Central Texas Equestrians Are Not Okay

Central Texas Equestrians Are Not Okay

Y’all. This rain. This rain.

By May, we’ve usually had a few days in the 90s. By now, summer is in full swing and we’re all planning all the air-conditioned and water activities we can to stay cool. But not this year. Noooooo.

I’ve lived here for over ten years, and I’ve never seen this much rain at once. For weeks now we’ve had extremely heavy thunderstorms, a day or so of sun, and then buckets of rain again. It feels like Louisiana. I don’t like it.

This has, of course, made equestrians and horses miserable around the area. Most people haven’t been able to ride hardly at all. Even having a covered doesn’t always help, since I know at least one barn in the area who had flooding and storm damage to their property.

I’m luckier than many, because we have incredible footing at my place. If there are close to 24 hours without rain, they can usually get it drug and rideable. So I’ve been able to sneak in rides here or there. I got to ride Sunday/Monday of Memorial Day weekend, and I got to ride last night. I don’t think I’ve ever been so grateful for some random hacks!

Of course, this is hard on the horses—especially Poet. Y’all know I love turnout and think it’s necessary for horses. My barn also prioritizes turnout, but is very careful about both the land and the horses. If it’s super slick and muddy, they keep the horses in so nobody gets hurt. With this much back and forth rain, that means Poet has barely gotten out at all in the past two weeks.

I hate it, but I get it. Horse life here isn’t setup for this kind of weather, especially if you’re on a smaller property that doesn’t have acres and acres of turnout (which most don’t). He still gets out of his stall pretty much every day unless it’s pouring. I’ll go out and handwalk/graze, or if I can’t they will get him out to stretch his legs. But still, it’s hard on any horse… especially a young Thoroughbred.

Unfortunately, we’re due for roughly another 8-10 days of rain. I get so down when I think about it. The weather feels apocalyptic. It feels like climate change is right on my doorstep instead of that scary thing I worry about for future generations. Mostly, I feel bad for my horse. Of course I want to get riding regularly again, but him being up this much feels awful.

Please weather gods, make it stop.

13 thoughts on “Central Texas Equestrians Are Not Okay

  1. One of my professors made a very anecdotal comment that the speed and magnitude of global lockdowns has likely created some short term changes to the environment as a whole. South Florida also had one of its coldest winters. We have also been praying for rain despite the fact that is hurricane season. None of us are okay

  2. I too have been complaining about the rain, but then I remember the 2011 drought and I look at the extreme drought happening now in much of the western US. Plus our lake reservoirs aren’t even close to full. So like… maybe the reservoirs could fill up and we could divert this rain west?

  3. The weather has been absolutely wild. The droughts in Oregon have been horrific. Wisconsin is gearing up to almost two weeks of scorching, hellfire (for us) heat, Texas and the rain.

    I feel like sooner rather than later, horse keeping is going to get much more difficult with the wild swings from the norm that the areas are experiencing.

  4. My old dog is terrified of thunderstorms. I keep looking at the forecast with day after day of storms and it makes me want to hide under something, too 🙁

  5. California would happily take some of that rain. The west coast expects some of their reservoirs to dry up. Our barn already survives on trucking water in. The fires are already starting. I am sorry you guys are having that kind of rain,that amount sounds horrible and I can imagine causes all types of problems.

  6. I haven’t reset my all my newsfeeds to Texas yet (still) so I mostly get terrifying reports of West Coast drought, cities fighting over water resources, the burn bans, and just recently the Midwest crops drying up. It’s so weird to feel extremely comforted by all the rain when everyone else is freaking out about heat and dryness. And then know Texans are freaking out because this just isn’t normal.

  7. The “official” reports for total precip in DFW say 7.77″, but I think it’s closer to 14″ at my house (because don’t ALL people track the amount of rain they get each in their paper planner?). 2015 was WAY wetter for us than is 2021, but it’s definitely putting a very wet damper on riding. I’m super lucky and my ground dries out quickly and I can usually ride 24 hours after even a LOT of rain (3.56″ last Monday, rode Tuesday afternoon). However friends I have south of FW and NE of Dallas aren’t as lucky and live in swamplands right now.
    But don’t EVEN get me started on the freaking bugs after this much rain……

  8. i’ll be curious to see how TX twists the unusual weather phenomena into somehow blaming wind farms…. or maybe this time it’ll be the solar panels’ fault?!

  9. it happened in 2007… did it not happen in 2014? when i lived in san antonio i heard over and over again every 7 years it rained like this. seems right on schedule, haha. i remember standing at the gate at lackland checking IDs and the water was up to my knees on the other side of military drive at the other gate.

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