Dream Horse Barn: East Coast Reining Heaven
By Jess Hallas-Kilcoyne
As horse people, we’ve all dreamed about walking out the back door of our house, across the lawn, to a beautiful stable filled with happy horses. Whether your fantasy is of a cozy two stall barn or a 25 stall show facility, functionality and safety come first…which isn’t to say that beauty and luxury can’t be a part of your dream barn too.
Owned by Donald Sobey; Managed by Rhonas Thomson, Pictou County, Nova Scotia
The 12-x-14 foot Loddon stalls are both beautiful and practical, with spinning feeders and hay racks which fill from the alleyway. The arched ceiling with pine boards is a classy feature. Photo courtesy of Sumac Farms
Sumac Farms’s 450-plus picturesque acres in Pictou County, Nova Scotia, is home to 26 horses. Originally used exclusively for pleasure riding and raising reining horses, today Sumac Farms is also a commercial boarding stable that offers lessons, and hosts clinics and shows.
When planning the barn, good ventilation, Easy feeders, hay racks, rubber floors in the stalls, and automatic waterers were the priorities. The barn is built perpendicular to the prevailing winds for maximum airflow and is well insulated with high ceilings.
Dutch doors with the top door open provide better ventilation and allow the horses to hang their heads out. Photo courtesy of Sumac Farms.
The construction process, from uncleared land to finished barn, arena, and pastures, took two years, with an additional eight months spent building the second barn.
Hay chutes are concealed within the walls to minimize dust and in-floor heating eases winter’s chills. Heat sensors are installed throughout the barn and there are heat probes in the hay; both are wired to trigger a siren if they detect overheating.
The grounds are equally impressive, with manicured lawns, acres of pasture, and miles of trails, making Sumac Farm heaven on earth for horses and riders.
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Main Article Photo courtesy of Sumac Farms.