Horse Camping Hacks and Tips

Yes, this! I did this with an air mattress in TN in July, and I actually FROZE overnight. I think you need something insulating in between layers, or maybe a real mattress to make it better. For me, anyway. I hate being cold at night.

A foam topper over an air mattress will do the trick

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I will second the "space blanket for under the mattress. I horse-camped in my GN a LOT! Miss it. You will have a ball. I also had reflective material to cover my windows and upper vent. They were custom made and velcro’d on. Not that it wouldn’t be hard to make, but I don’t sew. They helped keep heat in/out, if needed, and was security when stored that no one could see in my trailer. I never had a problem with condensation. I had a screen door too – well worth that one!

A magnetic flashlight to keep permanently by your beside. I used a twin mattress, so I had a hard area to climb on. Used a Sterite container as my nightstand (plus it held a knit cap for head warmth if it was really cold out. I used my sleeping bag initially, but found a queen down duvet to be just as warm and more comfortable. Kept sleeping bag in trailer for just in case. I used a Husky rolling tool box to be my “step” up into the GN section, and it was my chair if I sat inside. I put a lightweight metal shelving rack in the dressing room and spaced the shelves so one was above the window and one below. The one below I lined with a mat so it became a flat surface for other things. The remaining shelves were for camp stove, fire starters, utensils, knives, strobes (I used little stobe/reflectors to help me park in the dead of the night – so I would have something to aim my wheels at!) I used a portable saddle rack, vs mounted ones, so that when camping, I moved the rack to the trailer feed door and had a “tack room” in my trailer, and it gave me space in my dressing room.

A thermometer inside – and you will find in the morning it is colder IN your trailer than outside. Tons of Command Hooks near the door, both high and low. I kept my keys on a low hook so I could reach without having to climb inside, plus hanging your clothes up is easier than folding them.

For food, we would make everything ahead of time and freeze them, as the week progressed and our food thawed, that was our meal for the night! Salads initially and finally thawed spaghetti, lol. Horse feed was in separate baggies so we didn’t have to do supplements there.

For horse, DUCT TAPE. One time, the corrals didn’t have caps on the metal uprights and a horse slit it’s neck scratching on the raw metal. (horse was okay, but ride was over) Ever since I inspected the corral and duct-taped any sharp edges. A hose, if you are close enough to a faucet to refill your horse buckets. Horses eat a lot of hay camping, so a wheeled bale bag was handy to drag from truck to corral and leave close by. Deep Woods Off wipes for out on trail. Dawn dish soap to encircle camp if you have ants coming in.

Take a shower before it gets dark and sit around campfire in sweats or something. A shower after dark is cold…

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Puddin pie, thank you for recommending the Horse Trailer Conversion site! I got tons of great ideas from it already.

Looks like you have had plenty of living space suggestions…

I saw someone above suggest a High Tie - these are awesome, but sadly I never had one. We would set up over head tether lines if at all possible. If only one tree/tie post was available, we would connect to the one tie available, then go over the trailer to the opposite side and tie to the tie ring on the other side of the trailer. Depending on where we were, sliding vs stationary tether rules applied. If overhead tethering was not allowed or couldn’t be done, sometimes I would connect the two tie rings on the side of the trailer and do a ‘sliding tether’ between the two just to give my guy a little more movement. We were never allowed to use pens, so I have no experience with that.

We saw lots of people use foam to fill in the gaps between the tires and the wheel well. Same with the handles on doors(emergency/back of trailer…we used sponges). That keeps leads/halters from getting stuck, and legs for the wheel wells.

Make sure your halter is not just buckled, but also ‘locked’…meaning the leftover is fed back through the buckle. I also got points taken off one time for using a carabiner as a clip on a lead because the smaller ones don’t have the necessary weight capacity to withstand a horse. Lesson learned. Not that you are looking at losing points, but the cheap carabiners that are easy to use for buckets and stuff break really easy under horse pressure…don’t tie with them. haha.

Permanently adding water bucket holders/attachments to the side of your trailer is so so so helpful. Do it if you haven’t already done so. You will not regret.

Take molasses or something to put in water to encourage your horse to drink in case you have to offer water not from home.

Have you ever seen those small plastic stackable stools? Really handy to have along and store when not in use. We use them to keep anything we want off the ground - coolers etc… or set one up as a little night table for your book, headlamp, glasses, water bottle, that sort of thing.

I just found out that there’s an industrial-strength Velcro that, they say, will stick anything to anything. I want to try it for sticking curtains on the windows of my truck canopy.