and turns out he was right about that even though I was nervous.

We've gotten through 3 PNW winters with our gravel and will be top dressing in just a few spots this fall.

stryder
Aug. 2, 2012, 10:18 PM
UrbanHennery, sounds like you've really figured this out!! And you might be close. Where in SnoCo are you?

UrbanHennery
Aug. 3, 2012, 01:28 PM
Stryder, we're up by Silvana. PM me if you want info on where we got our gravel and I'll ask M (I don't remember).