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Aiken SC Info Please

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  • Aiken SC Info Please

    Sorry for crost post. I posted in H/J but received no response.

    I know Aiken is a big area for eventers, but I was wondering if anyone had any insight as to the H/J scene out there. My husband and I are contemplating moving there in about a year. I mostly do local h/j (jumpers) schooling shows. I wouldn't mind a few A shows, but mostly I do schooling shows, around 3' and hopefully up to 3'6" this summer. (Fingers crossed).

    We are planning a short trip there in January. Any "must do" things to see, places to go?

    Also, when people say the footing is great, is it because of a sandy soil? Does it drain well (quickly)?

    I know people say the summer heat and bugs are bad, and I know that. I'm in Mid-TN now, and we get a hot, humid, buggy summer, too, so it won't be a whole lot different. What's a few more degrees?

    Any other comments/advice would be appreciated.

    Thanks!
    “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
    ¯ Oscar Wilde

  • #2
    Hi, Welcome to Aiken. I love aiken- there is soooo much to do all the time and from many many disciplines.

    you can check out the horse scene a few places:

    the aiken horse: www.aikenhorse.com which is a paper that is done every 2 months about the aiken equine scene. You should definitely pick one up at a feed store or horse oriented store.

    for the h/j scene: try: www.psjshows.com. They have many schooling/ local shows, combined tests, dressage shows and 'A' rated shows as well. They also have a facebook page with great information.

    If your bringing horses down: definitely check out Hitchcock woods.

    The ground has great drainage! A few months back we had like 5 inches of rain in 7 hours and there was standing water for the first time I have lived here when it was coming down. But after a few hours of no rain, you could barely tell it rained, but the footing was great. I don't even have footing in my arena, just the local sand. The only bad part is that it gets dusty and you do have to water it. The only other thing is that the sand makes it a pain to grow grass for pasture- you have to lyme and fertilize it a lot and because it doesn't hold water too well, hope that you get the rain you need.

    It is a great place. Yes it gets hot in the summer and the bugs are bad in the summer, really the horse flys and nats, but it is a great place if you have horses.

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Thanks for the great info. I will definitely check out those resources. For our little weekend visit in January we are not bringing the horses. But I want to check Hitchcock anyway!

      Any nice tackshops you would recommend?

      Thanks, again. I'm looking forward to my visit.
      “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
      ¯ Oscar Wilde

      Comment


      • #4
        There is a good h/j population in Aiken, as well. Most of my massage clients in the area are eventers, but a handful are active in h/j schooling or recognized shows. The Highfields showgrounds is nice and hosts many h/j shows each year. The links already given should get you to the calendars that will list most of the local showing opportunities.

        There is a good-sized tack shop in Aiken that seems to have a good selection (I've only popped in briefly while working in the area ... no serious shopping!). I can highly recommend The Tack Room near me in Camden. Plenty of people make the hour-ish drive from the Aiken area to Camden to visit.

        Aiken is a nice area, and the horse folk mostly seem to be friendly and welcoming, even across disciplines. I think you and your husband will enjoy it there! You will find the summer very similar to mid-TN; it just stretches a little longer down here.
        Equinox Equine Massage

        In the depth of winter, I finally learned that there was in me invincible summer.
        -Albert Camus

        Comment


        • #5
          As coloredhorses said, there is good tack store in town called Oak Manor Saddlery, where you can get most stuff you may need especially if you are a h/j. There is also Boots, Bridles and Britches, which is decent selection, and then there is tack also available at Aiken Saddlery feed store.

          The Tack Room in Camden is AWESOME! and only a little over an hour drive. It has a huge selection of stuff.

          Oak Manor will try and find anything if you need it in particlar. There are 6+ feed stores in Aiken plus one just a short drive in Williston. many hay dealers. And the local shows bring in a variety of tack shops as well in their mobil units like Bit of Britain, Devacoux, and used tack places (i'm only naming a small few , there are many more that come to the area).

          We have our own feed mill that IMO have a great selection of feeds for your horse's needs.

          Comment


          • #6
            I moved to Aiken 2 years ago from the mid west. We had not moved in 22 years. The thing I like about it is that VERY FEW of the horse people here are from Aiken, so they are very welcoming. You don't feel like the 5th wheel trying to get into an already established group.

            I went into shock over hay prices, but have found a way to deal with that. The hunter jumper scene is fairly active, but not on a major scale like eventing. Highfields does a nice job with the PSJ shows so as long as you aren't looking for the big time, you should be quite happy with what you would find there.

            Comment


            • #7
              I'm going down there in a few weeks. Can anyone recommend any reasonably priced hotels? I just need a place to sleep, doesn't need to be fancy, just clean and reputable.
              "We're still right, they're still wrong" James Carville

              Comment


              • #8
                I always have stayed at the Holiday Inn express on whiskey road. Across the way is the fairfield inn, which is nicer, but doesn't allow dogs.
                Hope you give me a ring when you are here. Sorry things didn't work with your daughter.
                save lives...spay/neuter/geld

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by fivehorses View Post
                  I always have stayed at the Holiday Inn express on whiskey road. Across the way is the fairfield inn, which is nicer, but doesn't allow dogs.
                  Hope you give me a ring when you are here. Sorry things didn't work with your daughter.
                  Hey Five = I'm sorry too. I appreciate you taking the time to show her the place. We will only be there for two days...driving the in laws down, visiting with the kid and flying back. I would like to see your place, not sure if I'll have time this time. I've never been to Aiken, so I hope to be able to go again with more leisure.
                  "We're still right, they're still wrong" James Carville

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I went into shock over hay prices, but have found a way to deal with that. The hunter jumper scene is fairly active, but not on a major scale like eventing. Highfields does a nice job with the PSJ shows so as long as you aren't looking for the big time, you should be quite happy with what you would find there.[/QUOTE]

                    Sure would appreciate a PM on just how you managed to deal with the hay price issue! Am heading down on New Years Day- barring any weird and snowy things happening. Was bring a bit of hay in my empty side of the trailer- but just enough to make the transition to a different hay slower on both his stomach and my wallet.
                    OP- if you make it down in January- give me a call, always happy to have a beer or coffee with a fellow COTHer!
                    http://www.Non-InvasiveEquineTherapy.com/
                    http://www.facebook.com/NonInvasiveEquineTherapy

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The Holiday Inn Express is no longer..it is now a Clarion. The Sleep Inn is ok, not anything really cheap in Aiken that is what I would consider clean and safe.
                      "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
                      carolprudm

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Chism,
                        I have the extra bedroom...pm me if you want. I can put you up. Would be good to see a fellow new englander. Plus, I would be more than happy to give you the 5cent tour.
                        I am sure your daughter knows the area better than me, but I must say, I have put miles on these roads in my search for my property.
                        PM me if you want.
                        Hope to see you.
                        save lives...spay/neuter/geld

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Chism,
                          I have the extra bedroom...pm me if you want. I can put you up. Would be good to see a fellow new englander. Plus, I would be more than happy to give you the 5cent tour.
                          I am sure your daughter knows the area better than me, but I must say, I have put miles on these roads in my search for my property.
                          PM me if you want.
                          Hope to see you.

                          You are right mrodes...they did switch last spring. I have stayed there and also the Carriage House in town(which was lovely). Both are super convenient.
                          save lives...spay/neuter/geld

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Thanks, Wolfmare. We'll be there the weekend of January 5 to check out Aiken. Would love to meet up.

                            Thanks, all, for the information!
                            “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
                            ¯ Oscar Wilde

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Wolf, I take my own hay to Aiken with me from here (Saco).....if I don't, I come home to a barn-full and soon it is time to make more! This year I only have 1 trailer going so it will be trickier. My friend Pixie Trix just took a full load of hay down from NY, went home again then goes back to Aiken mid-January. Maybe I have to consider that for this year. Still save $$ by having my own hay down there......
                              Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Not going to have too much room for extra hay, I am going to be pretty full in the truck- I pay $5 up here anyway- but for a good bale- what will I have to pay there Polly? Plus I can feed less than I would here over the winter- I like free feed hay when it is so dang cold. Like today.
                                Where are you guys stabling this year Pol? Would love to meet up with you too! I will be riding right past Pam's new house going to the Wood- if I remember right which street she bought on!
                                Getting pretty excited about the trip- heading out new years eve early- and stopping overnight in Flemington NJ to welcome the new year in with my sis- if the weather co-operates!
                                http://www.Non-InvasiveEquineTherapy.com/
                                http://www.facebook.com/NonInvasiveEquineTherapy

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Hey Wolfie-

                                  We're back at New Bridge again, Feb 1st. Em and I will be sleeping at Gatewood-an easy walk to Maria's! ;-) After our crowd leaves, at the end of March and with luck, we'll be at Stable on the Rail for the first 2 weeks of April.

                                  I cut my own hay here, I fear Aiken hay is beyond imagination. I've always taken my own so am not sure of the cost down there but I *THINK* it is in the double digits. EquineDriver or 5 Horses, can you confirm? I need to get busy with the logistics of this project!
                                  Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Depending on if you want TOA, OA, Timothy, alfalfa it can range from $12/ bale to $22-25/ bale.

                                    It definitely is expensive. When I was in KY this summer, picked up a load of TOA for $5/bale- loaded as much as I could.... luckily on 1 horse is on it, the rest are good on the coastal we get locally.

                                    If someone is thinking of getting a full load down of TOA or OA i might be interested in buying some bales...

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      What does the local coastal run per bale, average?
                                      “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
                                      ¯ Oscar Wilde

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by ParadoxFarm View Post
                                        What does the local coastal run per bale, average?
                                        If you get it from a feed store, I would say $8.00 - $9.00.

                                        If you get it from a farmer, $4.00 - $5.00.

                                        Comment

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