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Peggy McAdam-Cambridge enjoys the new jump. Photo: Jasmine Wallace
Peggy McAdam-Cambridge enjoys the new jump. Photo: Jasmine Wallace

Heard Up North: building a horse jump

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Peggy McAdam-Cambridge owns a horse farm a few miles outside Canton.
Honey Dew Acres will host whats known as an eventing competition this weekend for local equestrians. One of those events is cross-country jumping. A series of natural-looking obstacles in a field tests the horse's, and rider's, endurance and bravery.

Peggy likes a rustic look for her course. Our intern, Jasmine Wallace, found her in a converted cow barn building a new jump. With a mare and foal watching from one side, and a pile of tools on the other, Peggy made quick work of it.

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Jasmine Wallace
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Peggy McAdam-Cambridge is the owner of, and chief cross-country jump builder at, Honey Dew Acres. She built a cross-country jump out of leftover materials found on her farm that will be used in a competition hosted by the farm this Sunday, June17.

“The jump is a for a two-foot course, it is kind of a raised table. It has an open front with some diagonal slats, and we’re going to leave it in its rough-cut weathered condition,” said McAdam-Cambridge. “It’ll look great with a nice, big flower pot on each of it to kind of dress it up.”

McAdam-Cambridge explained that these jumps need to be built with big wood; she used two-by-sixes and two-by-eights to construct this particular obstacle. “You have to make the jumps sturdy enough so that if a horse goofs and lands on one, it won’t come crashing down,” said McAdam-Cambridge.

“Cross-country jumps, particularly at the lower levels, have to be quite wide and therefore inviting where it’s easiest for a horse to go over the jump and not think about deking out to one side or another,” said McAdam-Cambridge.

Peggy said that she plans to decorate the jump with flowers. “I’ll probably use like bright, red geraniums, something with a lot of nice color, red or dark pink. I wouldn’t use yellow or white on this, I’d want something with some real vibrant color.” The jump will be moved to the hayfield that the competition course will run through, and is likely to be enjoyed by local equestrians for years to come.

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