As the last horses get ready to leave this property for good, I can’t help but think about all the amazing times that were had here. Horses have been on this property for at least 70 years. I have little information about the early days, but there is evidence of horse activities as early as the 1950s. Check out Lucia’s Leapers scratched into the concrete in 1953 (see pix). Right next to it are the words Sea Horse Farms. Was that the early stable name? I don’t know, but it’s possible. I do know the stable was called Clark Ranch for many years. Then it was Pomegranate Equestrian Center, and lastly, it was Sunset Horse Ranch.
Think of all the kids that learned to love horses on this little slice of heaven, all the friendships made, and dreams realized. My own daughter got her first pony here. We leased her a little white pony named AutoPilot. Pilot was a Christmas present and was wrapped in a huge red bow on Christmas morning. It was such a magical time for our family. Similar stories to ours played out so many times on this land. Girls of all ages getting their first horse and falling in love with the sport. It’s practically hallowed grounds. I can find quite a few initals, handprints and hoofprints left in the concrete. Memories of long ago friendships and adventures.
It makes me so sad to see this property turned into a retirement home. I know it was inevitable. Property values are rising. It’s happening all over North County….Seabreeze, Kalimar, and now Sunset. It’s a big loss to the San Diego community though. Everyone says we need more parks, but I think we need more horse ranches. When was the last time you made a life long friend at a park? How many people have gone to a park everyday rain or shine for years on end? Certainly not me. But you can find me at a horse ranch even in the middle of a storm!
Think of how many valuable lessons are learned through horses…. Patience, conquering fears, and even money management (living on Ramen noodles to afford your first horse). Every kid should have a chance to be around horses. There is so much to be gained.
I wish I knew more of the stories from this ranch. More of the happy times. It seems too quiet now. No kids, a few remaining horses waiting to move on to their next stable, abandoned paddocks that will never see a horse again. I can’t ever remember this place being so quiet. It’s like a ghost town. Sad.
I snapped a few pix as I wondered around the barn the other day… No one else in sight. I just wanted something to remember this place by. I was here for many years when it was Pomegranate and a year or two in the early Sunset days. I have a ton of good memories as I am sure so many do.
Today I feel like I am saying goodbye to an old friend. This ranch was once an integral part of my daily life. Soon it will all be plowed over. All the cryptic initials in the cement lost forever. All that will be left are the memories…