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Where would you chose to train/base out of?

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  • Where would you chose to train/base out of?

    Given the option if you could go anywhere to be based out of for various reason (best trainers, easy access to events/shows, etc) is there one place above the rest that you would chose?

    I know Ocala is a very popular place for that. But many people seem to be picking GA these days as well. Maybe Aiken?

    What would be your choice and why?

    (asking because my super supportive husband has recently made it an option for me so that I can try to make my way up the levels in this sport! Esp now that I have a few horses that are looking like they could make it to the upper levels! I AM SO LUCKY btw!

  • #2
    Ultimately? The UK.

    But, if we're talking state side, I am very happy here in Middleburg. Hard to beat. Only thing that would make it better would be some time in Aiken every winter.

    I honestly don't know why people stay permanently in Ocala or GA. You have to travel so far the majority of the year to compete. Ultimately, I think those who are in the Middleburg or West Grove, PA area have the right idea. Aiken or Ocala in the winter.


    • #3
      Well why not go for broke and ride with the O'Connors!!!


      • Original Poster

        Haha! Funny Cruiser12! I actually do clinic with them when they are in the area and as my husband pointed out - the base 1/2 the year in Ocala!

        And yellow britches - I would love VA but one of the few things my husband asked is - no or very little snow! haha
        He lived in Buffalo NY for a while and never wants to have to deal with that again. So it needs to stay kinda southern! lol

        Even GA for me would be a huge step up from where I am now (which is middle of no where Louisiana! lol)


        • #5
          Where I am now is pretty great. Two hour drive (or less) to most of the events in Area II. Less than hour to a fantastic group of trainers including Sally Cousins, Phillip Dutton, Boyd Martin, etc. Less than an hour to fantastic hunt country. Hacking distance to the state park. Let the horses have a break Jan/ Feb.

          If only it stayed under 80 in the summer, it would be pretty much perfect.


          • #6
            VA. I was in Ocala once in July. never again.....

            Currently in Charlotte, NC which is pretty nice but a couple hours to most recognized events, mostly hunters around here.

            Third Charm Event Team


            • #7
              Originally posted by southerneventgirl View Post

              And yellow britches - I would love VA but one of the few things my husband asked is - no or very little snow! haha
              He lived in Buffalo NY for a while and never wants to have to deal with that again. So it needs to stay kinda southern! lol

              Even GA for me would be a huge step up from where I am now (which is middle of no where Louisiana! lol)
              There is no where near the amount of snow in either VA or PA as Buffalo NY. I've had years in PA where I never used my snow shovel. We have gotten hammered a few times but it is not typical.

              FL is too far south for the ULs. You really want to be up in Area II or III. I live in West Grove....you throw a rock an hit a good trainer or 4* rider. Plus great farriers, vets etc. There is a reason this is a good area to train.
              ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **


              • #8
                SEPA/northern DE and Maryland/New Jersey area. Some areas of Alabama are pretty event-friendly, too. You could check out North Carolina, too.


                • #9
                  I'm with Bornfree. We call Delaware the Cheap Aiken. We had no snow at all last winter. I'm about 2 hours south of her, but still....I can put my zip code in the USEA horse trial finder and come up with 52 events within 100 miles. 52! Wow. No wonder we have the best in this area at least most of the year. There are so many chances to get good.
                  Proud & Permanent Student Of The Long Road
                  Read me: EN (http://eventingnation.com/author/annemarch/) and HJU (http://horsejunkiesunited.com/author/holly-covey/)


                  • #10
                    forgot about virginia (not all areas).


                    • #11
                      You have an awesome husband.

                      Best of luck wherever you choose!


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by StrawberryFields View Post
                        SEPA/northern DE and Maryland/New Jersey area. Some areas of Alabama are pretty event-friendly, too. You could check out North Carolina, too.
                        I'm sorry. I just have to comment on this. For someone aiming for the upper levels, Alabama is NOT going to be a good place to live. While it may be event friendly, it does not have NEAR the resources places like NOVA/MD, PA, and NJ have. The reason the bulk of the truly good, prolific eventers are based in these places (and why kids from CA, CO, TX, etc flock to them) is because that's where everyone and everything is. I can spit and hit a few Olympians (in at least two disciplines) from where I live. Hell, Jimmy Wofford was in the coffee shop that I frequent not to long ago. Max Corcran (sp?)-Karen's groom- was having dinner at the same restaurant I was a week or so ago. The vets and farriers I use have their hands on the horses you read about. We are KNEE DEEP in it here. This (or PA) is where you come to get good. You don't go to Alabama to get good.

                        Sorry to be harsh. I think unless you come to one of these two or three areas and just see how dense the population of truly world class riders, trainers, vets, and farriers really is, you just can't comprehend it.

                        To the OP- while we will get wolloped on occasion, the snow here is typically minimal. upstate NY is a whole nother ball game. We have winter (Which I hate), but it is tolerable if you are forced to stay here for the duration (why I would gleefully head south...but I HATE winter, even VA winters, with a passion).


                        • #13
                          The Border Country in the UK.
                          Click here before you buy.


                          • #14
                            I really like my home state of Utah. I lived in Polk County FL for almost a year and could not stand it. I would never live in FL ever again....

                            I really like California and Colorado, both seem to be pretty big in eventing.
                            Though my soon-to-be DH works in the video game business and we will most likely end up in Seattle. (I dont know how I feel about that)

                            But like yellowbritches said, the east side is where you want to be to be around the professionals.
                            Eventers of the West
                            A Facebook group I created for Eventers in the West Region of the U.S.
                            Remy - My OTTB Gelding! Love him to pieces!


                            • #15
                              I'm loving it in GA. I'm from Seattle, WA and the scene down here in area 3 is just so much bigger. I've had amazing opportunities down here, and more just keep presenting themselves. I've found wonderful trainers, friends, and network of eventers that are supportive, friendly, talented, etc. I'm about 4 hrs from Aiken, and I plan to get over there to stay and train/compete for some time this winter. Ocala is about 5 hrs the other direction, which makes it a pretty easy haul as well.

                              However... NC (Southern Pines) and VA (Middleburg) seem to be the perfect middle zone where you can get to all the northern events AND all the southern events if you so choose. I absolutely love both of those places... so... one of them may be in our future!
                              Founder & President, Dapplebay, Inc.
                              Creative Director, Equestrian Culture Magazine
                              Take us to print!


                              • #16
                                for you, supportive hubby and upper level horses, Middlburg Va comes in first with Pa a close second.

                                I've lived in Va for 13 years now.

                                I went to collage in Ithaca NY, and we do not get anywhere near the same amt of snow as upstate NY. Compared to upstate Ny we hardly get any snow. I think about 3-4 snowfalls per winter. But I will say that when we get flurries and 2 inches everyone panics and drives like a moron.

                                I ride outside all year long, and my cut off temps is 30 and below. feb is usually the coldest month, and we will have temps in the 20's. If the arena footing gets wet it will freeze overnight and not thaw until 2-3pm in February. I usually hack around for that month.

                                If hot weather is a must, and you can tolerate very hot and humid summers then Aiken, Southern Pines, Ocla are doable but realize that most everyone flees to their northern base after the early spring events down south are over.


                                • #17
                                  I'd vote Middleburg, PA, Southern Pines. And conveniently enough, SP gets very little (if any) snow.
                                  Flip a coin. It's not what side lands that matters, but what side you were hoping for when the coin was still in the air.

                                  You call it boxed wine. I call it carboardeaux.


                                  • #18
                                    I would absolutely go to the Middleburg/Leesburg VA area. Having been to events in that area, I think the level of competition is incomparable. The 5th or 6th place horse in a VA event would easily win most events throughout the rest of the country.

                                    Are you aiming to set-up lifelong permanent residence, or are you guys looking to move somewhere that you can rise through the levels and compete at 4* level within the next few years, and then move somewhere permanent? If this is meant to be a permanent residence I would be inclined to compromise with your super amazing husband and maybe pick Aiken.

                                    I may be really reaching here (or maybe not), but if you're looking toward Rio 2016 don't even think of going anywhere but VA.


                                    • #19
                                      If sky's the limit, Austria. I'm not trying to be an ULR, just a good one. My horse tells me he's from the Piber farm in Stiermark*, I love Europe and Austria (well Germany is good too), and there are personal connections. Ireland would be my second choice.

                                      In reality, I am already there, living in the Upstate SC. Maybe not as many name droppers around, but a bunch of shows within 3 hours (within my budget), great trainers and a decent climate (but for high summer). My criteria is not Rolex, but maybe Training in my life time. I'd love access to BNTs and or BNRs, but I could not afford them so I am happy with the great trainers we got around here (who may not have the Name, but man they got talent)

                                      I came from DE and while there is a little jealousy about how much is around there, the COL compared to the Upstate is a no-brainer for one who pays the bills (lol).


                                      • #20
                                        SoPines. I hate winter. I'm only two hours N of it now, but I'd rather be in it, LOL. Dang work wants me to show up to get a paycheck. I'll skip the name dropping though.
                                        Life doesn't have perfect footing.

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