The Hills are Alive

Spring has arrived, and the Central Coast hillsides are currently decorated with a stunning display of wildflowers.  Bright gatherings of yellow, purple and orange bless us with displays of glory at almost every turn this time of year.  While El Nino did not pack the punch that was predicted, we have enjoyed a closer to normal rainfall average this season, and the results are simply stunning.  Green hills, mustard yellow carpets, bright poppies, the complimentary lupine and a host of other little beauties are waiting for anyone who takes advantage of the time for a hike or a ride.

Margaret, Beverly, Laura in the wildflowers (1024x767)
Margaret, Beverly and Laura in the wildflowers.

Thanks to some friends, and a gracious ranch owner, I was treated to a wildflower tour on horseback recently.  Beverly invited me to join her and her friends for a morning ride on the Rocky Creek Cattle Ranch, a private working cattle ranch in Arroyo Grande owned by Dennis and Margaret Allan, and my senses were heightened with every step that my horse took.

Sharon (1024x768)
Sharon Jantzen enjoys the wildflowers.

The day was perfect for riding – a bit cool, with the sun breaking through the clouds sporadically.  The horses were all used to one another, and they easily handled the muddy creek crossings, the hilly terrain and the cattle interspersed throughout the ride.  While it felt amazing to be back in the saddle, it was hard not to be most awed by the displays of wildflowers, which were simply spectacular.

Margaret graciously shared her ranch.

Margaet on her ranch (1024x768)

The poppies covered the ridges in glory.

Poppies and purple (1024x768) (2)

Poppy ridge (1024x767)

So, get out now and enjoy the intense displays of wildflowers in our amazing San Luis Obispo County while they last.  Take the time to appreciate the simple and the complex designs, and delight your senses while opening your eyes to wonder.  The Central Coast is simply a marvelous place to live and to ride, especially this time of year!

Bev (1024x768)
Thank you for the Birthday ride, Beverly!

Photos: Sharon Jantzen

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