Rancho Oso Caters to Horse Enthusiasts

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May 25, 2011 by   - () Leave a Comment

Jackie Friedlander spends most of her days working as an equine veterinarian in Santa Monica, Calif.

But when she needs a break, she escapes with her husband to Rancho Oso Guest Ranch and Resort in the mountains near Santa Barbara, and they spend the weekend going horseback riding and enjoying the sights and sounds of nature, according to a news release.

“It’s fantastic,” Julie Friedlander said. “The park is always clean. The trails are well maintained. It’s great for families. And it always feels quiet and peaceful no matter how many people are there.”

Rancho Oso, in fact, is one of a relatively small number of RV camping resorts in Southern California that also caters to horse enthusiasts.

“Our location is one of a few left where you have unlimited riding because you can ride from our property onto hundreds of miles of national forest trail,” said Lillian Rosen, a reservations and marketing representative for the park, which is about a 30-minute drive from either Santa Barbara or Solvang.

In addition to having over 100 RV and tent sites with full hookups and free Wi-Fi service, Rancho Oso has pipe corrals for more than 50 horses as well as other amenities, including two swimming pools, a Jacuzzi, a miniature golf course as well as areas for people to play basketball and horseshoes. The resort also offers hiking, guided trail rides, planned recreation activities, meals on weekends and a camp store.

And don’t worry if you don’t have an RV or tent. Rancho Oso has five rental cabins, plus a Western-themed village with furnished covered wagons that guests can rent out for an unforgettable night in the Great Outdoors.

“We’ve arranged the covered wagons in circles around campfire rings, so families can camp just like they did in the pioneer days,” Rosen said.

Rancho Oso is one of many parks in the Thousand Trails camping club network. But you don’t have to be a member to spend a night there or enjoy its horse-friendly amenities. Rancho Oso is open to the public.

Rancho Oso is affiliated with the California Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds. For more information about Rancho Oso, please visit its website at

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