Agricultural trophies (6/10). Equi Feeling combines horse riding, animal care and ecology

Horseback riding in the middle of nature, suggested by her parents when she was a teenager and her life had meaning. “That was the only day I smiled,” she recalls. Visually impaired Florine Fremont now knew that her path was sealed and that she would dedicate her life to horses. Combining training, diplomas and professional experience, she designed her project and built her curriculum with the sole purpose of creating her “equestrian structure with a behavioral approach to the horse, to train and rehabilitate horses and support riders through this philosophy.”

Very attached to her roots and her family, Florine Fremont decided to leave her region, Picardy. “In the area where I lived – in Aisne – the land is very cultivated. I had to make compromises that weren’t what I wanted: I wanted room for the horse to move freely. »

Autonomous site for electricity and water

And it was in the Côte d’Or, a stone’s throw from Chaux, far from all inhabited places, that she found a wasteland that won all the votes for her. “We had to project ourselves. Here we are on an isolated site and I was going to do a standalone installation. This is unusual for a horse farm where the demand for water is high. My ideas were a bit atypical and people thought I was crazy,” she admits.

A titanic challenge that he was not afraid of. “I believed. Otherwise, I could not present my project. I faced serious administrative inconsistencies, and I had a lot of rejections,” she says. It took more than a year of the process, which she compares to five years of vital energy. She lost five kilograms , she had panic attacks, but she persevered.A long and difficult path, littered with pitfalls that did not discourage her.On the contrary, she threw herself headlong into this innovative project and never gave up, even when she had to spend six months in the middle of winter in trailer due to lack of water and electricity.

Together with her then-girlfriend Florine Fremont, in 2017 she created Equi Feeling, her haven of calm, where everything is in harmony with nature. For the buildings, she wanted to use materials that are in complete harmony with the environment. “The tree was obvious,” she says. He turned to companies in the sector for local species. Places for placing horses, a grooming platform, a carousel … All structures are made in a wooden frame.

Off grid, its 2.5 ha equestrian complex is powered by the sun, which feeds the entire area thanks to 54 m² of photovoltaic panels. “A system that is managed differently than a traditional structure because consumption peaks must be avoided. Therefore, everything that is an electrical appliance should be excluded. The carousel is equipped with LEDs, the least energy-intensive lamps, which allows to reduce electricity consumption.

With regard to water resources, she invited three geobiologists who checked the area and gave their recommendations. “Drilling was carried out at a depth of 230 meters. He draws from the stream of water, and not from under the groundwater. We didn’t put in a lot of flow so as not to pump a lot, and drilling provides a semi-underground tank that can hold 10,000 liters. » Each roof also has rainwater recovery for horse consumption, watering or cleaning. Regularly, Florin Fremont does not miss an opportunity to raise public awareness about water conservation. She also put up a poster at shower level and encourages visitors to use rainwater whenever possible.

Recycled felt floor

The 35 year old manager of Equi Feeling wanted to take the concept of environmental responsibility as far as possible. Everything is thought out and thought out to the smallest detail. “In order to feel in harmony with nature, being protected by a roof, the arena is not fenced. It is more of an 800 m² indoor arena that allows you to develop with your horse. »

For the floor, she did not choose sand, a material widely used in equestrian facilities, but requiring regular watering and, therefore, a large amount of water. Instead, she opted for a floor made from recycled felt shavings, which is flexible, dust-free, year-round and waterproof. In addition, “this flexible and soft soil is very comfortable for both the horse’s joints and the rider if a fall does occur,” she elaborates.

Finally, for an open pit, brand new development that dates back to February, Florine Fremont is experimenting with a “new” floor, testing oak chips that require no maintenance or watering.

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