Swallowland Farm and World Class Facilities

The Land and History

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Swallowland Farm is 105 scenic acres of some of Kentucky’s best farmland surrounding historic Helmwood Hall.  Helmwood Hall was built in 1835 in the Greek Revival style and is on the National Register of Historic Places.  The farm includes woodlands, ponds, springs, streams and open fertile fields.

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The beautiful rolling hills of Kentucky have always been know as some of the best horse grazing lands in the country. At Léttleiki Icelandics we pride ourselves in our lush pastures. We feel letting the horses be able to run and graze is one of the keys to maintaining happy and healthy equines. Therefore we have designed a series of pasture for both our horses on pasture board and for our horses in training and on regular board. For horses in the barn we have set up a run that we can herd the horses down and then section them off into one of our nine different front pastures. This enables us to turn out horses in many groups and also allows us to practice rotational grazing. Behind the barn are larger pastures for turnout of bigger groups.   Around the barn we also have a series of dry lots for turn out for horses on a diet or during bad weather. One of this dry lots also has a large run in shed for horses kept outside overnight.

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To accommodate horses that are on pasture board or on break from training we have a variety of paddocks and pastures with run-ins that allow us to rotate the horses regularly and control the horses diet with the use of dry lots.  Incorporated into these facilities is a separate paddock and run in barn for pregnant mares during the last 60-90 days of pregnancy to prevent fescue toxicosis.  In addition we have pastures and run-ins specifically designed for stallions on pasture board.

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The beautiful farm also has a variety of trails for training including open areas, trails through the woods, and gravel roads. This gives us the opportunity to train the horses in a variety of environments and gorgeous places to take clientele trail riding.

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The barn

Our newly built state of the art barn is modern and practical as well as elegant. The barn has 26 stalls and can house approximately 40 horses. The majority of the stalls are 12ft x 12ft and can comfortably house two horses.   When properly matched this gives the horses a companion and socialization even when in a stall. The other stalls house one horse each are on 8ft x 12ft. We have stalls designed specifically for stallions as well as for mare and geldings. All the stalls allow for the horses to hang their heads out into the isle and the majority of the stalls also have windows looking out. Our primary stalls are made with a metal mesh so even when lying down the horses can see out and around themselves. The barn has a high ceiling, large doors and skylights. This coupled with our stall design and multiple windows mean that our barn is very light and open. This is important especially during KY´s hot summers.   In addition the entire barn is made of cement block walls, which also help the environment stay cool and refreshing.

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The majority of the stalls have automatic waterers and all the stalls have a salt block holder so that the horses have constant access to water and salt. The horses are usually feed three times daily hay unless one or all of those feedings is replaced by turn out on grass. Grain is feed twice daily if necessary. Stalls are cleaned in the morning and fresh bedding is always put down. The barn has a hay room, bedding storage room, grain room, and utility bathroom enabling us to care for all the horses needs with ease.

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For the two-legged people in the barn there is a lounge, which includes a teaching area, comfy sofa area, office, small kitchen and eating area and two handicapped accessible bathrooms. This area allows us to easily host clinics, lectures, and meetings in an environment that is comfortable and has everything we need. Outside the lounge on both sides is a patio with more places to sit, relax, and socialize.

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In the center of the barn is the tacking up area, shoeing stall, storage room, and wash stall. The barn was designed for ease when working with and training horses, which is why these places are the center of the barn. The tacking up area has ample room and places to tie and tack up the horses. A large tack box with a garage door allows us easy and quick access to all our main tack. The shoeing stall is organized and well lit. It has a safe area for the horses to be tied and shod as well as a workbench and places to hang and store all necessary equipment. The utility room houses the main sound system, washer and dryer, and storage space for horse care equipment. The wash stall has a gently sloping floor covered in rubber mats to allow for efficient drainage but a safe place to hose down or bath horses after training. A boom for the hose and having hot and cold water easily available helps make bathing easy.

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The arena

Our arena is 20 meters x 60 meters (approx. 66ft x 197ft). There is a viewing area with bleachers and an announcer’s stand and to the right and left of the viewing area is ample room for storage. The arena is well light with energy efficient lights as well as natural lighting from skylights. The arena has five garage door entrances and two garage door windows that can all be opened to increase ventilation. In addition are two fans from the Big Ass Fan Company. The arena footing is called masters blend and is a blend of GGT and Athletex (ground up tennis shoes). The arena is an incredible asset to our business. It provides a wonderful training environment and also allows us to train rain or shine. The arena is also a perfect facility for lessons and clinics. Amenities such as our wireless mike sound system makes the Léttleiki arena a perfect set up for teaching and learning.

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Oval and straight tracks

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Swallowland Farm also has a regulation 250meter oval track and a 300 meter (1,000ft) straight track. Our oval track has a very unique design, which includes small ovals at both ends of the track that connect to a small riding arena in the center. This means that our oval track also doubles as an out door arena. Having the small ovals and center arena connected to the large oval offers extensive training options. This means we can tailor our oval track training to each individual horses needs. Since our oval track complies with international standards we are able to host both national ranking and internationally ranking competitions. Our 300-meter straight track is perfect for training horses for breeding evaluations and for practicing the Icelandic horses fifth gait the flying pace. On one side of the straight track is a judge’s pavilion. Our straight track allows us to host international breeding evaluations and a place for 100m, 150m, and 250m pace races.

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Herding circle

Around our main big pasture is a fenced in track approximately 30ft wide. This large herding circle is about 1/3 of a mile long and goes up a down a gently sloping hill.   This is a great occasional exercising tool for our horses in training. They are turned out in large groups and then we follow them in the UTV. They are encouraged to both gallop and trot. This is a wonderful way to build stamina without the pressure of the rider and the gently sloping hill also helps with strength building.   The horses love it.

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