Draft Animal Power – Draft animals and sustainable land stewardship › Forums › Community of Interest › Community › Question for Mr. Rutledge
- December 23, 2009 at 4:50 pm #41215
Sorry if this is not the place to put this, if it needs to be moved, then go ahead and move it.
I had a question about putting in a path in the woods that we have surrounding our farm. It connects to our neighbor who has 100+ acres and he put in paths that are large enough for two riders to be side by side or a team pulling a fore cart so I often use them when the weather is nice. My husband Mark and I want to cut a path into our land that we can use to work the horses or ride on or go over to our friends acreage, and it also gets myself and a few others off the road as this year has been bad with people almost running me over or coming up quickly behind the wagon or fore cart.
Do you do this or can you suggest someone who can help us on this endeavor? I really do not want to use heavy equipment on the land, as I humbly feel it tears the ground up and just makes things look ugly. We had clear cutting on a neighbors land last year and the year before and I honestly can say when I went back there to ride on the trails, everything was gone and I cried! It was horrid!
Please let me know, also was wondering what time of year this would be a good time to do this.December 23, 2009 at 8:48 pm #56409mitchmaineParticipant
i do not want to butt in here. i apologize, but i need to tell you to be careful cutting holes on and off your property. i did just the same thing years ago, using my own woodlot as a woodyard for wood that i cut off neighbors land. the result was a long battle with folks on four wheelers finding trails and going whereever they pleased. it ended with an suv, ford i think, stuck in our swamp with three high school kids in it out for a lark during sugaring season. please be very careful. sorryDecember 23, 2009 at 8:59 pm #56411
Mitch…we thought of that as our neighbor across the road hates us for that very fact, we will not let him on our property, now will any adjoining neighbors onto their property but I can go on them with my horses. I have already had to deal with his attitude, first year we were here my draft mare Smoke was shot in the face and we dug a pellet out of her cheek.
But my problem is the vehicles on our road. It is, for the moment, a gravel road and people come speeding up it. I am thinking safety and if I make the entrances to this path only accessible on our land and our neighbors, it will help a great deal to cut down on who uses it and when. I suppose they could get to it but it would be a bit of a hassle on how far back it will be and I would know immediately if it was from the road or the easement.
Thank you for the advisement, some other people are building down the road about a mile or less and he said they have had big problems with hunters and 4 wheeled vehicles going where they want when they want. Guess the days of manners is long over. 🙁December 23, 2009 at 9:41 pm #56410mitchmaineParticipant
sounds like you know what i’m talking about. sorry about your horse. too bad people can’t just be better. best wishes, mitchDecember 24, 2009 at 2:20 am #56408Gabe AyersKeymaster
Dear Draft Driver in VA.,
We have done such things as a part of normal forest management. A main skid trail fed by smaller trails are put throughout the woodlot. Often those trails are connected at the far ends for pleasure riding and walking. They are sometimes used by ATV’s, hunters, but always at the control of the landowner.
Getting the landowner’s to be in their woods regularly could be beneficial for them to identify and collect edible gourmet mushrooms. But that takes real landowner education.
This is not something I could reasonably price to come and do by the hour. It is just to far away. We live west of Roanoke, Va. on the edge of Appalachia, so we are probably more than two hundred miles away.
I would suggest being careful to put the trails on the contour or as level as you can to get to point a and b. It is hard dangerous work cutting down trees, so be careful that you know what you are doing there.
Also there is a good case for putting up gates to keep 4 wheelers and rambling kids in 4WD’s out of your trails. You just have to have your horses broke to stand while you open the gate or an assistant to be your gate opener.
~December 24, 2009 at 4:34 am #56412
Thank you Jason for your insight and words of wisdom. I am afraid we will end up having our friends do the cutting and some clearing with their tractor, as they did with their land that they cut the trails I mentioned into. I had hoped I could do it in a more natural way first. As for moving anything with my team, I am not qualified to drive them in that capacity and would not even try to do so unless someone who was knowledgeable was with me to work them.
And unfortunately Mitch, yes, I do know what your speaking about…
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