Ventura Ranch (KOA) Santa Paula, CA (Nov 1 - 8th, 2010)
Ventura Ranch is located between Santa Paula, CA and Ojai, CA. It sits above a valley and the sites are quite nice -- with trees and peacocks walking around the campground. Buddy chased them a couple of times but of course they flew up in the trees and really made a squawking sound from above. The weather was very warm -- their Indian summer as some claimed. Ninety's during the day and it would cool down to the 50's at night. KOA had just acquired this campground late in 2009 and were slowly redoing the bathrooms, the clubhouse and a planned pool that did not get put in this year due to permit delays. They had a great area for kids/teens with a rope climbing wall, Bigfoot's path to the babbling stream and actual Tepee's that you can camp overnight in. Jason ventured to LA a couple of days and we ventured out to Santa Barbara where we tested the Pacific Ocean waters to find out they were very cold. Most surfers had wet suits on so you know it was pretty cold even though the air was in the 90's. Didn't bother Buddy a bit though. We went to Ojai's film festival where we sat in on an actor's panel with Craig Nelson, Brett Cullen, Nick Thurston, Emily Hahn & Paul Weber. They told us how they got into their careers and what they thought of the new green screening and technology of today. The consensus was that the new technology took away the fun part of their jobs. We did a little wine tasting as well in the quaint little town. Another day we went to St. Thomas Aquinas Catholic Church. Beautiful church and surroundings. Mass was partly in Latin and communion was given the old way where you kneeled along the alter and the priest delivered your holy bread. We then proceeded back to Ojai and rode our bikes 16 miles to the Pacific Ocean in Ventura, CA. We convinced Jason to ride back to Ojai to pick up the car and drive down to pick us up while we rode our bikes along the Ocean and waited for him. Riding to the ocean was mostly downhill; returning was uphill but Jason is always a good sport. Santa Paula was a very nice town and had a great train depot which always entices Mike.