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Horse Boarding in/around Washington D.C. Area?

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  • Horse Boarding in/around Washington D.C. Area?

    I am moving to D.C. for the summer, and bringing my mare along. I am looking for a boarding facility in/around D.C. but no more than a 40 minute drive preferred. Must have option for private turn out, and be able to take hunter/jumper/eventing lessons. I want it to have great care and staff, but I am not necessarily looking for any place super formal. Example: I don't want to be told to go home if I wear a polo or short sleeved shirt.

    Thanks!

  • #2
    What time of day do you anticipate heading to the barn? 40 minutes during rush hour may only get you a few miles out of town (where there simply isn't enough land for many barns), but if you're driving during off hours that opens up your search radius a decent amount.

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    • #3
      Where in DC will you be living and working? In the city proper or outside it in MD or VA? And what time do you intend to go to the barn? All those factors can make a huge difference in where you will want to board. Though keep in mind, traffic is bad and 40 minutes is not a lot of time around here.

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      • #4
        As others mentioned, this area offers plenty of places to board but a realistic commute is going to be at least an hour from DC. Where are you living and working? Depending on that you'll need to factor whether you'll be driving to work or taking metro. Parking spaces are a premium in DC so unless you're pretty high ranked employee it'll be metro. Which can cut into barn. We have plenty of hunter jumper and eventing barns but odds are you're not going to find one that does Hunters, Jumpers and Eventing. Maybe Hunters/Jumpers or Eventing and jumpers. It also sounds like you might just be here for the summer?

        If you can let us know where you'll be living and working, there will be more suggestions as some places are easier to get to than others depending on where you live and.or work.

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        • #5
          Lots and LOTS of DC area threads on COTH to research that will offer good insight into the commute/location/drive time/work schedule discussion, all of which you must know in order to best move forward. Having just left there I know it's not just a matter of saying "I'm moving to DC I want to board within 40 minutes." Know where you're working, what your work schedule is, where you'd likely be living, your commute options, and triangulate options from there.
          War Horse Blog
          Blogging for The Chronicle of the Horse

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          • #6
            Agree with the other posters that just saying "DC" isn't enough information to provide meaningful specific suggestions, unfortunately.

            http://equiery.com/ is a Maryland publication that comes out monthly. Check out boarding ads under general classified, and the display ads throughout the publication. Virginia has a similar publication I think(?)


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            • #7
              Honest to goodness your best bet is to pick the barn out and then find a job and housing based on where that barn is. The traffic here is like nowhere else except maybe Atlanta and Los Angeles. My best friend from grade school moved back after 30 years. Her 5yo daughter is notably talented in a certain style of dance. The teacher in their old city recommended a studio in McLean. They were moving into a rental on the border between Loudoun and Fairfax Co. I warned her about the distance to the studio. "But, it's only 12 miles away!" Uh huh. And it will take 3 hours to get there some days. Really want to do that 4 times a week? They tried it a few times and promptly found another studio closer by. I've ruled out dating perfectly lovely men from online dating apps more times than I can count based solely on where they live in the DMV. I could get to Lancaster Co in PA easier than I can get to Alexandria even though the latter is only a third the distance of the former. I absolutely refuse to get on the Beltway for anything less than the love child of young Brad Pitt and Jason Momoa!

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              • #8
                Every time I go to, through, or around Washington, I am astounded at the traffic. I have experienced Los Angeles traffic due to having had a crappy commute there, and drive through Atlanta fairly frequently these days, which are bad enough, but Washington is a world unto itself. My husband and I met some friends there a couple of years ago and went to dinner eight miles from where we were staying. Three hours later, we arrived at the restaurant. And this was not unusual traffic for the area by any means.

                I've gotten to the point that I'll go very far out of my way to avoid going anywhere near Washington. When we want to do stuff right there, we leave the car as far away as we can and get around by other means.

                Rebecca

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                • #9
                  I live in DC right now and ride, so can share my experience. Wanderosa's suggestion is a good one. Based on where you work, pick a barn and then figure out where you could reasonably live.

                  What has worked for me personally is this: I live in SW near the Wharf and ball park, and work from home. Taking Suitland Parkway I can reach facilities in Upper Marlboro, MD in 35 minutes and Bowie, Harwood, Davidsonville in 45-60.

                  The traffic is indeed terrible, so even working from home I still have to ride at either 7pm or before 3pm if I don't want to spend half my day in the car. That being said, there is SO much horsey stuff to do in this area.

                  If you're working in the northwest part of the city, you might be able to live in Silver Spring MD and take the metro to work. There are quite a few places to board out that way. And at least it'll be summer so you'll have the light and best weather in the evenings anyway.
                  Disclaimer: My mom told me that people might look at my name and think I had an addiction other than horses. I don't; his name was Bravado.

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                  • #10
                    Concur with all of the above. Having an inflexible 9-5 work schedule, living and/or working in downtown DC, and wanting a H/J/E program (and good turnout!) are all going to make it hard to find a barn within that time range. We might be able to help if you give more details?

                    I know of many weekend warriors in the DC area for exactly this issue.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      OP is states they are moving for the summer - which makes me think they 1) have a job already or 2) have housing already. At any rate those of us who live here are happy to help but more information is needed

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        OP says she is coming to DC for the summer, meaning 2-3 months perhaps? As a BO of a h/j & dressage barn very close to DC, I would add the following point. Most of the well-run facilities within a half-hour of DC (in no traffic) are full with waiting lists. My farm only has 14 stalls and is usually full, as we are now. But even if we weren't, we would not take in a horse for 2-3 months. Too much disruption to the herds and possibility of spread of disease. My point is if she wants to find good care for such a short period of time she is probably going to have to go an hour outside the city in no traffic, which means 2 to 3 hours driving time at rush hour.

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                        • #13
                          DC area traffic is such that your best bet is to pick out a barn and -then- pick housing and job. It is up there with LA and Atlanta for the worst traffic in the US. We live almost 50 miles west of the city proper.

                          My daughter's middle school is about 10 miles east of our house in the 'burbs near Dulles airport. She had a concert at 7:30 recently. They asked for the kids to be there at 5:30. I dropped her off and headed for the shopping center 3/4 miles away. FInished my errands at 5:45 and sent a mobile order to the Starbucks another 1/2 mike beyond. Heading back west towards the school, I sat for 15 minutes at the 4 way stop. Total time to go 1.5 miles at rush hour? 60 minutes.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            If I were coming to DC only for the summer, I would leave the horse at home. More hassle than it is worth and there are plenty of other horse related things to do.
                            Where Norwegian Fjords Rule
                            http://www.ironwood-farm.com

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by IronwoodFarm View Post
                              If I were coming to DC only for the summer, I would leave the horse at home. More hassle than it is worth and there are plenty of other horse related things to do.
                              This, not to mention many places won't be able or want to take on a boarder for a couple of months

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by BravAddict View Post
                                I live in DC right now and ride, so can share my experience. Wanderosa's suggestion is a good one. Based on where you work, pick a barn and then figure out where you could reasonably live.

                                What has worked for me personally is this: I live in SW near the Wharf and ball park, and work from home. Taking Suitland Parkway I can reach facilities in Upper Marlboro, MD in 35 minutes and Bowie, Harwood, Davidsonville in 45-60.

                                The traffic is indeed terrible, so even working from home I still have to ride at either 7pm or before 3pm if I don't want to spend half my day in the car. That being said, there is SO much horsey stuff to do in this area.

                                If you're working in the northwest part of the city, you might be able to live in Silver Spring MD and take the metro to work. There are quite a few places to board out that way. And at least it'll be summer so you'll have the light and best weather in the evenings anyway.
                                I live in Texas but grew up in Maryland. I miss the density of the horse stuff SO much. We have a fair amount here but it's just not the same. And I miss the Equiery! I check in it every so often.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  there are a few boarding schools in the area with programs that allow outside boarders during the summer because their boarding students with horses leave to go home. that might be a good bet because many barns wont allow boarders for just a few months. i know the madeira school has some outside boarders, very well run program with excellent care for horses. not fancy at all. im not sure if other schools in the area do the same thing, but i would assume at least some do

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    If you're still looking, I highly recommend Cut to the Chase/Jess Fortin: https://www.c2cshowstables.com/home
                                    She responds really promptly on Facebook also: https://www.facebook.com/jcut2chase/

                                    It is a 55 minute drive from Georgetown, which is pretty miraculous for the area - note that this time estimate is contingent on being strategic in your timing/aggressive in your driving (lol). Every horse gets private turnout (minus the babies/retirees), but they can see all their buddies nearby. It's a pretty nice setup because the trainer is a great rider and can ride for you during the week, based on which board option you choose. Lessons taken a la carte are $75, which is a great deal for an hour private lesson in this area. There isn't an indoor but the footing is unbelievable in its ability to absorb rain and even after a monsoon, you can still ride the next day. It's remarkable. Also, Jess used to event in the big leagues, so she has an extensive background in the disciplines you mentioned.

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