Horse Life

Trailer Reno

Last year I considered getting rid of my 2 horse Hawk trailer and getting something with a small LQ. In the end, though, I just couldn’t part with the Hawk. The main reason being that I haul ALOT. I go somewhere just about every week between lessons, trail rides and shows. Most shows are local so no need to camp. Plus, most LQ trailers in my budget were a 3 horse slant, which would be even more wasted space. I most likely will never have more than one horse, and didn’t want to drag around a larger trailer all the time for a few weekends a year of camping.

Old Faithful

So last June I had my local trailer shop install an RV battery that controls the interior lights/awning, and add a 30 amp hookup, a rooftop AC unit and an electrical outlet in the dressing room. I’ve used it to camp about 6 times and while I love it, upgrades are needed.

I love the awning and use it often. It’s electric, but I can manually adjust it as well, to account for rain or sun position. I have a green carpet that I put down under the awning and secure it with lawn stakes, then put my chairs and table under it. A doormat and a stool go in front of the door.


I sleep in the GN portion of the trailer, which isn’t insulated. During the summer I would get woken up from condensation dripping on my face. And in the winter I brought my electric fireplace from home, but quickly found I had to have it blowing directly on me in order to stay warm. So insulation is a huge priority.




Husband and BO’s Husband shoved insulation foam board into the ribs of the ceiling, and secured with aluminum tape, then added furring strips screwed into the frame. Next is to cover with material stapled to the furring strips, then cover the staples with trim. Like so:

I’m also trying to get Husband to build that open shelf in the nose area

Then Husband tore out ALL THE CARPET- this actually went super fast, as it was just stapled down rather than glued, and the wood floors beneath the carpet are in good shape.

Husband hard at work
Dressing room floor
GN floor

The dressing room floor and the GN floor will have insulation placed on them, then covered with plywood, and the GN wall will get insulation strapped to it with tape.

After installing the insulation, we’re using leftover wood from our library floor to cover the dressing room floor. I keep saying “we” but I really mean Husband.


And fluffy carpet will go in the GN area.


I’m a bit torn on what to put on the walls, but have to decide quickly. Matt will frame over the insulation, like so:


Then there’s so many options. Many have suggested paneling, but then others say using big sheets of paneling (most come in 48″ x 8′) is difficult, and recommend tongue and groove planks. The drawback to that is the time it takes to cover the entire area.

While I love the look of dark wood, I’m probably going to go with a lighter color because the dressing room is already so small and I don’t need it to feel smaller. I’m thinking wood colored like the below picture, including some backsplash to make it look a little fancier:


And getting some of these battery operated puck lights to brighten everything up:


Now the tricky part.  My dressing room is 5′ long and 4′ wide. I don’t ever use the saddle racks because I load everything in my cart, so I need 40″ of floor space for that. I know I want cabinets/bench/steps, but can’t decide on exactly WHAT that will look like.

Current setup

The saddle racks themselves are removable, but the column that holds the saddle rack is welded on there. I can’t decide if I want to have it cut out and the wall sanded down smooth or just leave it and have the cabinet/counter cut around it.

The other thing is that I need access to the outlet and breaker box. I’m thinking I want a counter top over the top of the breaker box, and then curtains to hid anything underneath. I’d like to put a mini fridge underneath, then a little microwave or convection oven on the counter, so the counter will need a hole to get a cord down to reach the outlet. At first I was going to have base cabinets installed, but decided on a counter for easier access to the outlets, like this:

Like the circled part in this picture, except with some curtains.

Then I want cabinets above the counter, somewhat like these (painted/stained):


Then for this short wall, and along the GN wall, I want steps with some storage. They’d be pretty narrow since I wouldn’t want them sticking out past the door, but every little bit of storage helps.


These steps are what I’m most heavily leaning towards:


And then a tall cabinet on the inside of the door:

Like this, only on the opposite wall

And then I have no clue what to do with this wall:


We’re going to remove the bridle hooks to insulate and then I have to decide what to do from there. The wall is flush with the door, so no cabinets can go along the floor, and the window is high enough that I can’t put anything above it either. So that’s a bit of a conundrum. The window is useless- it doesn’t open and is a total pain to clean. So I’ve got to figure out something.

Right now I have a lot of gear stored in the GN of the trailer. Camping stuff, chairs, buckets, extra tack, meds, etc. I keep most of it in trunks that get stored outside under the GN when I camp, but I’m going to add the Gladiator Storage System to the horse area to get rid of some of the clutter.


I’d like to add a rail to the front of the horse area to hang things like my pitchfork, broom, shovel, lunge line, lunge whip, and step stool. Then add rails with the baskets like the picture above to the passenger side horse stall. If another horse travels with us, I can remove the baskets easily.

Now for some way in the future wishes.

This is my current shower setup:


I’ve actually never used the solar shower part, just used the tent for changing when kids were in the dressing room. I’d LOVE to add a cowboy shower to the horse area someday:


But have no concept of what that would even entail, so haven’t looked too hard into it.

And then this, which is probably not too far off in the future:


Having this would double the living space since the awning is of no use if it’s really windy or raining too hard to leave it out. It would be nice to get a couple of inflatable couches or chairs, and if the Husband and kids come with, would negate the need for Matt & Justin to sleep in the truck bed tent.

Husband has off from March 30-April 9, so hopefully the majority of this stuff will need to get done then. Luckily BO’s husband is a general contractor and BO has already agreed to loan him out to help.

Wish us (re: Husband) luck!


23 thoughts on “Trailer Reno”

  1. Amazing. Wow. I wish my husband was that handy! LOL And now i can ‘stalk’ you and know what you are in when I arrive at a venue to see you..b.ahhhahhaa ….(evil laugh)…

    That is great you can sleep in your trailer. I do realize I am going to have shell out money for hotels in my future showing. No more 10 minutes from Fair Hill. GRHHH 🙂

    Can’t wait to see your trailer all done (And is it sad when i saw the title i thought you had gone to Reno? I am an idiot) HA


    1. Husband is generally pretty good at figuring all the stuff out. I just need it done NOW and that’s where our opinions differ 😊 It’s soooo nice sleeping in the trailer- wake up, feed, and walk 2 minutes back to the trailer to go to sleep. And pretty much all the venues I go to, the hotels are at least 20 minutes away from the grounds. NO THANKS

      Reno…omg 😂😂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Don’t be surprised when your husband shows up to do all the renovations and your trailer looks a little different… I may have swapped trailers with you for the weekend 😉 hahaha!!!!

    Can’t wait to see the end results!!!!! I’ve debated about doing something similar to my trailer but so far I haven’t really done a lot of showing that wasn’t local or the weather was nice enough to just suck it up in the gooseneck and get dripped on by the condensation. But it would be nice to start showing with friends and have a sweet camping setup!!!! (cough cough sign up for FENCE cough cough, you have until tomorrow cough cough)


    1. Ha! Depending on how he does, I may make him offer his services to others.

      I was so on the fence about FENCE (see what I did there 😂) but I think I’m going to pass for now. P and I have jumped literally one course in the last 3 months and we really need some XC work. But I might be able to come out and cheer you on!


      1. Makes sense! And puns about FENCE is one of the many reason I like the venue 😂 and yes! Come hang out if you are free that weekend!!


  3. Oh wow nice! I like the goosenecks and eventually want to get a 2 horse straight or slant (but slant will have a ramp) and then revamp the inside like you guys are doing so I can have some good insulation when I put a mattress there lol. This looks like a really awesome job tho – and I’m super excited to see how it all looks! It’s so nice having someone handy that can help you with that :).


    1. What I’ve found is that most slants don’t have a ramp, but straight loads usually do. Mine is straight load with a ramp and I love it- a reason I didn’t want to sell it. I had no idea about the insulation so the first time I woke up to practically rain pouring down over me I was sooooo freaked out.


  4. Those are great plans. Can’t wait to see it all finished. I understand the choice to upgrade/renovate this one versus going to a LQ. Those suckers can get big fast and unless you can afford a separate smaller day trip trailer, it seems like a waster to haul around. You will be show camping in style come summer.


    1. Exactly! Do I really want to a haul a 3 Horse LQ trailer to the local trails and my trainers’? Nah. But I also don’t want water dripping in my face everytime I sleep in it!


  5. Meanwhile I’m over here like, “Probably ought to wash my trailer at some point this year…” 😉 Can’t wait to see the end product!


    1. Ambitious for Husband, yes. I just sorta point to what I want and look up things at Lowe’s 😂 He’s pretty handy though, and can typically figure out most anything!


  6. This is like wow! So as far as the walls go, my friend covered her walls in a kind of metal display grating and then she can add hooks or whatever to it wherever she needs to. It’s hard to describe but her Tack Room was a thing of organizational beauty.


    1. I know what you’re taking about- I looked at one of those for the horse area but since we occasionally take another horse with us, I wanted something that could be easily taken down. And I want the dressing room to feel less like a tack room and more like a mini hotel. We’ll see how it comes out though!


  7. We shower in our trailer, but we just use a kiddie pool to collect the water. Not very sophisticated. Are you a member of the Horse Trailer Conversions II Group on FB? A lot of people have added cowboy showers and it seems pretty doable.


  8. this is really awesome, i love trailer renos. I thought about adding a light camp situation to my gooseneck, i think it would be really fun to stay there for overnight shows. then I could be SUPER close to the horse. So feel free to post plenty about how its going! sounds like you have a good plan.


    1. I loooove camping at shows. Most of the shows I go to have the closest hotels 20 min away and it’s such a pain, especially when you’re there alone like I usually am.


  9. You’re living my renovation dream. Can’t wait to hear how it comes together! I love all of your ideas. Had never seen the canopy tent combo – very cool.


    1. Isn’t that the coolest thing? There are things that attach to the awning and stay there, then when you unroll the awning you zip the panels right to the attachment and boom! Instant room.


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