Monday, February 28, 2011


Since we bought this place, I've wanted to build a barn. Sure, the boys have a run-in shed, but the roof is low and since it's in a low spot, the footing gets wet when it rains a lot. Besides, I want a real barn - with a grooming area and a nice tackroom and hay storage that I don't have to worry about when it rains. And while I might LOVE the idea of stalls, they're really not practical for how we keep the boys. Realistically, they need a place where they can get out of the weather, and I would like to be able to separate them at feeding time. It would also be nice to have a stall in case one is needed for layup (knock on wood that'll never happen).

So after a year of discussing, designing, redesigning, and tweaking, we've come up with a plan:

View from the front of the barn. On the left is a tacking and grooming area that I can also pull my truck through to unload hay. The first window is into the tackroom, and the door and the window on the right is into a tool storage room (see below).

The structure is 36 feet wide and 48 feet long - it's basically a giant run-in shed on the back half, which will in turn open out onto a sacrifice paddock area with all-weather footing (hurrah, no more ankle-deep mud!!!). Only the west (left-hand) wall and part of the north wall are solid, since that's the direction storms usually roll in from. The rest is open to keep it cool in our blistering summers. But I have my tackroom, easy-access hay storage, and one permanent stall, along with a large grooming area. The layout is pretty flexible - in an emergency I could use 12x12 panels to make additional covered stalls, I could use part of the grooming area for extra hay storage if we're in a drought situation and I have the opportunity to stock up, etc. The hubby has an area for extra tool and construction materials storage, which he's very happy to have.

We've spent the better part of the last two months getting bids for the project and getting building permits (yeesh that's a pain), so it's been a slow process. BUT... construction finally started this week!

After Day 1: post holes drilled and some roadbase put in to fill in the Grand Canyon. If you look at the right side of the photo you can see the wellhead. Maddy was sure to help out with the string.

Days 2 and 3: Posts are set and most of the roadbase is in. Here's what it will look like as you drive up the driveway.

A slightly closer perspective. There are still a few posts that need to be set, but they were waiting to get the bobcat work done first.

Here's where the tackroom and workshop storage will go. They'll be creating a form for this area on Monday and pouring the concrete on Tuesday.

The sand for the run-in area and the paddock area comes in Monday, along with the wood for framing out the roof. I believe they start on that Tuesday after the slab is poured. So far the only concern is that it takes up to 10 days to get the colored R-panel siding we want, so that may throw a bit of a wrench into things. However, the roofing panels we want are in-stock, so at least we can get the roof up this week.