Outdoor Sand Pen - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 02-10-2013, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2012
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Outdoor Sand Pen

Hello, Just looking to see if anyone has any experience building outdoor riding arena?

We are located in Southwestern Ontario Canada and have a really good natural clay base. We have heard to just pack it really good with a slight slope for drainage and use about 4" deep of Limestone Stone Dust, let it settle and then add about 2 inches of sand? We plan on using our arena for reining. Any aggree? dissaggree? additional things or consider or comment?

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post #2 of 3 Old 02-10-2013, 03:37 PM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Bear Creek, Wa
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2 inches of sand for footing is not enough. Even if you compacted the base really well, the impact of the horse from leisurely use, let alone sliding stops, will churn and tear up through only 2 inches of sand. Definetly consider adding an all weather footing additive like recycled rubber or some other synthetic like GGT footing and increasing the depth to not less then 2.5-3 inches.

Also, a graded slope is not enough, you will want to install a French drain at the lowest part of the slop directing water out of the arena completely.

Hope this helps!
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post #3 of 3 Old 02-24-2013, 04:30 PM
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: S.E Wisconsin
Posts: 93
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Your base build up is OK, but... Two inches of sand is not enough, I agree with the previous post. You'll wear threw that very quickly and be running on the base underneath. Also you need to factor in wind erosion, every windy day, when the sand is dried out, you're going to lose sand, plus all the sand that going to get knocked out of the arena during use.
When we built our outdoor when have a good 6-8 inches thick of sand. You wouldn't need to go that thick. With the arena using for reining practice and the sudden fast stops. You'll need go go thicker then 2 inches. Our outdoor is slightly higher that the surround ground, just by a couple inches to help with drainage.
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