Time for the second post in my building-a-horse-shed series.
After our Thanksgiving break, the concrete was set and ready for posts. We went 8' high on the short end, 10' on the high.
If you are going to have to work in an active pasture, freezing weather can be a nice thing; keeps all the muck nice and firm.
Once the beams were all up we squared the building the best we could and attached braces to keep it all in place.
We toe-screwed the beams and posts together, then added strapping to keep them in place.
Hay House. It gave the barn a really nice, open and airy feeling.
The high side faces east, not a big weather consideration here, but she suggested closing it in a little anyway. A couple of 2X6s on the inside will keep the horses from pushing the plywood out. Stall mats and a 4' gate finished it off.
Since he is a mustang from Eastern Oregon, it could be argued that standing outside in the milder Western Oregon winter is not big deal for him. So why go through the effort and expense to build him a grade A horse house?
First, just because he can stand in the rain doesn't mean he should. As a city boy at heart, I have the idea that everyone should have a dry place when they want it. Second, mud control is one of Phoebe's big things. So for both of us, a wet horse standing in deep mud is not an acceptable approach to animal owning. Since we have committed to having horses, we need to do what we can to treat them right.
Finally, we are trying to build infrastructure that will allow us to follow our interests, and what the land teaches us, to discover what the Homestead is best suited for.
This may well involve more animals. Could be more horses, a goat or two to help with the blackberries, or a couple calves to try raising beef; we are not sure. But we do know that before we get serious about animals we need good fences and safe, dry shelter. The loafing shed is the next step in the progression. We don't really know where we are going, but this is one more important step on the way.