A beautiful sunny Saturday and a big turnout for a trail ride, 19 equestrians from the Horse & Mule Trail Riders of the 805 MeetUp and Los Padres Trail Riders gathered at a private home to begin our adventure.
We rode for 2 hours and went 5.35 miles, a scenic stroll through the open space of More Mesa and then alongside some of the great estates of Hope Ranch.
Afterwards we had a wonderful luncheon catered by a generous hostess, and left with enthusiasm to ride together again soon.
Old pals on new horses, former members of clubs eager to rejoin and once again ride in good company.
Many of these women rode these trails as wild teenagers together, so there was lots to catch up on now that they are retired ladies of a certain age!
Hope Ranch is an unincorporated suburb of Santa Barbara, set out as an equestrian community of estates on the coastline.
It has 27 miles of riding trails, mostly access passageways between the property borders. 10% of the property owners are owners of equines.
The trails are "informal" and fairly well maintained, but a mule or horse needs to keep a sharp eye where they are stepping to avoid the ground squirrel holes.
Dappled light is a nice rest for the eyes after the bright glare of the Mesa sun.
Out of the woodland, we doubled back on an access road at the Mesa's edge.
And once again the caravan of 19 riders went up and over the Mesa trails.
In most places it is effective. Not all.
At this seaside property Tobe was absolutely riveted by the sight of a pony and a donkey. How the other half lives!
"Gratitude is a sign of noble souls"
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