Turnout was a priority for Jordon, because keeping horses on grass saves a lot of money—they don’t have to feed hay for six months out of the year due to the abundant grazing available. Mares are kept separate in 2-acre paddocks. The 20-acre pasture houses yearlings and 2-year-olds.

“Once they get to a certain age and are worth a certain amount of money, we would hate for anything to happen to them,” Jordon said. “Those horses get turned out on their own couple-acre little pastures.”

Jordon grew up in Colorado on a cattle ranch, and she was used to five-string wire fencing even barbed wire at times. But after watching valuable horses get cut up due to the fencing, the Briggses implemented fencing with a pipe top rail and no-climb wire.

“The horses can kick it, paw at it, and run into it and they can’t get their legs through it,” Jordon said. “They can’t impale themselves on a T-post, and I can’t tell you what a peace of mind it was for me to build the fence the way we did.”


The Briggses have one large outdoor roping arena—150 feet wide and 240 feet long with a return alley along the side, finished with auto guardrails funneling into the roping chute. The place has a 40-foot round pen with tall panels so horses can’t look out when they’re being worked to help them focus.

“The round pen is connected to our arena and our return alley, so when we’re halter breaking colts or working with hard-to-catch recip mares, we can run horses up from the pasture to the return alley into the round pen,” Jordon said.

An outdoor arena.
The Briggses have one large roping arena located beside the barn. The return alley can funnel animals from a turnout to the round pen, or in the case of cattle, on through the chute. Photo by Abigail Boatwright.

Work Space

At the Briggs’ place, the wash rack is right outside the barn. Tie areas are located around the place. The tack room is close to the barn aisle where horses are tied for saddling. Rubber mats surround the round pen, so horses can be tied out once they’re saddled or after a ride but the inevitable pawing won’t churn up the ground.

Busby Quarter Horses


Andrea and Jeff Busby own Busby Quarter Horses in Brock, Texas. They have been at the main place in Texas for 11 years. The ranch sits on 300 acres with around 150 horses on the property most days—recip mares, broodmares, foals, yearlings, horses in training and outside horses.

Jeff is an engineer, and he designed most of their facilities—safety being the first priority. The Busbys’ ranch manager also has an engineering degree and both men are competent welders, so they built most of the structures on the property.

The place is laid out in zones, with the pasture for recip mares located furthest from the entrance. Next is the foaling barn and turnouts for young horses. As the horses age, they’re moved closer to the training facility until they reside in the shed row beside the arena for daily riding. This is intentional—horses coming and going for training and competition are located as far away from the pregnant mares as possible to decrease chances of illness in the pregnant mares that could cause them to abort.

There are no cement surfaces exposed to horses, Andrea says. A rubber flooring material covers most cement, even the drainage ditches.

“Inevitably, something is going to happen— horses are going to get loose, and you don’t want them to slide across the concrete and fall and injure themselves,” Andrea said.

Because heavy rainfall is typical for the area, the Busbys designed the covered arena and surrounding area drainage to flow into a gutter system out to a stock tank. Trucks and trailers can be driven under the covered arena to unload out of the rain.

“Unless you go out to a casita [pen] to catch a horse, you can stay pretty dry because everything’s under one roof,” Andrea said of the main training area and shed row.

The buildings, housing for staff and pens on-site are all placed strategically around the Busby property to make sure as many horses can be seen by as many staff members as possible in a day.

“They may be going to the grocery store or to church, but they have to go by the horses to get to their house,” Andrea said. “Somebody is putting their eyes on those horses all the time.”

An equine facility with a large indoor roping arena.
The Busbys have one large covered roping arena with a return alley on one side and a calf alley and shed row of stalls on the other. Also connected to the arena are temporary paneled stalls and a grooming area for visitors. Photo by Abigail Boatwright.


There are three main stalling locations at Busby Quarter Horses, and all have different intentions, uses and priorities. This includes a shed row of 20 stalls that are 20-by-25 feet, on the side of the large roping arena, with a calf alley in between and a return on the other side, all under one roof. The stalls are made of solid wood and heavy-duty welded wire to maximize airflow. The stalls’ large size means horses can still move around throughout the day and are in close proximity to the arena.

Another barn on the property houses eight stalls. It’s mostly used for horses needing extra medical care, because the stalls are smaller in size and the barn houses a cold-water spa therapy. If horses have leg injuries, they can be treated without having to walk very far.

The third barn is the foaling barn, which has larger stalls for mares foaling and solid-sided walls for privacy of the mares. Flooring is one continuous piece so it can be easily sanitized between mares.

Also on the ranch is the veterinary clinic. Multiple Professional Rodeo Cowboys Assocation Veterinarian of the Year Marty Tanner, DVM, practices at Tanner Equine. It contains another 10-stall barn, a jogging area covered in rubberized flooring, two examination rooms, a conference room and an office. The stalls and flooring are made of material that is easily sanitized.

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