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Our Day with the Gipper.

We fight about a lot of things, why not bring politics in as well?   One of our political heroes is President Ronald Reagan.  We admire his strong character and unyielding love of country.  In our recent visit to Southern California we had our day with the Gipper.  Our tribute involved riding horseback into the Ranch in the Clouds then we boarded Air Force One !

1000 Fights on horseOur day of Reagan began at the Circle B Ranch.  Located just 30 minutes north of Santa Barbara, California, the Circle Bar B is nestled in the scenic hills of central California.  Finding the ranch is simple and part of the experience.  If headed north from Santa Barbara on 101 just take the Refugo Beach exit and head east through orange and lemon groves.  The Circle Bar B is perfect for families and couples alike.  They offer a number of different ride options ranging from half day rides to hour long treks.  We chose the half day ride that took us along President Reagan’s ranch.

santa barbara, caWe boarded our mounts Silver and Traveler and headed up the hill with our guide Alex.   The ranch owns an expansive tract of land up into the mountains.  The trail crosses a number of small creeks and passes a gorgeous water fall.  Once you gain some altitude you see amazing vistas of the Pacific.  The trial weaves in and out sweet smelling Eucalyptus groves.  The ride was a treat from start to finish.

It’s easy to see why President Reagan relished his time spent at the “Western Whitehouse”.  The place is so peaceful.  The vistas recharge the soul.  The next time you are in SoCal, take in a ride!


Ronald Reagan Museum

Official Portrait of President Ronald Reagan.

Image via Wikipedia

In our travels we have had a chance to visit a number of presidential libraries.  We love them.  It is a great way to see items attached to history.  The tribute to Ronald Reagan is truly the finest.   Ronald Reagan Library and Museum is located on a hilltop with sweeping views of Simi valley is the final resting place of the President.  As you would expect, there is a healthy dose of hero worship throughout.

The world truly changed while President Reagan occupied the White House.   As you walk around the courtyard you see a impressive display of a section of the Berlin Wall.

Key items to see in the museum:

1)Tender note from Margaret Thatcher to Nancy Reagan after his passing.

Ronald Reagan Limo2)  As is military tradition at the passing of leaders, boots are placed backward in a saddled horse’s stirrups.  Ronald Reagan, a skilled horseman,  was treated to this honor at his passing.  His actual riding boots were used in lieu of a shinny unused pair.  The boots are on display in the collection.

3)The holiday season is a unique time to visit the library.  A collection of ornate monorahs and a hall of Christmas trees are on display.

4)For you fashion gurus out there, Nancy’s famous red dress circa the first inauguration is on display.

5)  The suit that President Reagan was wearing when he was shot is on display.  You can see where the two bullets went in.  Incredible.

Air Force OneOne of the most impressive parts of the museum is the massive indoor display of Air Force One the presidential Jet used by Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and the two Bushies .   The display is so clever.  The plane appears like it is flying through the middle of the display hall and out in to the wall of windows.  It is an amazing effect.  Museum entrance fee allows you a walk through of one of the most celebrated air craft in history.

Both experiences are not to be missed regardless of your political stripes.  The majestic beauty of the first and the history lesson of the second is not to be missed.

The nearest major airport is in Los Angeles, CA.  There are a number cheap flights to Los Angeles.