A Vermont family farm on the hills above the Connecticut River Valley


     After giving lessons at the farm for several years, we began leasing horses and ponies in 1984   While we winter quite a few, spring is an exciting time as we begin to acquire additional horses  to fill the special needs of the various camps. 

     The horses  spend the summer at area camps enjoying  7 - 8 weeks with children. Working hard with each camp, we match up horses especially suited to their program.  Some spend a longer lease at area stables. Indeed many horses end up on the "want back pleeze" list.  These live out on the mountain like brumbies playing, and gorging on pasture or round bales until the next summer. 

     We hope that campers have fun, learn to share our love of horses and gain respect for these amazing animals. Then pass this  respect and admiration  forward.   

At this time we do not lease to individuals: Only leasing  to bonafide instruction programs.

Our Philosophy:  

                                            "A horse is a lifetime friend and partner"  

     My belief that horses are magical and enriched our lives, has resulted in  sharing them with both children and adults in lessons at home and at camps for most of my life. Today with all the emphasis on gadgets and i pads, it is more important than ever to pass on the "equestrian flag" in a framework of safety, fun, education . Rustic Man Farm no longer leases  a huge number of horses. At one time we had over 150 horses going to 12 camps. But over the years, I have learned that offering a smaller lease program allows for better service and healthier horses. I never agreed with the policy of shipping camp horses off to horse slaughter buyers in the fall. And to this day I sell some to private homes, keep many of the campers over the winter and when their time comes bury them here on the hill. 


What you can expect:    

     We have both English lesson horses, quiet western trail horses and many that are now proficient at trail obstacles. Our horses are regularly seen by our vets for teeth check, vaccinations and annual coggins test. They are wormed at least 4 times a year. Horses arrive with veterinarian certificate of inspection if going our of Vermont. Tack and shoeing are options that can be selected. Delivery and pick up is included. We suggest that you come and select horses early to give us time to groom them well and have vet work done before delivery. We prefer to schedule delivery 1 -2 weeks before your program starts to be sure they are all acclimated and working well together.  Horses are horses and sometimes things go wrong so we will do swaps, if necessary. Generally problems arise early so swaps are all done by July 4th for a 7 week summer camp.

 We keep our rates competitive. Stables or camps can always buy a horse at the end of the lease. The price is disclosed up front. 

WE DO NOT lease  our horses to individuals at this time: only to bonafide lesson programs at stables and camps. Also we do not offer trail riding at the farm.

Want Backs and Winter Leases: 

     Each camp has the option at the end of the summer lease to give me a list of horses that they really really really liked and want back. I do my best to winter as many as i can. In addition to the camp list, I also have to consider the space limitations, cost, age of horse and ease of care for it. Some nice horses get on the naughty list simply because they play too rough when out of work, will not stay in the paddock when i go in with round bales or are fence breakers. 

     Some horses can go out on a lower rate winter lease. Call for details:


Reserve your Camp Horses and Ponies Early:
 we now limit numbers of camps to serve your better:

     We start planning for the summer as early as January.  Getting it right takes time.  Most camps have given a letter of intent and a signed contract by Ground Hog's Day.  that seemed like a fitting day to look forward to spring and summer. 

     It takes time to find all the additional horses needed as well as have them wormed, shed out, groomed and see the vet. Living in the mountains has challenging spring weather as well especially without a covered riding area.