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Mud Management - Part Deux!

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  • Mud Management - Part Deux!

    Has anyone ever put down stone dust or screenings then put 4x6 3/4 inch mats over it to help control mud in a small area? I have stone dust left over from another project and some old mats and can't afford right now to get the mud grids that I want. The area is about 10 ft by 20 ft. Right now, the area is not muddy of course but that will change later.
  • Original Poster

    #2
    Well, I guess by the lack of responses, not many people have done this.... Oh well...I won't be out any money just my time and effort so I think I will run this by DH and see if he thinks this is a dumb idea!

    Comment


    • #3
      The problem with just putting material (stonedust) down on top of a mud-prone area, is the material will just sink into the muck over time. The best solution is to dig out all the topsoil that gets muddy, put down gravel, lay geotextile fabric over that, and then stonedust or your top material of choice (pea gravel is also well liked) on top of that. Then you have to be diligent about removing any organic material on top of that surface (hay, manure, ec) However that process, while enduring, is more expensive and labor intensive than what you're talking about.

      I think for a fairly small area like what you're talking about, it could work. At least for a while. I would think if the area isn't wet/low lying in general, it could work quite well for a little longer. When you do go to put in grids, you'll have the additional material to remove, but that's probably acceptable.

      Let us know how it works out!
      A good man can make you feel sexy, strong, and able to take on the world.... oh, sorry.... that's wine...wine does that...

      http://elementfarm.blogspot.com/

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Thanks ElementFarm! It's a bottleneck area from one pasture to another and it got really bad this past year and it took forever to dry out. I priced out the grids and I can't do it this year. We have a tractor with FEL so cleaning up the mess next year won't be bad (for me...) and I kinda just wanted a quick fix before mud season. There won't be any organic material to clean up as it's simply a coming and going area.

        I will report back! Unless, of course, DH thinks it's not worth our effort.

        Comment


        • #5
          Since you already have the stone dust and the area is small, I'd just lay down your stone dust. If you can get it 5 or 8 inches thick that would be ideal. The issue is if it's a heavy rain and traffic area it will eventually get worked down into the mud. If it's not a super high traffic area, and you don't mind replacing it every so often, then it isn't going to hurt. Personally I wouldn't use mats as they get slick when wet and can accumulate ice.
          http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

          Comment


          • #6
            If you can pull out some of the resident material, I'd put in a layer of road base or crush and run and then a layer of rock dust. The road base/crush and run will have larger gravel mixed in with smaller gravel to rock dust and will compact and firm up the area you have. The rock dust on top will give you a smooth surface for the horses.

            You also didn't say how deep your mud got. My horses have been at my new barn for just over a year. Part of that time was the wettest it has been in our area in a LONG time. Normal 45" of rain in a year, and I think we had close to 72". I had a sacrifice paddock behind the barn. At the time of construction, I could only afford to put footing in for a 36'x50' pad. The sacrifice area extended another 60' from there. The footing I put in was on top of the clay base. It had around 3" of 57 stone and then 4" of rock dust along with a french drain. It held up VERY well with 3 horses being confined to that area from Nov to April. The mud in the 60' area beyond the improved part of the sacrifice paddock didn't get deeper than 4-6". This summer I had crush and run added to extend the sacrifice area by another 30'. Generally it is a 30'x36' area that was graded to 4-6" depth of crush and run. Some of this will become incorporated into the native soil, but I expect it to be firmer and the mud to be less deep than this winter. I plan on adding more crush and run to the far end of the sacrifice lot next year.

            This may not work in your area with your soil type. In my area, adding a bit of gravel to gate ways tends to firm things up and distribute weight without having to go to the expense of doing geo fabric or the mud tile. But we have clay with a thinnish layer of top soil.

            Comment


            • #7
              I'd be tempted to put the mats down, throw a few inches of the stonedust on top for traction. When the ground starts to freeze, scrape back the stone dust with the tractor and pull up the mats and push the stone dust back. You can use the mats again elsewhere and not really any extra stuff to deal with next year when you put in the grids.

              Comment


              • #8
                I don't do the mat part (I would think too slippery when frosty or wet) but I put carpet down, and dust on top. I did that prob 4 years ago now and I do need to add some dust in places. Or you could dig down a few inches, fabric, bigger clean stone to drain, fabric, and dust on top. I would think that would last you a good long time without investing in the grids.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Thank you everyone!! These are some good ideas I hadn't thought of! So, one more question and I will leave everyone alone.. What about putting down the geotextile fabric (which I already have) over what is now totally dry dirt and then stone dust to about 6 inches or more and leave off the mats? The area is the entrance to another pasture and it has a dip to it which is where the rain collected. It got very deep, think 8 or more inches!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I would add a layer of medium size stones to the ground, geotextile fabric next then how ever many inches of rock dust to get you at or above grade. The stone base will distribute the weight of the horses and equipment going through the gate and help to firm up the under lying soil. The 3 together will allow the water to drain away from the surface.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Even better would be to take away some to all of the topsoil and add more gravel to the base.

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Thank you jawa! I'm going to show all of these ideas to DH this weekend! Oh, and when I get time next week, I plan on wowing everyone with the grande finale of our latest project which is why I have stone dust left over: putting down grid and mats in our two run in sheds per Simkie's wonderful example per this thread!
                        So, while reading the above thread, I wanted to see if anyone could see the pros/cons of how I plan to fix my two run in sheds. Right now, it's compacted

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