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high traffic area

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  • high traffic area

    I've read threads here on what to do for high horse traffic areas, so do know there are other threads. I tend to think that the best option for my space, which is quite sloping (for the first 10 feet or so) since the barn was put on a pad, and the horse entrances are at the place where the pad is highest.
    I've been to tourist places in England where there was a hard plastic grid that was put down for intense people and car traffic. I have always thought that would be ideal for this use.
    Does anyone have any idea what that is called or where it could be purchased? Each of these two doors is 8 feet wide.

  • #2
    I think there are several manufacturers...hoofgrid is one.


    • Original Poster

      Thanks Lisa! That is great. I have just called some distributers, and one answered. There aren't any in my state, but that's OK.


      • #4
        I am very pleased with the grid I installed in my paddocks. They are still going strong after five years of very heavy traffic.
        There are several manufacturers. Around here, local feed stores and fence companies have started to carry it as well. I would strongly urge you to contact them for a sample of their product and confirm that the sample sent is the same product that you would be purchasing. I have found that some will occasionally change the mix of plastic due to price and availability. This can alter how well the pieces connect and work long term.

        Also - prep work is very important. I wish I'd known that before I installed mine.


        • #5
          Hoof-Grid, Stable Grid, and EquiTerr are the different brands I can think of off the top of my head. We used Hoof-Grid for my paddocks and I'm very happy with them so far after one year. A lot of the choice came down to which product was available locally as getting them shipped can greatly increase the price. I checked with the Stable Grid distributor on the East Coast and she was embarrassed to quote me the price as the shipping cost was just so much! Hoof-Grid was available locally and because of the area and use, I was able to use the lower cost version (they have a standard and heavy duty - the HD one costs more) and that helped too.


          • #6
            OP, you do not say where you are located, but obviously if product is not available to you locally, shipping cost comes into it!
            If you are in the NW, this company does have quite a bit in stock now.
            Homesick Angels Farm
            breeders of champion Irish Draught Sporthorses
            standing Manu Forti's Touch Down RID


            • Original Poster

              Tell me about installation if you don't mind.
              The closest hoofgrid dealer is in Montana. I called Montana, Iowa and finally talked to someone in California about the product.
              I'd like to find some closer.
              The area where I would like to use it is the entrance way to the barn where the horses most commonly enter. That area is sloping and is "structural fill" which is hard when it's dry and like sand when it is wet.
              Does it sound like it would work on such an area?


              • #8
                Getting rid of the slope will be an essential part of any solution.


                • Original Poster

                  Originally posted by airhorse View Post
                  Getting rid of the slope will be an essential part of any solution.
                  It must be perfectly level? If not, what degree slope is too much?


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by airhorse View Post
                    Getting rid of the slope will be an essential part of any solution.
                    I don't agree with this. Yes, if you have a slope that results in water pooling in some area, that would be bad, but if the slope is away from the barn, that should not be a problem. Our dry paddocks are mostly level or slightly sloping next to the barn where we have installed the hoof-grid, then one of the paddocks goes on down a slope -- we haven't done the hoof-grid there yet (only wanted to sink so much money in to the project last year, so covered only the essential part), but the plan is to eventually do it. I remember in our research that the slope that I have was just fine for installing, when the base was properly prepared -- I'd say that area is about a 10 degree slope.

                    The base does need to be firm so there may be some additional prep work required in the OP's example. AdAblurr02 might be able to address that more than me, since she has more experience with the stuff -- in our case, I had an area that was already packed rock which drained well and the base was pretty much ready to go so didn't have to worry about it much. Just got it level, put down the grids, and filled with pea gravel.


                    • #11
                      The OP describes the area as "quite sloping". Some slope for drainage is great, but a heavily sloped area is going to be a challenge.


                      • Original Poster

                        Hmmm, it's more than 10 degrees. I'll have to look and see what I think it is. It's a short distance, about 10 feet that slopes and then levels out. It shouldn't pool any. I could, of course, bring the slope further out, so that the degree of slope is less, but would prefer not to. If it was level, I'd just put stall mats down.


                        • #13
                          That degree of slope will allow any material that is on top of the grid to migrate down to the bottom. You would make yourself a lot of work having to scrape rock up hill.

                          The other concern - brought up by previous posters - is that the pad itself must be even. If there are dips, rock will get underneath and push the grid up at connection points (kind of a tepee effect). This will only get worse when summer sun beats down and slightly expands the grid.

                          There is no perfect footing. This one comes close - but does require some effort to get it right the first time.

                          You may also check around for grid with erosion control, environmental restoration or "green building" companies.


                          • #14
                            Could you terrace the slope?


                            • #15
                              The hoof-grid website shows stabili-grid (one of their products) installed on some pretty steep slopes http://www.hoofgrid.com/stabiligrid_...plications.htm

                              But those steep slopes aren't high traffic type areas - the product is being used for slope stabilization.

                              I think your best bet would be to talk to some of the product people and see what they say about whether it would work for your particular set-up.

                              My sloped portion of the paddock which does not have hoof-grid on it (yet) is currently the "old" way we had done those paddocks -- geotextile with rock on top. Haven't really had a problem with the material migrating, but we did use a lot of rock (I think about 6 to 10 inches of 5/8" minus topped with another 3" or so of pea gravel). That might be a suitable way to go in your case.


                              • Original Poster

                                OK, so I must be wrong about the product. When I have seen something similar, it was just used in a people and car area but had grass growing in it, and some places where the grass wasn't doing well and had died and so was just dirt. You could see the grid under it. I wasn't thinking of putting rocks on it. The rocks migrating to the bottom was why I am not interested in doing the geotextile there.

                                I don't see why it needs rocks on it. I don't see why it wouldn't grip in the structural fill and remain pretty stationary.

                                Terracing a bit is an option. airhorse. Cheaper.


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Coyoteco View Post
                                  OK, so I must be wrong about the product. When I have seen something similar, it was just used in a people and car area but had grass growing in it, and some places where the grass wasn't doing well and had died and so was just dirt. You could see the grid under it. I wasn't thinking of putting rocks on it. The rocks migrating to the bottom was why I am not interested in doing the geotextile there.
                                  You can also use it with dirt fill and grass - I think some of the pictures of the stabiligrid show that, or elsewhere on the website does. But I can't see that working too well for a high horse traffic area, myself.


                                  • Original Poster

                                    Well, as always this have been a very helpful thread. I'm not sure what I'll end up doing now. I don't want to put rocks on it because they will just migrate down as someone said. I'd estimate it to be a 20 percent grade on one and less on the other. "heavy traffic" may be a bit of an overstatement, but there will be horses going in and out on a regular basis and I'd like to fix it once. I certainly have some questions to ask the seller about these.