Horse Trailer Organization for the Travel Pro
Let’s face it the night before traveling with your horse is always a bit hectic. Between tracking down tack for your horse and clothes for your self then filling hay nets, bathing and braiding; saving time wherever possible will ensure you get a good night’s rest. Horse trailer organization can take the stress out of travel. Stocking up your trailer with the basic items that you know you will always need while on the road increases efficiency. Having a place for everything and everything in its place will ensure that you can head out in confidence when it is time to hit the road.
Tools of the trade
Beyond having a plethora of bridle racks, tack hooks and sturdy saddle racks, there are a lot of options to help keep your trailer well organized here are some of my favorites that stay in my trailer all of the time allowing me to load and go!
Trailer Door Organizer – I can’t live without mine! I mostly ride and
show out of my trailer so having my trailer door caddy eliminates extra footsteps while I tack/untack groom and prep myself and my horse for show. It is the perfect place to keep ear plugs, whitening sprays, braiding tools, drinks, horse treats, liniment and spare hardware. I have a magnetic snap on my door to hold show numbers and day sheets. I like the Professional’s Choice Trailer Door Organizer model which comes in two different sizes or try the Country Pride 10 Pocket Organizer
Travel friendly mounting block – not only is this a great way
to get in and out of your trailer with ease, but when it comes time to mount up, your horse will surely thank you. The Sportote Two Step Mounting Block is both lightweight and strong – making it a perfect choice for travel!
Locker Mirror – Whether trying for perfect hunter hair or just making sure your stock tie pin is straight it is helpful to have a mirror. Look for magnetic or self adhesive options at your local department store.
Main Frame Organizer – A great option for base model horse trailers and stock trailers that may not have come with
saddle racks. This storage system
allows you to mix and match saddle racks, baskets and tack hooks as needed
for a custom solution. The pre-drilled
the main frame can be
permanently mounted to
the trailer interior. Add a bungie tie to each of the saddle racks to keep saddles in place while on the road. All attachments can be moved or removed for those times when you need to
haul more than horses in your stock trailer. This is also a great solution for
tack stalls at the show or your
tack room at home.
Clean Water – Perhaps this seems silly but having access to
clean water at the trailer is one the creature comforts that I don’t want to be without. Aside from never having to wait in line for the
hydrant at a busy show grounds or worse yet having no access to water at a trail head, bringing water from your barn can help increase the chances that your horse actually drinks while away from home. It is also handy for sponging off your horse after a hot event, wiping down tack, rinsing off your horses exercise boots and general post-ride cleanup. In the event of an injury having access to clean water can help facilitate cleaning of a wound. Even if you are not ready to purchase a water tank for your horse trailer check out the camping department at your local department store for a Collapsible 5 Gallon Water Cube. I like to have at-least 5 gallons on board for each horse I am hauling out for a day trip.
Travel First Aid Kit -A well marked and well stocked first aid kit
for horse and human will be a welcome friend in the event of a minor injury on the road. Get the full details of what I keep in my kit from the Horse Trailer Maintenance and Safety Stock Up blog post.
Trailer Helper – Ok we all remember going through drivers education and learning how to change a tire. Regardless of how long
ago that may have been, the need for access to the right tools to fix a flat are imperative. The Trailer Helper is the anchor item in my Roadside Hazard Kit, this item allows me to change a trailer tire without unloading the horses. You can read more about the other items I keep in my Horse Trailer Maintenance and Safety Stock Up blog post.
Manure Basket and Mini Picker – Handy around the trailer and in the barn having a manure basket and travel picker will help keep to your trailer looking good and minimize insects and odors. Cleaning up after your horse prior to leaving when away from home will ensure that you are welcome to come back again!
Grooming Kit – having a nice selection of grooming tools and styling products just for the horse trailer will help save time and
frustrations while getting packed for your outing. For complete brush sets try the Oster ECS 7pc Kit or the Country Pride 10 Piece Grooming Set. If you like to mix and match favorite brushes start with the Shires Grooming Bag or the Noble Outfitters Essential Tote. Either of these bags have plenty of room to add in a Braiding kit, Laser Sheen, Green Spot Remover, Pyranha Fly Spray, and a bottle of Sore No More.
Hay Bale Carrier – For those times when you are traveling a longer
distance or even staying overnight it may come necessary to bring along a full bale of hay. If your trailer does not have a roof rack or you do not have an extra slot in the horse compartment the prospect of putting hay in your tack room can be a bit frustrating. No need for undue stress though. A hay bale bag will keep even an open bale well contained for travel without trashing your tack room. Check out the full bale bag, half bale bag, or bale bag with wheels.
A clean comfortable place to sit – The struggle is real. You’ve got your show clothes on, you’ve got a break between classes
and need to rest but where are you going to sit without getting your breeches or chaps dirty? Having a couple folding chairs in the trailer will be a welcome accessory for those times when you need a well deserved break. Check out the Classic Directors Chair, or the Supreme Directors Chair complete with a side table and pocket organizer for all day comfort. Both can be customized with your stable name and a logo!
Travel Saddle Rack – Great horsemen everywhere (and grooms too) know that when the ride is over the horse comes first. Having a
free-standing saddle rack available outside of the trailer can really come in handy whether your a done for the day or in-between events. Check out the compact collapsible saddle rack. Have a heavy trail or show saddle? try the more substantial Folding Saddle Rack. If you have a stall having a hook-over style saddle rack can help keep your saddles off the ground. Check out these other great portable saddle racks.
Turtle Snaps Trailer Ties – There are many choices on the market for trailer ties. I have always been a huge advocate of Turtle Snaps
brand trailer ties. In the event that your horse falls or spooks while tied, this very special snap will automatically release the horse. I put the turtle snap on the trailer side and the carabiner on the halter side. With this configuration, in the event that my horse panics and the snap releases he is left with both an intact halter and the trailer tie hanging from the halter to facilitate catching. The other nice thing about the turtle snaps is that in the event you are near your horse when he panics you simply grab the plastic sleeve and the snap releases smoothly and reliably. The snap takes a great deal of force to release so you will not have a loose horse from general head tossing or leaning.
Blanketing on the Go – I keep a fleece cooler, fly scrim, cooler style rain sheet and an elastic blanket surcingle on a blanket rack in my trailer. I find I can address most of my horses comfort needs with these bare bones basics.
Ready to roll!
As you can see there are a lot of great items that make organizing your horse trailer easy and enjoyable. I have found through the years that having the above items in the trailer and always ready to go gives me great peace of mind. I am able to better focus on gathering just what I need for myself and my horse for the specific needs of our trip. Since I no longer worry about getting everything for the trailer packed I spend more time enjoying my horse and less time rushing around trying to remember all of these extraneous items that we need but often forget. I love the fact that once we arrive to a show or trailhead I know just where everything is located and can tack up quickly and easily. Have a great ride!