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DC & Riding

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  • DC & Riding

    I have read through the previous posts about this, but was hoping for any updated info.

    Considering a move to DC for BF's job (needs to be close to Capital Hill unfortunately as hours are not set so metro isn't an option). I'm a teacher, so there is some flexibility with where I can potentially get a job... as in, I could try to find a school close-ish to the farm.

    What areas inside the city are the best for still getting SOMEWHERE to the horses?

    What barns are nearby? Is it easier to commute into MD or VA? Ideally I would be down to 2 horses, needing an indoor with good footing and conditioning. I would be fine to haul out on weekends to jump or for lessons, so dressage farm is fine.

  • #2
    If he's on the Hill, your best bet is Southern MD. Northern VA is a clusterf*** of traffic (plus you'll have to cross the Potomac to get there) and the nearest barns with indoors *and* conditioning spaces are in Loudoun County, so you'll easily spend 90+ minutes driving one way during rush hour.

    Currently I board in Fairfax, which is a 35 minute drive w/o traffic from DC -- but I've given up an indoor, trails, and place to do canter sets for convenience. I usually have to haul my guy down to Lorton to do any sort of conditioning work.
    Road to the T3D
    fri [fri:] fritt fria (adj): Free
    skritt [skrit:] skritten (noun): Walk


    • #3
      It's not hard or all that expensive to get to the Hill on off hours via a car or uber. My recommendation is to live in upper Northwest (Cleveland Park, Tenleytown, AU Park areas) close to River Rd, and take River out to Poolesville, MD. There are quite a few good dressage and eventing barns out that way with the amenities you are looking for.

      Like FrittSkritt, I'd never recommend anyone try to get from DC out to the Middleburg area during rush hour. Northern Virginia is a nightmare of sprawl, traffic, and traffic lights (or expensive toll roads).

      Plus, if you are a teacher, the schools in Montgomery County, MD are excellent and would put you in good proximity to the barn.


      • #4
        Job - school teacher, Montgomery County has very good school system and I believe they're hiring. Living near Capitol Hill can be v. expensive so I agree with the poster who suggested areas in NW DC which are close to the DC Mont. Co line. Chances are BF won't have parking so he'll need to use mass transit or car pool.

        Traffic/commuting is a headache in this area, however, despite the traffic/commuting headaches and all the urban areas, the area does have a pretty darn good equestrian community - lots of options.


        • #5
          It depends totally on timing. I live on cap hill and traffic to Waredaca, where I board, is easy in the am and horrible in the pm. So I think it’ll be tough if you are teaching in the city. If you are teaching in MoCo though, the am commute out will be easy, and then you could hit a barn out there after school. Coming back in isn’t bad after 7
          The big man -- my lost prince

          The little brother, now my main man


          • #6
            I've commuted to just outside cap hill (Navy Yard) for over a decade; it's not hard from NoVA (northeast PW county). I've picked up slugs (carpool) or slug, so the express lanes are free.

            I haven't had a horse up here for years (no saddleseat in DC ) so I'm not too up on the local barns. There aren't many in eastern NoVA though. There are some smaller barns scattered around south Fairfax county, and there's the park in Lorton.

            FYI, METRO can be a crapshoot. There's a reason exists. If hubby is planning on using it, they've got major shutdowns planned next summer in NoVA.
            Visit my Spoonflower shop


            • #7
              I agree that Northern VA is a nightmare. Montgomery county is the place to be, although far from Capitol Hill. Waredaca is pretty awesome, and there are loads of other farms near by.

              If you look into southern Maryland, Davidsonville, Upper Marlboro or Huntingtown are the big pockets of horsey places.


              • #8
                Any good boarding facilities near Waldorf, preferably with a decent dressage trainer? Asking for a friend who lives in Alexandria.
                Building and Managing the Small Horse Farm:


                • Original Poster

                  Thank you everyone so much! Contractually I am obligated to stay in my position through at least next year... and this is all very tentative, but I very much appreciate your input!


                  • #10
                    My barn has a boarder who lives on the hill and it takes her about 40 min at low traffic times. We are in MD - Harwood. There are a few eventing barns around that area.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Libby2563 View Post
                      Any good boarding facilities near Waldorf, preferably with a decent dressage trainer? Asking for a friend who lives in Alexandria.
                      I live in Alx and Harwood is a good little pocket of Maryland with some nice farms. It's about 45 min from me. What is she looking for?


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Frivian View Post
                        I live in Alx and Harwood is a good little pocket of Maryland with some nice farms. It's about 45 min from me. What is she looking for?
                        Quality boarding and a dressage trainer (her riding level right now is about 2nd-3rd but she's been shopping for 4th/PSG horses). She has a retiree that she could either board at the same barn or a nearby retirement-type place, if there's one available. Know anything about this place? Thanks!
                        Building and Managing the Small Horse Farm:


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Libby2563 View Post
                          Any good boarding facilities near Waldorf, preferably with a decent dressage trainer? Asking for a friend who lives in Alexandria.
                          What part of Alexandria are they in? If anywhere in Alexandria City, I'd suggest going north out to Poolesville area. I tried a couple times to get over the bridge around 6pm to go visit a barn out in PG County, and the traffic was absolutely brutal.


                          • #14
                            I lived in Fairfax, N Arlington, and Alexandria over the last 15 years and worked downtown (NW). Most recently we lived in Alexandria (highly recommend Del Ray) and I pretty easily commuted to Harwood MD. There are some amazing eventers and dressage riders/trainers out that way, it's a great community. I loved boarding in Aldie VA too but it's not feasible if you live close to downtown. Feel free to message me!


                            • #15
                              I work in DC (next to the White House) and commute home to Montgomery County each day where my horses are. I highly suggest going the MD route... it's not ideal, but if you're a teacher and have some sort of flexibility that will be a definite game changer for you. However, going the VA route is most likely going to be worse than MD. I-270 is rough going into MD any time after 3/3:30pm on a week day until about 6:30, but it's manageable, especially if you take River Road up toward Poolesville as a previous poster suggested.

                              There are plenty of great barns in Potomac/Poolesville. I'm happy to recommend some if you need them! I'm actually moving one of my horses at the end of July into the Poolesville area.