I need COTH wisdom. Get ready for a novel.
We live on a 30ac hobby farm, surrounded by similar size farmettes, some 3ac residential subdivisions, and some open farmland (corn/soy).
I have an older neighbor who has been here forever that rides through and sometimes around (circling the perimeter of property) our farm on his weekly trail ride. I don’t like it because I treasure privacy and have three young inexperienced horses that I’m getting started under saddle. When neighbor rides through everyone gets wound up and it’s really inconvenient if I happen to be trying to ride. I have reluctantly never broached the subject with older neighbor because I have a feeling he’s going to age out of trail rides very soon (in his 80s, recently had a fall) and I would feel terrible if he got hurt riding on the road (which is the alternative). Plus I like him. Neighbor #1 has 20 ac, but rents most out for corn farming, doesn’t leave anywhere for him to ride on his property.
New neighbors moved into previously horse-vacant horsey property between our place and Neighbor #1. The 15ac property has outdoor arena, indoor arena, and 5ac of field for riding. New neighbors haven’t introduced themselves. But they have taken to riding through our hayfield, stopping and letting their horses graze.
I’m trying not to be simply ‘territorial’, but I’m really annoyed at the audacity of these folks and I was looking forward to having no more uninvited riders as Neighbor #1 aged out. The new folks ride through our place and continue down the road, presumably riding in the ditch or skirting someone else’s fields. There are no public riding fields/trails in the area. The roads are admittedly dangerous in the sense that the residential folks treat it as a twisty Formula One course.
Please help me either come to grips with being neighborly and letting folks ride through the farm for all eternity or coach me on the right way to have the conversation (about not riding through the farm) without making enemies.