Montana de Oro State Park, Los Osos, CA - Sept. 11, 2008

Montana de Oro State Park, Los Osos, CA - Sept. 11, 2008

WE MET A GROUP OF TRAIL RIDERS AT MONTANA DE ORO (MOUNTAIN OF GOLD) STATE PARK ON THE CALIFORNIA COAST FOR A FEW DAYS OF RIDING.  THE PARK WAS LOCATED JUST OUTSIDE THE TOWN OF LOS OSOS, CA.

MONTANA DE ORO HAD 3 EQUESTRIAN CAMPGROUNDS. EACH HAD NICE PIPE CORRALS AND WATER FOR YOUR HORSES. A VAULT TOILET WAS PROVIDED. FIRE PITS WERE AVAILABLE FOR CAMPFIRES, WHICH WE ENJOYED EACH NIGHT. A PARKING AREA WAS PROVIDED FOR DAY RIDERS.

THE COAST OF CALIFORNIA HAS A MOUNTAIN RANGE JUST INLAND FROM THE OCEAN, AND AT TIMES THE MOUNTAINS MET THE SEA PROVIDING A ROCKY SHORELINE FOR THE SEA OTTERS AND SEALS TO PLAY.

THE TEMPERATURE ALONG THE COAST WAS QUITE COOL, AND A LIGHT JACKET FELT GOOD EVEN IN JULY. INLAND, AS YOU REACH THE MOUNTAINS AND THE CANYONS, THE TEMPERATURE ROSE INTO THE 70’S AND 80’S ON A SUNNY DAY. ONE AFTERNOON, THE FOG FROM THE OCEAN ROLLED IN, AND EVERYONE WAS LOOKING FOR THE WARMTH OF A SWEATSHIRT.

WE SADDLED UP ONE SUNNY MORNING AND WENT OUT ON A TRAIL THAT TOOK US UP INTO THE MOUNTAINS. AS THE NARROW TRAIL WOUND AROUND THE MOUNTAINS, WE HAD A PANORAMIC VIEW OF THE BEACH BELOW WITH WAVES BREAKING ON THE ROCKY SHORE. SEVERAL BOATS WERE SAILING OUT PAST THE BREAKING WAVES, A POSTCARD PICTURE FOR SURE.

SEVERAL VARIETIES OF WILDFLOWERS LINED THE TRAIL, AS THOUGH WE WERE RIDING THROUGH AN ENGLISH FLOWER GARDEN. THE TRAIL LED US DOWN INTO THE CANYON AND ACROSS A STREAM WITH THE LUSH GREEN GROWTH OF TREES AND WILLOWS.

AT TIMES, THE TRAILS WERE STEEP AND ROCKY AND OCCASIONALLY DIFFICULT, BUT THE REWARDS WERE VIEWS THAT WERE AWESOME.

A FRESH BREEZE WAS GENTLY BLOWING COOLING US IN THE NOON DAY SUN. SHADE WAS SCARCE ON THESE MOUNTAINS. THE WEATHER IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA WAS PLEASANT AND GREAT FOR RIDING. AFTER A FEW HOURS OF RIDING WE HEADED BACK TO CAMP.
 

THE NEXT DAY WE TOOK THE TRAIL DOWN TO THE BEACH. WE RODE BEHIND THE SAND DUNES AND PASSED WINDSWEPT TREES. SOME OF THE SAND DUNES WERE QUITE LARGE WITHOUT ANY TYPE OF VEGETATION GROWING ON THEM. THESE DUNES WERE USED ON MOVIE SETS FOR DESERT SCENES. FOR A MOMENT YOU COULD ENVISION LAWRENCE OF ARABIA RIDING HIS STEED ACROSS THE DESERT.

SOON THE TRAIL LED US OVER THE DUNES AND DOWN TO THE BEACH. FOG WAS LYING OUT OVER THE OCEAN, AND A COLD BREEZE WAS BLOWING OFF THE WATER.  WE TOOK THE HORSES FOR A RIDE IN THE SHALLOW WATER WITH SMALL WAVES BREAKING OVER THEIR LEGS.

SOON WE LEFT THE BEACH AND STARTED BACK TO CAMP AS THE SUN WAS SETTING IN THE WESTERN SKY OUT OVER THE OCEAN.
 
MONTANA DE ORO OFFERS MANY MILES OF EQUESTRIAN TRAILS IN THE MOUNTAINS AND ALONG THE SHORELINE.

AFTER SEVERAL DAYS OF GREAT RIDING, WE PACKED UP AND TRAVELED NORTH ALONG THE COAST TO OUR NEXT DESTINATION.

 

SEE YOU THERE……….

BOBBIE AND LARRY

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