Tuesday, February 16, 2016

What Do Wednesday; Trailering

Another week, another Wednesday, another blogpost asking my readers What Do?

Recently, a few fellow bloggers have acquired something wonderful; their own horse trailer.

I was incredibly lucky to have my POS (literally awful) stock trailer throughout my teenage and college years as a younger equestrian. Having grown up in the BF of nowhere OH, I think my parental units got overwhelmingly exhausted driving my brother and I all over creation for track, football, scouts, 4-H, school and horse shows. Essentially, the second I turned 15, my father bought a rig and taught me how to drive it. Many hours were spent in parking lots, learning trailering essentials like backing and stopping distances. Then, as soon as I obtained my license at 16, I was on my own. It was terrifying, but also liberating.


I always kind of felt like the equivalent of an equestrian peasant, because I didn’t have a super fancy featherlite, but I was mobile and I could go anywhere, and did. I even trailered my horses to MO with me when I went to college, and back when I came home after. I got really used to driving the trailer and it became second nature, loading up the beasts and hauling out. I soon learned that it WAS expensive, but rewarding and liberating. I also soon learned that literally everyone was begging for rides, but I was always happy to oblige since my POS had room for 3! I remember one time hauling my friends half-perch, my OTTB and then a small Quarab to a show…my poor rig was groaning haha.

Then, the wonderful day came, two and a half years ago that I was able to trade in my POS truck (RIP Big Sexy) and POS trailer for my super hot and powerful SUV and lightweight straightload. Love at first sight. I still love my rig…

my  BA vehicle

my pimpin trailer

Yankee approved
…but now that I’ve been driving a trailer for almost ten years, I’m pretty much over it and I am no longer excited about it. Coupled with a horse that literally hates to load more than anything else in the world, its an exhausting experience and no longer stimulates joy in my brain. I actually dread hauling and all it entails. Checking tires, brakes, connections, emergency equipment, ball & chain safety, maintenance, rust removal, tire replacement, hooking up, etc etc. it is not a freedom I enjoy as much as I should, because I know a lot of people struggle to have mobility.

Moving to OH from MO
These days, I tend to make decisions on trailering out and show/schooling opportunities based off the ease of said trailering. I don’t have the time like I did back in “the day” to spend hours maintaining my rig and preparing for an adventure does take time. Especially because my trailer lives outside, and I don’t go places often, each trip requires extensive checking. For me, this usually occurs after work, at night, perhaps battling cold or rain. Not fun. Also keeping in mind, until recently, Bacardi was an ass pain to load. Like actually took literal hours sometimes or huge fights leaving both of us exhausted. It hasn’t been easy by any means lately.

Example A, bashing face on said trailer 

Example B, 1.5 hours later and dripping sweat

God I miss Yankee more than usual sometimes, and his self loading self 

Now coupled with the discovery that Bacardi easily loads into my trainers trailer, I’ve been using her to haul him everywhere, happy to pay the fee to not deal with any of it.

I know, I am the worst type of person.

So now, most of my decisions are based off “is my trainer going?” instead of “do I feel like going?”, which is huge and weird for me.

For example, I had fully intended to attend the last Lochmoor Snowflake Series schooling show of the year this weekend…but based off the fact that Supertrainer is heading to FL the day before, she will not be taking a trailerful of students to a show here in OH. Therefore, I most likely will not be going. I can ride without her, I’m not one of those people that NEED their trainer to be there at all times, but I have been using her as a crutch to haul. In addition, no one else from the barn will be going, since Supertrainer wont be going, and I LOATHE going to shows 100% alone, now that I’ve experienced the other side (I used to go alone always) .. Especially in the dead of winter, with a semi- fractious horse who doesn’t load well. Not a recipe for success.

So anyways, “luckily” that’s the last show offered until she get back, so I don’t have to worry about transporting until then. But what I want to know is what everyone else does. Do you have your own rig? If so, what is it (I LOVE hearing about trailers) and do you love or hate it? If you don’t how do you find rides? Friends? Trainer? Tell me dear readers, what do?



28 comments:

  1. You're pretty familiar with mine by now but god I love my old man truck and hoopty trailer. After years of being stuck bumming rides they're totally priceless to me. Granted, I like hauling and have zero issue going somewhere alone. It does help that my horse loads and rides great in my trailer.

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    1. It does help. With Yankee, I never thought twice about "how long will this take me to load/how will this effect our mental status etc", we would just go. Anywhere.

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  2. I've got a 4 horse Featherlite with stud wall and a dressing room that I scooped up at a steal of a deal a couple years ago. I absolutely love having my own rig and I'm in the same boat as you. I've been hauling myself everywhere since I was 16 (over 10 years) and I still love the freedom. I spent a few years borrowing trailers and bumming rides because my mom moved a few hours away and I no longer had free-for-all access to her rig.

    The only time I don't like it is when my truck requires expensive repairs (like a new injection pump for $2000)

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    1. Feel that. I just spent $1500 keeping my SUV UTD *cries*

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  3. I have been hauling with other people's rigs for years and last year we finally broke down and purchased a used F150 and an Adams BP straight. I liked my rig and the freedom it offered but I learned how to drive with a GN and really preferred that stability. We made the decision this year to upgrade to an F250 and I now have a 4Star 2H Straight GN. I love love love my rig and don't mind hauling alone at all.

    It's not cheap to maintain your own rig but the freedom is worth it for me.

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    1. The freedom is nice! I take the cost as part of it, even though it sucks

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  4. I have a 2H straightload BP Cotner trailer. No dressing room, no frills, but I freakin' love that thing! Hauls great behind my Toyota Tundra and is perfect for what I need. I love not having to inconvenience other people or beg for rides... I just go. My pony is also the perfect traveler and I like going places by myself. I think the freedom and independence are more than worth the cost!

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    1. I can honestly say I didn't know a tundra could haul!

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  5. I'm lucky that my trainer goes to most shows that I want to go to (or I can pay her to haul me) and my horse is GREAT at loading/unloading/going places alone... but I would love to be able to trailer out to lessons once or twice a week. there's an old straightload trailer hanging out on the property that I mayyyyy see if it's worth fixing up. The BF has a tow package on his jeep and has repeatedly told me that he wants to haul ponies!!! I've been inspired by Amanda's transformation and love a good before and after:)

    I can empathize with having to maintain a truck and trailer and the sort of cost and worry involved with it. It's cool that you can appreciate both sides of the coin!

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    1. My bfs truck has the ability to tow too and even though mine call haul, it can't haul two horses. I keep eyeing his truck haha

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  6. I have trailer anxiety and try to avoid hauling unless necessary... Sad but true. I hate it because I would love to go places but Chrome isn't the greatest hauler and I hate our trailer. It's a really old two horse straight load thoroughbred trailer so it is seven and a half feet tall but narrow and has no center divider (was taken out before we got it) so I can't tie him in it because he can move around too much. So he spends the whole ride turning circles which freaks me out and he scrapes up his butt and face. If I had a nicer trailer I would work on it more but I'm broke...

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  7. I can borrow a truck and trailer if I'm in a bind, but I've never owned my own rig. I just can't afford it all, so part of my horsey-life is always finagling rides. I hate it, but I can afford it. So.

    That bites. I'd really like to get a nice little two horse BP, but it's not on the immediate horizon.

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    1. I can't imagine how tough it is to get rides. I took that for granted. Now with an asshole who doesn't load well, I feel the pain a bit more and it's way more difficult...but still. One day you'll get one!

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  8. As a teenager and college student, I had big Dodge Ram pickup and a steel 3-horse gooseneck trailer; I drove EVERYWHERE. I went cross country schooling, trail riding, shows, lessons. When I left for the great plains of Oklahoma, I left the truck behind because it got like 12 mpg lolz. I eventually convinced a friend to drive back to Tennessee and pick up my horse and my trailer, which was great...except the truck we'd acquired didn't have a gooseneck hitch and wasn't rated to tow that much.

    I stuck it out hitching rides for a few years, which was MISERABLE. It was an ordeal to move the horses from one barn to another. It was impossible to find a ride to any kind of combined training show. I could hitch a ride to a dressage show IF my friend had room in her trailer.

    Last year, we got a new Sundowner 2 horse straight load bumper pull and it is AMAZING. It's roomy and spacious, has a little ramp for the ponies, has a big tack room up front, and is light enough that the truck can pull it. It's been so nice to have my own wheels again, even if it's kind of a pain to do all the maintenance. And as a plus, the more I drive the trailer, the less I have trailering anxiety.

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    1. See I'm the exact opposite, the more I drive the more anxious I get. I've been in soooooo many close calls I am like a balls of nerves everytime now. But I second going EVERYWHERE when younger. It was so fun and freeing! I don't know how my parents weren't anxious about that though, 16,17,18 etc is SO young to be driving a trailer haha

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  9. I can't really comment on anything trailer-related because I've never driven a truck and trailer and don't have any plans to ever haul myself anywhere buuuuuuut I wanted to point out that Honda CR-Vs are the shit. I actually had a silver one when I was in college and loved it, it's probably my favorite car that I've ever had. So, there's that haha :)

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    1. Hondas are legit amazing. I love my SUV thing I have

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  10. Since we're the only ones who do anything other trail ride at my barn, if we didn't have a trailer, we'd never go anywhere. We have a 2 horse straight load Hawk trailer. We actually spent a few hours last night taking apart the inside of the trailer to make it look like a stock trailer to try to get permission to use it for adopting a Mustang. We'll see how that goes and we might have to hire a trailer service.
    I personally hate driving the trailer and spend every moment tense and miserable. If I did board at a fancy training barn, I would totally be down for paying trailering fees to have someone else do it.

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    1. Same, I am always so anxious anyways now- way too many close calls or crazy mishaps hauling

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  11. Kind of, sort of on topic, but have you ever had to tell people you won't trailer them? I have a sinking feeling I'm going to be put in this position this year. Not that I don't have the room in my trailer, I just don't want the responsibility of hauling someone else's horse and then having to work around that person. Any advice on how to shut a bitch down?

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    1. Tell them your trailer is haunted. Or get super creepily enthusiastic & make this person friendship bracelets because you're now 'trailering BFFs'. Or puncture your own tires? Quote them a ridiculously high price that they will refuse?

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    2. I second a high quote haha. Or just say my insurance doesn't cover it. I understand that. I have crazy anxiety hauling now and hauling other beasts only increases that. I'll help a friend, but I've gotten shafted on gas so often I really don't want to be nice anymore.

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  12. My mum owns the float (what we call trailers here) & towing vehicle in my situation. The car is... I dunno... the blue kind? Not much grunt, ideally needs a bigger engine (or whatever. I know zilch about cars) The float is an extended height, extended length El Dorado Rancher with chipped paint & we love it. Our tallest horse is no bigger than 15.1 so they have heaps of room. They all self-load & self un-load, & they whinney to the float when they see it like it's a part of the family :D
    I love taking them out. My own wish is that I had a truck to take all 3 out at once... or a 3 horse angle load Crisfloat.

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  13. We have had our own truck and trailer since 2009 - bummed rides before then and will never go back to that! Truck is a 99 F250, diesel, lots of miles and still going strong. Trailer we bought used - Sundowner, extra tall, 2 horse straight load with a ramp and escape doors on both side, small front tack/dressing room. Love them both!

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  14. ha i have a cheap-o economy bumper pull stock trailer (purchased new so it's at least in pretty great shape) and an old ass high mileage chevy bought on craigslist. and.... i pretty much love it and haul out 2-3x weekly at present. usually i have a friend with me, but often it's just me and the super mare.

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  15. Growing up we had a truck and trailer and it was the bees knees. Senior year of highschool my mom sold it. I didn't have money to show then so I didn't mind. But I had to pay a hauler to get Ries to Idaho from Cali. And I can't bum a ride to save my life so if trainer doesn't go then I don't go. If it is an emergency and Ries has to go to the hospital or something the BO will take us. BUt you can see light through the trailer floors which freaks me out so I avoid their trailer at all costs. Hopefully getting a 3 horse bp classic horse trailer at the end of the year that was my old horse trainers. Super nice, just need a rig

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  16. I've never had my own truck/trailer, but there are many times it's actually easier for me to get others to haul for me. Although once in a while, it would definitely be nice!

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