It's been a while in the offing, but it looks like I'll be moving to Arizona. I'm getting kind of tired of snow, know what I'm saying?
This is a bit of a long term thing and looking at something in the next few years (Yeah, LONG TERM! It takes a while to plan and execute a move with horses).
SO I was mostly poking my nose in to find out what kind of events go on in the Phoenix area, and wondering what kind of commutes I can expect from the northeast corner to chandler or queens creek to chandler. I'm told north east corner is.. pretty ughy..
hawse wrote: I'm told north east corner is.. pretty ughy..
It's funny you should say that, since I'll be moving from the northern part of the state to northeast Phoenix in a little over a week xD As far as it being "ughy", I think it depends on where exactly you're looking. It seems to change very quickly as you drive along different roads. I don't know the area all too well though, maybe someone else can describe it better.
I think you'll be looking at quite a long commute down to the Chandler area, considering my work commute will be at least 30 minutes and that's just going to downtown. Tempe or Mesa might be better suited for that.
I best load the ipod up with some good music then. :)
Yeah, I was getting that from someone new to the area. Dunno if surface roads will make a difference or if it's just the major freeways like 101, 202 and 17 that get all clogged up. I'm told the commute from chandler to queens creek is about 30 minutes, and not a big deal, but, I truthfully don't know. Properties where I can keep horses out there though are spendier than they are in the north east corner outside the north east corner of 202.
I'll have quite a few years to figure it out, though.
hawse wrote: I best load the ipod up with some good music then. :)
Yeah, I was getting that from someone new to the area. Dunno if surface roads will make a difference or if it's just the major freeways like 101, 202 and 17 that get all clogged up.
They end up being about the same I found. Of course, what killed surface streets for me were the red light and speeding cameras. I try to obey the law, but I hate those things (and I have a strong feeling the yellow is too short on red light camera intersections).
Yeah, when I was living in san jose, the freeways would be stop and go traffic, but the surface roads, although taking 'longer' kept moving all the time so no stop and go sitting in traffic idling waiting for it to move. Mentally I think that's a bit easier to deal with. OHH! Traffic cameras for extra added revenue huh? hmmmmmm... I'll have to remember that one too.
I have a TON of stuff to learn about the area. I get there pretty often, pretty much every august and then a few more times throughout the year.
Also trying to see what kind of activities the fuzzeh's get up to in that region. Looks pretty active from what I'm seeing!!
True true.. The more I look into it the more serious I get about it. I'm finding all sorts of properties that will meet my needs .. .NOTHING like the wooded green 80 acres I have now, but, all within a decent drive of work and I can be home every single night.. that's worth giving up the 80 acres for... That and if anything goes horribly wrong with my career there at the company I work for, i can always find a new gig pretty quickly.
so.. yeah... :)
In the mean time I need to find out things about water wells, can you irrigate, what does it take? how much does it cost? etc etc etc how much is alfalfa hay, how many bales a year will I need allllll.. that kinda stuff.
Yay, another furry with horses! What kind of riding do you do?
Tempe, Chandler & Gilbert all have horse property, but are pretty much land-locked, so you'd have to haul out to trail ride. And pricey, of course. In Queen Creek, you could find property that'd let you ride out, plus San Tan Park is out there and is good riding. If you'll be working in Queen Creek, living in Apache Junction is also an option. There's both land-locked and ride-out areas there, and Usery Mtn Park, around Goldfield, and of course the Superstitions, are all good riding. There's still some horse property in Mesa, too, and Lehi as well, although again land-locked.
As far as traffic, the issue in Queen Creek is the lack of freeways. It's still mostly two lane roads with stop signs every mile. Even on weekends, the traffic tends to suck. In some of the more newly-developed areas, there are now 4-lane roads and traffic lights, so it flows better, but those also tend to be around the new subdivisions, so heavy traffic. And to get out of the area, you mostly still have to hit the 2-lane, stop-signed roads.
I live down outside of Maricopa, in Pinal County, and commute to Tempe for work. It's 45-50 miles OW, but mostly all freeway/highway. Horse property is cheaper down there, with most of it being places you can ride out from home, which is why I ended up down there after years of boarding in Tempe, Mesa, AJ, & Gilbert.
hawse wrote: In the mean time I need to find out things about water wells, can you irrigate, what does it take? how much does it cost? etc etc etc how much is alfalfa hay, how many bales a year will I need allllll.. that kinda stuff.
QC probably still has properties that are on wells, although I don't know if there's still any water haul out there. I'd have to ask a friend who used to live out there. Make sure you have water rights - not all properties do. Chandler/Gilbert/Tempe/Mesa/most of AJ are all on city water now. Areas that have irrigation have it; irrigation districts can be very restrictive of allowing anyone not already in to buy in. Find out if your property prospects have irrigation or not. Odds are you won't be able to add it after the fact. I've no idea of the rules on using your own well to irrigate with, but given the often poor water table down here, you could be risking running your well dry doing that.
Alfalfa by the bale is pricy, and bermuda is pricier -- the last few years I don't think alfalfa's gone below $12/bale in summer, and as high as $17 in the winter (mind, these are 3-wire, not 2-wire bales, weighing anywhere from 80# to 120#, depending on source). Some places you can get Teff, but it's in the same price range. Also, many horses don't handle the high-protein content of straight alfalfa diets. Some do fine, but be aware of it. With the lack of pasture, expect to feed hay (in some form; many folks feed alfalfa or alfalfa-blend pellets out here) year round. Unless you have only 1 horse, anything less than a full acre won't grow enough even with irrigation to be much more than boredom-filler. One acre might not even be enough for one horse - and during irrigation and a few days after, while it soaks in, the pasture can't be used. Horses tromping through freshly irrigated areas will turn it to mud that dries hard-packed and kills the pasture.
As for how many bales you'd need, depends on how much you feed per horse per day. And it depends on the weight of your bales. A flake off an 80# bale weighs less than a flake off a 120# bale. So from an 80# bale, you might need to feed 2-3 flakes to equal the weight of 1 flake from a 120# bale - which is going to radically affect how fast you go through any given bale!
If you want more info on desert horsekeeping, and the equestrian scene in the Phoenix-metro, hit me up. Desert horsekeeping is very different from how it's done elsewhere, and there are hazards here other places don't have (look up sand colic). Also, know that moving horses into the desert in the summer months can be brutally hard on them; we try to only bring them down between Oct-Apr, given an option.
.[Yay, another furry with horses! What kind of riding do you do?]
WHen I rode, it was mostly hack dressage with a percheron I had. Then here in missouri it's been trail rides, but these days I don't ride anymore. I find that as I age the horses get a lot taller and the ground a lot harder.. and apparently gravity pulls harder to. I'm usually at MACH I by the time I hit the ground. :) So now , if I can get the time, which living there I WILL get the time since I'll be home every night, I'll start working my ponies with long lines and start using them to pull itty bitty teeny tiny sulkies. :)
..[places to look at trail riding and being land locked]
I'm thinking being land locked won't be THAT big of an issue for me as I dont' really do trail riding anymore. And most of the sulky work I'll be doing and long rein work I'll be doing would likely be in a small arena or large round pen. WOn't need an arena, as long as I have something a hundred feet long and 30 feet wide that I can work the ponies in. Mostly I'll be trying to get something within a one hour commute of Chandler, which is where I'll be working with a decent amount of land (i'd LIKE at least 3 acres, kind of need at least 3 acres, really, 5 would be ideal.) And having a shop and some kind of horse facility already on it would be a perfect starting point.
..[ traffic, where you work, where you live and commute distance/travel time]
Awesome! THAT is exactly the area I'll be working in (well, south of you a bit in chandler) and pretty much exactly the area I have been looking for properties in. I am also looking out towards apache junction. This is huge move for me, I've been at this place in missouri for ten years which is longer than I have ever been anywhere. I'll miss it a great deal, but I WONT miss the winter. In the end though unless I can negotiate a better salary, I likely won't be ABLE to do this at all. So honestly, this is all part of a long term plan and to see if I can make happen what I want to make happen in a way that works for me.
Gotcha. Water rights isn't something I strictly need, really, as long as I don't have to worry about somehow having the right to own animals due to water restrictions. That's a thing in colorado. You want horses? You better be damn sure that horse property you are about to buy has the water rights you need to own horses because even if you have a well, you are not allowed to pump out the extra water to water your horses if you do not have the rights to do so. Crazy stuff! Hopefully it's not like that out there, or if it is, I need to know about that before I buy anything.
..[cost of feeding'
Yeah, I used to buy hay in california year round for my horses. Had three percherons, two tw's, a handful of ponies, an arabian.. I spent about $4000 a year in hay.. but would buy it all at one time and got it trailered in. That helped a bit, allowed me to get it cheap at $11 to $12 a bale for three string 100+ pound bales of alfalfa.
Out there the big gotchas in feeding were Enteroliths in the gut and sand colics.. which is why we never fed on the ground and only used hay feeders.. SOme of them made out of tires with boards bolted onto the bottoms of them.
Thankfully we never had problems with horses and alfalfa, except if they got too much of it, they'd start to get fat.. So yeah, dry lotting some of my critters like Belle our donkey and Ibn the arabian gelding would help them a lot.. Amirah too. she gets a big chunky on teh graze out here. So yeah, I would try pretty hard to buy enough hay to last the year when it was cheaper.
Also, looks like irrigated pasture is simply not a practical thing out there, which is really also very good to know. In CA we'd have graze the first few months of the year from the monsoons and then it'd be over. Mostly had to give them alfalfa all year round. I expect the ponies to not require much hay at all, based on my past experiences with feeding alfalfa in California.
..[desert horse keeping, equestiran scene ]
Awesome. Thank you for all the excellent information and having ttaken the time to write that all out. I appreciate it. I'll start looking up desert horse keeping on line and seeing what other information I can find on that. ANd yeah, I know about sand colics.. nasty stuff.. Used to give the horses psillium twice a year just as a preventative.. put them on it with molasses for a few days to get them cleaned out.