Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Trailer Ride Video, Part 1 - Straight Load Stall

Recently, I saw a video some one took in a trailer while they sat on the floor in front of their horse.  It got me thinking about how my trailer rides.  I have always been curious but no one drives my truck and trailer but me so there's not really a way for me to take a little ride back there.  The Other Half had this ingenious idea to just buy a suction cup mount for my GoPro and mount it back there.  So, I did.


First, a refresher on what I haul with.  My truck is a Dodge 2500 Cummins diesel 6 speed manual, which is why you will hear the shifting in the videos.  It's got some mods so, that is also why it's so loud.  It's chipped with a full 5" turbo back exhaust and upgraded fuel system, among other things.  My trailer is an Sundowner mini 2+1 gooseneck trailer.


When there is a horse in it, the side ramp door is open and so are the back tail curtains (max airflow for the horses).

My GoPro has WiFi in it and connects to an app on my phone.  This allows me to be able to see exactly how I have the camera aimed and make sure it is where I want it.  

Aiming the camera with the app.

Once I had the camera how I wanted it, I hit record and off we went.  The following are clips from the video with descriptions of what is going on (turn, acceleration, deceleration, etc...)





Not a bad ride, save for some rough NJ roads.  I have received a few questions and comments about the fact that I don't tie my horses.  That's right, I don't.  Ever.  Not even Mochi who could almost fit under the chest bar if she really wanted to.  Why?  Because I don't ever want them to get hung up and choked out by being tied.  Yes, I know, trailer ties should have quick releases, and they do.  But what if that fails?  I want my horses to have the ability to right themselves should they need to.  I don't need a rope ending up around their head, neck, or if it got really crazy, a leg.  Also, I don't have cameras in my trailer to monitor them the entire ride so how would I know if they had the rope around their neck for the whole ride and sustained an injury, only for me to find it when we stop somewhere?  Also, on long hauls, shipping fever.  No thank you.

If you watched Lainey's live stream the other night, she talked about traveling and mentioned an incident where one of her horses got upside down in her trailer and she never felt it, despite hauling horses for years at some point (so this is someone that hauled A LOT and is a pro).  She did not have cameras in the trailer (that was the incident that made her invest in them) and said she was none the wiser that horse got like that until they stopped and by that time serious injury had taken place.  So, unless you have cameras on them non-stop you don't really know what's going on back there.  Anything could happen and I'd rather have their heads free.  Same in box stalls.  What's the point of a box stall if they're not loose?  

My horses are also all very good travelers.  No one acts like they have no sense, they all have great trailering manners.  No one kicks, stomps, paws, etc...  Lainey actually said if you DO have a horse that acts like that, brake check them and give them a reason to put their feet on the ground and stop that non-sense, don't coddle that behavior (more on her live stream later, I took notes for a post in the very near future).  I used to haul Klein loose in a box stall over a mountain pass on a regular basis in New Mexico and never thought twice until the day someone saw me load her to go home after xc schooling and said "You just leave her loose?"  Yep.  I have never had a problem.  That actually allows her to ride backward which is what she prefers, given the choice.

The center divider on my trailer can be removed to make a box stall, so that is my next little series of trailer videos.  I will most likely do that this weekend.  Stay tuned for those videos!

16 comments:

  1. The videos were very informative, thanks for sharing! I might have to borrow the suction cup mount idea too

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  2. This is so interesting! I saw a video recently of a horse riding in a trailer, which illustrated the differences between straight-load and slant. That particular video advocated for slant loads -- it showed the horse loose, in a box stall and the horse (when given freedom of choice) rode slightly slanted.

    I wonder if you did that with Klein, if she would be the same way? Not trying to knock your choice of a straight-load or anything like that (I don't haul myself, so really have no experience in the matter), I just find it really interesting!

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  4. She rides backward at an angle in a box stall. Also, the problem is, drafts don't tend to fit really comfortable in slants. Definitely not in a trailer that is only 7' tall and definitely not in one that isn't an extra wide. Even with the extra wide (the one where the wheel wells are on the inside) trailers that ARE 7'6", they are still cramped on a slant load. Life with full size drafts has its own set of issues for sure! The only reason she is not in a box stall all the time now is because the straight load config allows the tail curtains to be open, so more airflow. But in the colder and even just cooler months I have thought about leaving it set up as a box stall for her. Even when it warms up I still have a ton of airflow going for me because I can latch the side ramp top window open like it is in the videos.

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    1. D'Oh! I didn't even THINK about her size being an issue for slant loads, but it makes complete sense. Sometimes I'm not the brightest bulb in the box, heh.

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    2. No worries, it really isn't something you think about until you have them! I do know a lot of people haul full drafts in 7' high stock trailers, but they really have no head room and that wasn't something I could deal with. Wes fits very comfy in my current trailer too and he is bigger than Klein. He is a hand taller than her and about 300lbs more than her.

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  5. This is really cool! Also you have my dream trailer :)

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    1. I love that trailer, it really is versatile and has excellent air flow. I highly recommend it to everyone!

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  6. Interesting! My horse is a terrible hauler. It's a running joke that he has an inner ear problem! He's much better in a narrower straight load than in a slant or a trailer with lots of room. I think it's kinda individual on how they prefer to travel.

    After our accident, I am very leery of tying. I had a velcro release on Pig, but it still didn't break free completely. Thankfully he ended up being alright. I often will just tie the lead rope loosely around his neck/chest and leave it attached the the halter in the trailer instead.

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    1. I think you are right, there is definitely some individual preference as far as what they are happiest with.

      How scary!! I am sorry that happened to you guys! I am happy to hear he was ok!

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  7. Your truck is a beast! Love it! :-) Klein looks pretty stable and comfortable back there. Smart to set up the go pro to confirm that though! Having eyes on the horses in the back is nice. My friend had her trailer guy install a camera inside the trailer and it is connected to the the screen on the dash (normally used for sat nav and bumper back up camera). She can switch between the sat nav and the horses while driving and when the trailer isn't hooked up, she can use the back up camera on the bumper. Didn't cost a fortune either.

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    1. I recently looked into cameras where I could see them the entire ride. I am still going to shop around some more and compare. It would definitely be a really nice thing to have!

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  8. Update on the next set of video clips of Klein riding in a box stall: I was going to do them this weekend but I had to drop The Beast off for a new clutch last week. I am hoping to have it back by next weekend and I will do them then! The clutch recently started slipping in The Beast, so I'd rather just fix it now than wait for it to completely fail somewhere when I have a trailer full of horses!

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