Santa Barbara and Rancho Oso

After 7 weeks in California, it’s time to go.  I can’t say I’m very sad to leave.  It hasn’t exactly been my favorite state to visit during our travels.  I think I have a love/hate relationship with the state.  It is very beautiful and the weather is wonderful.  The lack of bugs is also very nice.  What I don’t like is all the crowds.  There is just way too many people in Southern California.  It was difficult to go anywhere that wasn’t overly crowded.  And in some areas the people are just not that friendly.  But for the most part we really enjoyed our stay, and I think I especially enjoyed this most recent stay in Santa Barbara the best.  It seems the further we got away from Los Angeles the better.  Santa Barbara was a lot less crowded and a lot more friendly!

We stayed at Thousand Trails Rancho Oso which is probably my favorite Thousand Trails (TT) we have stayed at so far.  It has all the normal TT park activities like a pool, mini-golf and candy bar bingo.  But it is also on a beautiful ranch where you can see lots of horses and amazing views like this one.


They even have a Stock Dog and Bucking Bull show that was really fun.  During the show they explained how they train dogs to round-up cattle and how they train bulls for rodeos.


Duke the dog, rounding up the cattle.



Duke trying to round-up the last bull that was not cooperating.


Pony training.


That’s not a real person on this bull.



We walked the hiking trail at the campground to the “waterfall”.  Since there is currently a drought in California, there was no waterfall, but we did the hike anyway.



You don’t have to own an RV to camp at this campground.  You can stay in one of these cute covered wagons.



Or in one of these little cottages.


Or even in a teepee!


Beautiful views at Rancho Oso!


An added bonus of our stay — we were parked next to another Fulltime Family (FtF).  We met this family at Wilderness Lakes in June and it turned out we were planning to be at this park at the same time.  We had so much fun spending time with them, and we look forward to seeing them again soon!


Our sightseeing from this location included a visit to the cute little Danish town of Solvang.  My sister gave me the t-shirt last Christmas and now I can say that I have been there.





Santa Barbara was absolutely beautiful and so much fun to visit since it wasn’t too crowded.


We still had the FtF mascot Rambler with us to take him on one more field trip.  Then we passed him off to the FtF staying next to us.  We enjoyed having Rambler travel with us for a couple of months and hope he enjoys his continued travels with the Smith family.



We also visited the Santa Barbara Zoo and the Sea Center.  We were able to go to both places for free because they are included on our Friends of the WNC Nature Center pass.  This pass only cost us $64 for our family for one year.  It gets us into many participating zoos, aquariums and science centers all over the country.  It’s a great deal for traveling families.

This spot at the zoo was so beautiful, you can see the Pacific Ocean peaking through the trees in the background.


The ocean on one side and mountains on the other.


Penguins in California!  I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, they have them at the Jacksonville Zoo in Florida too.



Touching sea animals at the Sea Center.





And finally, for those of you who are wondering what Fat Cat was up to in Santa Barbara, see below.  Besides this, she stayed busy chasing squirrels outside of our camper.  The squirrels are very happy we left!


That’s all for now.  Bye California!  We’ll probably see you again next year to explore more to the north of where we went this year.

Categories: California | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Santa Barbara and Rancho Oso

  1. DeniseMcKay

    Beautiful area, too bad we didn’t stay longer.


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