3 Ways To Get Yourself A Round Pen

A Round Pen Is Something Every Horse Owner Should Have


Building a round pen is extremely important but not necessarily expensive or demanding. The resources are easily accessible and cheap. For example, posts, rails, and footing can help you make an adequate round pen without spending a fortune. If you are on budget and want to keep minimum expenses on your round horse pen, you can take some few ideas and tips here.

We will first explore the materials necessary for a quick round pen


This is one of the main things you need before you get the project started. If you want to minimize your expenses, you can get economical options by choosing to use regular, wooden landscape posts. For example, you can opt for the same type of wood you would use for your backyard or garden project. You should be aware that these posts are not necessarily designed for longevity. They are not permanent solutions to your fencing problem. You will notice that they are not designed of highest quality wood and you are likely to find many defects in the wood. If your horses are active, they will wear them out quickly. The weather conditions in your area also play a part in destroying the condition of the posts as soon as you put them out. This should not scare you away from taking off with your small-budget round pen, though. If money is an issue (and it is; with most people) you can still achieve a desirable and functional structure. This temporary solution will work just fine in helping you meet your requirements

You should consider spending an extra cost ranging from $15 to $20 to get some good pressure treated posts for the gate. You will need them stronger because they are used more. Soon you will find out how it was important to do this as you practically see it withstand the weather conditions. Take a cue from the saying; ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’ to boost your patience and confidence. You will need it when you make that first round pen for your equine companion.


The rails make up the second most important part of the project. The recommended rails are the vinyl type with integrated metal wire. They come with in rolls of between 300 and 600 feet of wire for convenience. They are able of withstanding a significant amount of force against them to maintain a firm hold over the years. This means they are designed for longer use. The most important part is that these rails require little or no maintenance thanks to their durability. Most people have made the 2-rail vinyl fences to outline their property and overall landscaping.

For efficiency, you need to find vinyl horse fencing for a 3-rail round pen. Depending on the size pen you need to achieve, the 400 feet of vinyl recommendation is standard form most average pens. For this length of vinyl, you can make a 50-foot round pen, which is an average measurement for most general round pen for two horses. You can build the gate with pure wood. This will match your round pen fence perfectly. You will need $50 for your supplies and materials. With vinyl you are set to build a firm and durable pen for your equine companion.

Sand Footing Preparation

If you have a sand base, you have the best surface for your footing. This is the best option for a pen on a budget. You should also ensure that your drainage issues are catered by a sandy foundation. If not, you need to till the surface until you achieve loose soil about 4 inches deep for horses home. Get a tiller for about $40 per day in any DIY centers near you. This will help you prepare the best surface for your horse. If you are in a farm with other parts of it requiring some face uplifting, you may use the tiller so that you spare the hiring cost and make the most out of it. This would be taking advantage of the opportunity to boost the overall look of your garden. For example, take a look around for flower beds or other parts that need rejuvenation back to liveliness. Let your garden spring back to life with a little tilling. By combining projects, you can help cut down your budget even further and spare time and other resources.

After long-term use, your round pen footing is expected to become packed down. You will need to haul in sand occasionally to cushion the already congested layers. You may need to purchase a truckload of sand at between $100 and $200 for improving the footing. This is worthwhile investment that you should made a habit of in your round pen. The sand will provide a good working surface for your horses and keep it dry by absorbing the urine and rain quickly to keep it dry. You will not be seeing any mud on your footing if you keep hauling sand after some time. If you fail to do this, you risk getting a pond for a surface. This is unhygienic and a violation of animal rights’ too.

Remember that the construction of your round pen largely depends on your climate and natural environment. The soil naturally occurring at your ranch or homestead determines the resilience of the pen and hence; its overall performance. Without a proper base in your round pen, you risk losing cushioning and start to soil the natural ground. Your efforts towards maintaining a sandy surface cannot be over emphasized

Total Approximate costs of your pen

After highlighting the three most important needs for your round pen construction, it is time to estimate the cost. Remember, this in average potential pen house in the making. Here is what these materials will cost you.

  • Posts $70
  • Roll of vinyl (400-650 feet) $300
  • Accessories and supplies $80
  • Wood for the gate $50
  • Tiller rent @ approximately $40

This means with a total cost of only $540, you are set to begin your work. You will also be saving most of the materials because they are available in bulk. For example, you will be sparing at least 200 feet of vinyl as left over. With only $540, you will be giving your horses the safety and comfort they need and have earned from you.

Thanks to the low cost of materials, you will be able to attain a beautiful and functional round pen even when on a budget.

A round pen is an indispensable training place for a horse owner and fan. It is the safe place, which offers confinement and an area to work or ride your horse. This wooden round be completed in one weekend but serve you for many years. The standard size of a round pen should range between 50 feet in diameter. 5 feet of height are enough for the pen but can be modified according to your preferences later.

Option One:

This is the cheapest form of a round pen and can be completed within 2 days even if you are working alone or with one assistant. This means a weekend would be enough time to complete the pen without interfering with your work or tuition schedule. It costs not more than $300.

  1. The Radius

By placing the first stake in the center of the area you need to build the pen, you can measure the radius to make a perfect circle. Take between 25 and 30 feet of rope and place a second spot. This would be the radius of your round pen. Repeat the same procedure on other parts from the main stake until you have a circle with a perfect circumference. The aim is not to make the perfect circle but this sure boosts your confidence in your work. It will also be easy to utilize and save materials going into the project.

  1. Posts and Rail

Depending on the number of stakes you have, the positions of the original markings defining the radius will make the spots for the posts. Nail the 10-foot long boards to the posts to form the rails. Two rails will be enough to keep your horses inside. Make one a foot from the ground and another a foot from the top to form an even line.

  1. The holes

Use your post hole digger to dig foot long holes for each post. After burying the posts for stability, fill the holes and tamp down the down with your shovel just like you do when you plant a tree. The foot long hole will offer enough stability for your posts and ensure the entire pen is sturdy and stable. Remember it will be jostled by riders and horses regularly so it needs to be firm for a long time.

  1. The rails

With this option, you will be utilizing boards in place of rails. Nail the boards on the inside of the poles so that you have them inside the pen. This will help in reducing the shock when riders and horses come crushing into the boards. They are more resilient from the inside that the outside. Use your level and mark the posts to ensure you have an even line of the boards around your pen for a perfect-looking round pen. Make single nails on the boards as you proceed to make the rest before finalizing on this progress. You are free to choose the height of the pen but most people prefer to leave a portion of the post extending an inch or two above the rail.

Most people make three lines of rails depending on the surface area too. Remember to leave enough room from the bottom for safety. A rider who has been thrown off can slide and roll away to avoid any injury from a stomping horse. You will also keep the lower bar durable by keeping it from the ground with wetness, pests, and crawling microorganisms.

  1. Gate

Building your own wooden gate requires being handy. The wood is supposed to be seasoned and pressure treated for the best quality. Spare 4 feet for the gate into a 50-foot ring. Keep your safe horse by making a simple streamlined gate. Use straight edges that meet up evenly to reduce the risk of catching a halter. The latch can be rodeo or chain to complete.

Option 2

This is the average round pen, which costs approximately $540. The difference is; it requires extra vitality and sturdiness by improved DIY tools and equipment. This option is great if you want to maintain a low profile and still make a good and reliable round pen.

After making the posts firm to the ground, it is time for the vinyl rails.

The Vinyl Rails

Vinyl is sold in 600 feet sheets. Since your plan to use only 400 feet, this means you have a third of the length to spare for other fencing.

Option 3

The third option requires mostly prefabricated items and material. This means you will be using high-quality material and possible services of professional builders. Most of the material will be made of metal for optimum durability.


For prefabricated metal gates, you should be keen on the design. For example, you should avoid gates with rounded corners because they can become safety hazards when your horse gets stuck between a post and the rounded corner.


In conclusion, a round pen is an indispensable training place for a horse owner and fan. It is the safe place, which offers confinement and an area to work or ride your horse. This wooden round be completed in one weekend but serve you for many years. The standard size of a round pen should range between 50 feet in diameter. 5 feet of height are enough for the pen but can be modified according to your preferences later.


I have owned over 50 horses and currently own a small horse farm with 8 horses. I have competed on and off for over 25 years while doing mostly trail riding and cow sorting these days. I write these articles to help anyone out there if you love this article pin it to your Pinterest or Share on other social media platform. Thanks for visiting.

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