The Chronicle of the Horse
MagazineNewsHorse SportsHorse CareCOTH StoreVoicesThe Chronicle UntackedDirectoriesMarketplaceDates & Results
 
Results 1 to 20 of 20
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 22, 2015
    Posts
    8

    Question Will Work For Ride?

    I'm inching closer and closer to finally taking riding lessons again. There's just one issue, that I thought I'd resolved.

    I don't own a car. I live downtown in my city and exist very happily without one. I got in touch with one of the larger barns in my town, a H/J barn I've heard nothing but good things about, and the trainer let me know that some students carpool, and would definitely be willing to pick me up and include me. Great!

    Except I'm not a H/J person, and have no interest in becoming one. I thought I'd just deal with it and go just to have access to horses again, but now I'm realizing it's unfair to ask this H/J trainer to teach me about disciplines I'm only borderline interested in when I am actually truly passionate about dressage.

    Before I quit horses, about five years ago, I was working as a working student at a dressage barn. I rode for about 9 or so years with lots of experimenting with disciplines at first, so I have jumped in the past. I just gravitated toward dressage and I'm still drawn to it like no other discipline.

    The issue is is that carpooling doesn't seem to be an option at local dressage barns. They're all much smaller than this H/J facility and don't have as many students.

    Would it be absolutely insane of me to ask a trainer for rides there and home in exchange for some barn work? Buying a car just to get to horses seems really silly to me! Obviously I'd pay for gas, and would only want to do something like this if the trainer finds themselves downtown at a regular time once a week or so. There are things I miss about being a working student, and while I don't have my sea legs at the moment so I won't be riding horses to pay off my rides, I am more than capable of cleaning stalls, cleaning tack, lunging, whatever it is that needs to be done.

    Should I suck it up and go to the H/J barn, or see if there's a trainer in my area open to this kind of arrangement? I don't know if this is completely bonkers or something that actually happens from time to time. Help?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 7, 2006
    Posts
    9,628

    Default

    Ask a taxi or car service to take you and pay a fare rather than trying to work it off from the trainer.

    Or borrow a car from a friend in exchange for covering whatever percentage you both decide is fair of insurance and maintenance costs.

    Or get your own car and you will DEFINITELY find uses for it other than the horses. For example visiting friends or doing day trips, etc.


    5 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar. 22, 2015
    Posts
    8

    Default

    My first thought was to check taxi services, but fares ended up totaling to what I imagine it'd be to have a little scrapper car, so I figured I'd sooner get a car than taxi.

    I cannot express to you how comfortably I live without a car when horses aren't involved! A lot of people in my city don't have one, and very few of my friends do! I actually only have one I'd feel comfortable asking, but what the hell, I'm going to ask. I hadn't even thought about borrowing a friend's car!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb. 21, 2015
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    380

    Default

    Do you live in a city with Zipcar? Or something like it? Car2Go?


    5 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar. 22, 2015
    Posts
    8

    Default

    Unfortunately not! This is also something I considered.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    May. 25, 2014
    Posts
    481

    Default

    Start at hj barn and see if you decide it's worth figuring out more complicated transport or bus to end of line then cab to dressage barn a couple of times and see how the fit is. If the fit is good I'm sure something will fall into place
    I am just one person. I cannot do everything. But I can make a difference. And I can have fun doing so!


    1 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2012
    Location
    Brokelyn
    Posts
    3,104

    Default

    I live in a city where I would have absolutely zero reason to own a car if I didn't ride, so I know where you're coming from.

    That said, when you're considering new barns, you absolutely cannot count on carpooling or any other kind of shared transportation. I can't tell you how many times I've heard, "oh, yeah, all my students carpool out - you can totally ride with them!" and have it not work out consistently or not work out at all.

    The only way you are going to be able to ensure that you ride on a semi-regular basis is if you take public transportation and then a cab/have trainer pick you up or if you rent or buy a car.

    Several otherwise perfect barns have not worked out for me due to carpooling not coming together.

    Right now I am renting cars (Zipcar is super expensive if you plan to spend several hours at the barn and can't find anyone to carpool with) and am at a point where I am spending about as much as it would cost to own/maintain a car just on renting on the weekends. I'm not taking the plunge on buying a car right now (because, as I'm sure you know, having a car in the city is not just about the expense but also the day-to-day hassle) so I will probably have to cut back my riding schedule or try (yet again) to find a more accessible barn.

    I've heard of mythical barns that pick their students up from nearby train stations but have never actually found one in my area.
    Quote Originally Posted by BAC View Post
    I don't think FF's post was rude (not this one at least).


    1 members found this post helpful.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May. 28, 2006
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    3,768

    Default

    How far away is this dressage barn? Could you bike? Or taxi partway there (cheaper) and then bike?


    1 members found this post helpful.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun. 9, 2012
    Posts
    165

    Default

    Scooter? Electric bike?


    1 members found this post helpful.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan. 6, 2009
    Posts
    334

    Default

    Is there bus service that has a stop relatively close to the barn. You could take the bus and then bike the rest of the way.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2001
    Location
    Parker, Colorado
    Posts
    2,757

    Default

    If you can keep your drive under 30-40 mph, get a scooter that is under 50 cc. In most cities, these do not count as cars; you can park them just like bicycles, and you can usually pick one up used pretty cheaply! You do have to register them, but insurance is also super cheap (follow your state's moped laws; in my state it would be under $100/year) and you can get something like 100 mpg.
    where are we going, and why am I in this hand basket?


    4 members found this post helpful.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan. 12, 2007
    Posts
    577

    Default

    Does this hunter jumper trainer "use" dressage? What level dressage are you at? I have found that many h/j trainers use dressage, even if they 1. refuse to admit it 2. don't use the word. I would check out a flatwork lesson with him/her and see what she/he teaches. Ride one of the horses he/she is proud of. If the flatwork philosophy fits with dressage (and correct aids dressage), go for it! I currently work with someone who even gasps, rides lower level dressage and I have noticed nary a difference between her flatwork principles and my dressage event trainers. Note that I'm 1st level and below,and perhaps there is something we are missing say if I wanted to go FEI levels, but I wouldn't know. I do understand though, that some don't follow dressage much at all, and then, I have to say, i would scrap it, even if it looks great, as you will be frustrated, even on their horses.

    Don't be close minded. You aren't even sure yet you can fit riding in your overall schedule.
    "Fool! Don't you see now that I could have poisoned you a hundred times had I been able to live without you." Cleopatra VII



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar. 22, 2015
    Posts
    8

    Default

    I've checked out bus routes to a few different barns and I think for at least some of them it might be an option to take the bus as close as I can and then bike. I'll have to look into scooters--would've never thought of that!--and see if that's a feasible option.

    I'm not sure if the H/J barn uses dressage. I would imagine yes, because I can't see anyone not using just the basics, but when I talked to the trainer and mentioned a primary interest in dressage, she said, "Oh... advanced flatwork." Maybe that's her avoiding the word?

    I thought I'd maybe solved this issue last night when I found a dressage barn I'd previously overlooked that was REALLY close to home, but the owner just let me know that she doesn't have any available school horses at the moment. Oh well.

    Thank you all for the responses! This is all super helpful to me.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun. 8, 2014
    Posts
    65

    Default

    It depends on the local car rental market, but a straight-up traditional rental car is often a better deal than zipcar/car2go for this sort of thing. (...and I write this as somebody who has used both Zipcar and car2go in the last week!) Rates at downtown locations can on a good day run in the $20-30 range, which covers up to 24 hours. The problem is that on a bad day (when there's a lot of demand) that can easily double or more; pricing in the world of rental cars is weird and very fluid. Fortunately unlike say airlines you can book ahead and cancel all you want for free. (Of the US national chains, Alamo and Enterprise seem to most frequently have decent rates at in-town locations.) With rental cars it's important to understand what you need insurance-wise going into it, because most of the agents will aggressively try to instill fear and doubt and upsell you on all sorts of insurance etc. you may not need (or the "prebuy a tank of gas ripoff) that can easily triple the cost. (Really it's a horrible business with a useful product.) In most states the rental car company is required to include minimal liability insurance, and many credit cards will cover collision damage, but you really need to understand what you have and how much coverage you need.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb. 21, 2015
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    380

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rhymeswithfizz View Post
    If you can keep your drive under 30-40 mph, get a scooter that is under 50 cc. In most cities, these do not count as cars; you can park them just like bicycles, and you can usually pick one up used pretty cheaply! You do have to register them, but insurance is also super cheap (follow your state's moped laws; in my state it would be under $100/year) and you can get something like 100 mpg.
    This might be good advice depending on the area, but be careful. I ride a 49cc Honda Metropolitan. It does get pretty close to 100 mpg, I do not need a motorcycle endorsement (but do need a drivers license), and I'm not required to have insurance. There's also no way I would ride it to the barn, because it has a top speed of 38 mph, and most of the roads going out to my lesson barn have speed limits of 55 mph. Yes, technically I could be that person who holds up all the other traffic, but with the way people in big trucks go bombing down those roads, I wouldn't risk it.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec. 16, 2006
    Location
    Here
    Posts
    1,222

    Default

    What about Uber/Lyft? They're (usually) cheaper than a regular taxi.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb. 13, 2015
    Location
    Pueblo
    Posts
    10

    Default

    sleep in the barn



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Sep. 18, 2007
    Location
    FL
    Posts
    782

    Default

    Gas is far from the only expense when you own a car. Consider that 55ยข per mile is the federal allowance for deductible mileage.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar. 22, 2015
    Posts
    8

    Default

    Mitch, if sleeping at the barn were an option, I'd definitely do it.

    Uber is in my city, but is about what it'd cost to taxi. Lyft isn't available around here.

    And yes, should I buy a car, gas money is the least of my concerns. It really doesn't make sense to own one in my city--unless I want to get to a barn, I guess!



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb. 21, 2015
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    380

    Default

    Perhaps if you told us which city you're talking about, someone might be able to give you some more specific suggestions?


    1 members found this post helpful.

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 10
    Last Post: Jul. 29, 2014, 08:45 AM
  2. Importance of ground work=GREAT ride!!
    By lilitiger2 in forum Off Course
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: Oct. 28, 2012, 08:43 AM
  3. Work to Ride Arrangement?
    By barnworkbeatshousework in forum Off Course
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: Nov. 17, 2010, 11:00 PM
  4. work/ride musings
    By ManyDogs in forum Hunting
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: Apr. 28, 2010, 07:40 PM
  5. Work to Ride having $$ troubles
    By halla in forum Off Course
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: Aug. 17, 2009, 10:07 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
randomness