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Living and riding in MA.

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  • Living and riding in MA.

    Just curious about the state and what areas are nice.

  • #2
    Its wicked awesome! LOL sorry, couldn't resist!!!

    I keep my horses on the North Shore, and its nice! Good hacking, good trainers, lots of shows, foxhunting etc. You can ride on Crane Beach in the off season. North Shore is the eastern coastal area north of Boston. Also nice and close to sales tax free NH.

    Whole belly fried clams. Lobster rolls. Commuter rail.

    Depending on where your coming from, traffic and cost of living/ board prices might be a shock.

    Seems that most disciplines are well represented in MA eventing, dressage, H/J, breed shows, saddle seat, cowboy stuff.

    I also think the Groton area is nice, good horse country too. More inland though.
    Unrepentant carb eater


    • #3
      Which part of Massachusetts?

      Along the eastern coast, housing costs and traffic are pretty frightening. If you go an hour north, west, or south of Boston, you can find lovely barns, some with trails and grass turnout. You'd be paying around $600 and up (average, I'd say around $850) for a boarding barn with nice facilities including a decent-sized indoor and professional care for your horse. Private barns are usually less, but they may not have an indoor. And you need access to an indoor; in the winter it is too icy to ride outside, and in the summer, at least this summer, it is too hot to ride in the blazing sun.

      I don't think there are many barns to speak of within an hour of Boston; there are a few within an hour (assuming zero traffic and a strong tail wind) but they're unlikely to have good turn-out or much trail access.

      The north shore is lovely, as the previous poster said, and the south shore has a different, perhaps less traditional-hunt-country feel, but still alot of horsey towns. Areas northwest and west of Boston by about an hour include a few relatively horsey communities, including Groton (which I loved) and Pepperell and Townsend (which I only rode through; don't know them at all). Towns like Harvard, Bolton, Berlin, Lancaster, are getting "further out" and each have their own character, but I've found the trails in Berlin, for instance, to go unmaintained whereas the trails in Harvard and Groton were always maintained and a pleasure to ride on. In Berlin, it's alittle hit or miss and the town/some landowners seem to think it's more fun to bushwack than to do trail maintenance. :-) Framingham has some horsey neighborhoods clustered around Callahan State Park. Other than Callahan, Framingham is mostly strip malls and chain restaurants. But it's not far from the SmartPak store.... Towns like Dover and Sherborn, southwest of Boston, used to be quite horsey but the land prices are so high, I think alot of farms have become McMansion developments. I don't know the southern areas well, but my impression is that there are quite a few backyard barns, as well as nice boarder barns.

      As you move further west, prices go down and acreage and turn-out go up.

      It's been too hot and buggy this summer, but in general I like Massachusetts. But, where you live in the state is really dependent on what lifestyle you're looking for.


      • Original Poster

        Thanks guys. I am currently in Calif. I am looking for quiet, countryside, but close to a decent town or city. I am not at all familiar with MA, but did find a equine job offer there. It is in Lancaster.


        • #5
          Western MA has prices (housing, boarding) that are considerably lower. I live right outsisde of Springfield. While Springfield has seen better days, the countryside is beautiful and areas a little north of us (i.e., Northhampton, Amherst) are just great - lots of super restaurants, entertainment, etc. My boarding facility is right over the CT line, I pay around $600/month for a beautiful facility with indoor arena, miles of trails, excellent care, wonderful people.
          What's wrong with you?? Your cheese done slid off its cracker?!?!


          • #6
            Originally posted by runwayz View Post
            Thanks guys. I am currently in Calif. I am looking for quiet, countryside, but close to a decent town or city. I am not at all familiar with MA, but did find a equine job offer there. It is in Lancaster.
            That's fortunate. Lancaster is kind of a happy medium. There are a few barns, some private, but there is some decent farm land there. Starting in Bolton, there is a "green triangle" of leafy suburban country towns where land/tax prices start to go up significantly. Lancaster is sort of where reasonable prices start. Leominster and Fitchburg are right next door, and both are small cities. Both have cheap rent if that might be an issue for you. Traffic is not too bad there either. South of Lancaster is Clinton, Sterling and a number of other towns sort of North/West of Worcester where there are more barns. Clinton also has very cheap rent. It's a lot like Fitchburg but the poverty-stricken population is of a different heritage.

            If you have any more specific questions about the area, feel free to PM me. I've lived here for 30 years.


            • #7
              And, only 25 minutes to Townsend!


              • #8
                Check out oatsnews.com -- everything horsey in MA in one place. By the way, the owner is based in Lunenburg, not far from Lancaster.