Hillside Meadows in Grafton would also fit the bill!
Arrowhead is a beautiful facility in a really nice area but it is as full service as they come, including the associated costs. Not everyone goes to FL in the winter (or at least they didn’t in the past), but you had to sign up for a specific time in advance to ride every.single.time to make sure both the grooms and the rings were never too busy, and that didn’t work for my schedule even a little bit.
That would drive me crazy. During Covid the gym made you sign up for specific times to swim and I know my schedule isn’t predictable enough to support that. I do like the turnout there. I drive by it a couple of times/week.
Stoneymeade isn’t Stoneymeade anymore and that is where Ronnie Anderson is operating out of these days.
I would suggest MetroWest Riding Academy operating out of Proctor Hill which is the “sister” program to HL Select in Boxborough. MWRA is more low-key, but then you could hop over to HL Select if you wanted to do some showing or other off property adventures.
As others have said, commuting in/out of Boston is awful but going West is the best bet for travel time but not for $$ in board. I live in Waltham and can get to the Acton/Concord/Boxborough area in 35 mins with no traffic. On weeknights it’s 45-50 minutes but a breeze coming back home around 8:30pm. Feel free to PM me with any questions - happy to talk more offline. Grew up in Littleton and have been doing the commute in/out of the Metro area to ride H/J since 2010.
Bostons public transit and commuter rail is very comprehensive and efficient. If I were in Boston and looking to go direct to the barn after work, I’d consider someplace where I could do part of the commute by train. Obviously, if you are living in the city it doesn’t work, but finding a barn and a home within decent range of mass transit in the suburbs can make the insane Boston traffic more bearable. Do the worst part of the commute on the train with your kindle or iPad and then hop from train to car to barn.
This is nice in theory but there are very very few (I think only 1 barn in Acton) that is truly public transit accessible. Accessing ride sharing outside of Boston results in long wait times at best, and isn’t a reliable option in my experience. Maybe you could work it out that a fellow barn mate can pick you up from the train, but that also requires a level of coordination and planning that makes going to the barn a multistep process. Just food for thought.
Absolutely true. Commuter rail runs infrequently in off-hours, too. I think there may have been a poster last year who was coming from Europe to Boston, and insisting that she would do her horse life without a car. I don’t know what happened, but IIRC she decided not to bring her horse here as she would not be in the area for more than 2 years.
I saw this today, too.
Yes, unfortunately the subway part (usually called the T) is not in good shape. I have been making the commute, 99%+ of the time on commuter rail + subway, for 22 years, and have watched the decline. Luckily I have never been on the T when it got stuck in a tunnel, or on one memorable occasion when an Orange Line train caught on fire while going over a bridge, and when the passengers evacuated, one jumped (on purpose) off the bridge and into the Mystic River and swam to shore. The commuter rail is much better, probably because the commuter rail passengers have more $$$.
There’s a lot of politics, some of it pretty dirty, behind the T’s decline.
Agree of course with everyone re: the horrors of commuting in Boston, but it sounds like you wont have that problem working remotely (lucky you)!
Only additional thing I’d keep in mind is that turnout around here can be pretty limited. Not sure what you’re coming from, but if really good grass turnout is important to you that will be a limiting factor! I do think an eventing barn could be a nice fit- they tend to be much more low-key and welcoming of minimal/no showing and DIY adult ammies. And as someone mentioned, a couple of them run weeknight jumper nights that are quite fun.
Some of the schooling horse trials around will also let you do just the phases that you feel like doing too so you could pop over for SJ only. Orchard Hill is very flexible for example. Or you could come to the dark side and pick up eventing!
I think that was someone in NYC, but same principles apply… there’s no reasonable, regular way to get to horses from public transportation in Boston.
You need to live where you ride, then walk, bike or drive to the train station and take the train to Boston.
Oh, you’re right! I think there was a similar post from a Boston area person at least 10 years ago.
I’ve known one horse owner who managed a car-free horse life using the commuter rail, and a barn worker at a barn in Ipswich who used the commuter rail plus a 2 mile walk when he didn’t have alternatives.
That requires an amount of dedication I just wouldn’t have for… anything.
Lest we think it’s just Boston, I was on a redline metro in DC headed to work one morning when the same thing happened, fortunately just as we were pulling into a station so everyone could exit and get back above ground quickly. Was terrifying and the end of public transportation commuting for me.
If it were a horse owner doing a two mile walk, they could look at it as warming up their muscles before they were going to ride.
A barn worker probably already gets plenty of exercise before they have to walk two miles each way to and from work.
The two mile walk was an issue for the horse owner. She was not well and sort of hobbled along. I think she had stopped riding, but was visiting her horse a couple of times a week. Her situation was just very sad. (And please remember this is New England; 2 miles walks can be pretty awful due to weather of various kinds.) She was not young and fit like the barn worker. With him, people would at least sometimes give him a ride to the train from the barn if he was running late. And I know people would pick him up if they saw him walking to the barn – though he often turned them down for this. He eventually got his own car.