Hunt Country Stable Tour Part 1

This past weekend, the 57th Annual Hunt Country Stable Tour was held by Trinity Episcopal Church. It’s a self guided tour all around Middleburg and Upperville in Virginia of some pretty amazing barns. So if you’re looking to be jealous of fancy, scenic barns, this is exactly what you need. So here they are, in the order in which we viewed them – Prepare yourself for the jelly you will be emitting.

Salem Oaks Farm

salemoaksbarn

We started with Salem Oaks, a breathtaking property just a few miles from me, although my farm is literally on the other side of the railroad tracks. I told Dave this is what we should live in. Gorgeous barn, with enormous apartment (or full house!) on top. It was incredible. Also, Dave didn’t seem opposed to the idea, so I think I know what our next house will be!

This farm is unique to the area because they practice both English and Western here. The daughter competes in hunters, and the parents raise Quarter horses.

barn steps
Lovely stone stairs that lead from someone’s house (not sure who’s, not but it’s the owners) down to the barn.
Gorgeous interior, I loved the exposed beams. Also, horse looks semi grouchy, but actually was quite friendly.
Gorgeous interior, I loved the exposed beams. I can honestly say I never expected to say that about a barn. Also, horse looks semi grouchy, but actually was quite friendly. She can’t help the resting bitch face.
Idea to steal: This organizational board, with all the horses in magnet form to show turnout. Easy to change and reference.
Idea to steal: This organizational board, with all the horses in magnet form to show turnout. Easy to change and reference.
I always super jelly of huge arenas with nice footing.
I’m always super jelly of huge arenas with nice footing.
The upper broodmare barn. Not clear if there is a lower broodmare barn.
The upper broodmare barn. Not clear if there is a lower broodmare barn, if so, we missed it.
He was sticking his head out a minute before, but I'm not sure if my friend wants to be identifiable on the internet.
He was sticking his head out a minute before, but I’m not sure if my friend wants to be identifiable on the internet, so just just admire her beautiful hair, or pretend she’s Cousin It.

Country Fair

countryfair

Next on our route was the Country Fair, held at the Trinity Episcopal Church itself. First off, this church is gorgeous. I love looking at unique buildings, the older, the better. This one had a main building and several smaller buildings. It also had a courtyard, and I love courtyards. One day, I will have my own courtyard.

courtyard
One day, you will be mine. Or at least a copy of you, I’m not planning to invade the church.
Country Fair Vendors
Country Fair Vendors

One of the vendors was Old Buttermould Pattern Products, from Pennsylvania. Using old molds, they create these sand pictures. I will admit to only half paying attention when she explained it, but Dave really liked them, and we got a hen.

sandchicken

The description included says:

“Hen” A Sandcast old butter mold pattern collectible! This is a really nice pattern. Patterns like this are not as common for the collector to find. Therefore, we are happy to have this little pattern to pass on. This came from a big collection of butter molds and butter prints from Michigan. All the coloring in our work is dyed sand! We never use paint! This pattern took one month to complete! We hope you will appreciate our part in preserving a small portion of history.

There were a bunch more vendors, including hats, bronze statues (way out of our budget!), wood making, and a consignment tack store. Also, neat signs.

I was thinking about getting this sign, but my chickens are angels.
I was thinking about getting this sign, but my chickens are angels.

Trappe Hill Farm

trappehillfarm

Trappe Hill Farm offers horse swimming, right off the dock in the picture. I would like to do horse swimming, preferably while on the horse, so I think I would be a great fit here, hopefully they will invite me back.

Very friendly mom and baby.
Very friendly mom and baby.

They also breed and raise thoroughbreds for racing and sale, and have a few retired horses.

Apparently they breed for whisker quality. This foal had an extremely impressive amount of whiskers.
Apparently they breed for whisker quality. This foal had an extremely impressive amount of whiskers.

The barn was so amazing cool on a hot day, I was very impressed. It’s exactly the kind of barn we all need to have. Also, they had a courtyard with a stone mounting block.

The best possible thing you can have in a courtyard.
The best possible thing you can have in a courtyard.

I met the manager’s endurance horses, who were all gorgeous, and looked amazing for their ages (approximately low 20’s). They all traveled everywhere to compete in Endurance, and one of them actually went to the Pan American Games!

This is the one, and this impressive creature has been all over the world to compete.
This is the one, and this impressive creature has been all over the world to compete.
The owner let me introduce myself.
The owner let me get close to this one. The horse is a bit wary of the weirdo in her stall.

Unfortunately, at that point we ran out of time to get to the other farms. They would have to wait until the following day.

Other than just seeing these beautiful farms, I’m really impressed with how welcoming the owners are. They are certainly under no obligation to allow strangers to tour their properties, but they opened their doors, and they are present to talk to the people who stop by, even offering (like above) for me to go into the stall and say hello.

Part two coming up!

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10 comments

  1. :O WHAT A COOL TOUR! Also that butter mould thing is quite interesting, though I’m unclear on the spelling of mold/mould/fungus? I do find it quite entertaining that people used to imprint their butter…

    1. Yeah I don’t get it either. But back then, it was probably their entertainment for the day.

      Although growing mold in a specific formation and color would be super impressive. Why has no one done that?! Someone needs to break the taboo of mold being bad. Blue cheese is having trouble doing it alone.

  2. Is it ridiculous that I got so distracted by that grouchy faced animal, and thinking that I didn’t need to tour some fancy pants barn to see a grouchy face when I could just look at my own mare? Lolz

    1. hahaha! Isabel needs to be on the tour all by herself. Exhibit A: Grouchy Mare. Can be found in a variety of barns around the country.

    1. Me too!! I just need the barn, I wouldn’t need a house if I lived there! Although I do need the arena too, so the barn and like a few acres around it.

  3. Wow, I want the first barn badly. And the baby horse. 😀 Also, I have butter molds. haha, but no sand art from butter molds. You have one upped me. 😉

    1. You have them too!? I had no idea they were a thing! I’ll bring you a sack of sand, and we can experiment.

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