I know it's not yet - but it is almost Spring! I'd like to know how you clean up around the barn, paddocks, etc. after a long winter with tons of snow! I look outside and I think "yuck", but it's still too early to start - I KNOW we're going to get more snow. But I was just wondering how everyone else copes.

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Start by checking the fences in the outlying paddocks - repair anything that was damaged by snow load or water. Clean all culverts of debris so that they run free and clean. If firm enough footing but soft enough to have an effect - start harrowing paddocks.

If you are going to frost seed a paddock now is the time to do it.

Scrub and sanitize (bleach) water troughs in outlying paddocks.

Decide if any stalls need repair - new footing, mats replaced, walls scrubbed and repainted, etc and start gathering supplies now so that it is in little monetary chunks rather than all at once.

Get the lawn mower, weed eater, chainsaws, etc serviced. Examine jumps or dressage panels for repair and do them now (if you didn't do them in the fall).

Take advantage of warm sunny days after a few days of warmth to start painting the perimeter fences.

Re-harrow paddocks (even the ones with horses in them - I harrow each about 3-4 times each month for the first few months in every season).

Book the farrier to come out and put shoes on those that will be working and needing shoes. Pre-plan with your vet for herd-health vaccination day - they really appreciate this.

Start sweeping the barn loft to clean it up and make room for 2009 hay/straw. Arrange to have your manure spread (if you spread it on your fields) - this can be done on a nice firm, crisp day without ruining pasture fields.

Your tack should have been put away in the fall cleaned and oiled but if you have been using some all winter - take the time to clean, oil and have it repaired.

Plenty to do - so little time as soon spring (and summer) will be upon us.

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