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Oak Glen: the Heart of Apple Growing In Southern California

Updated on April 29, 2010
GarnetBird profile image

Gloria taught for many years, and also worked as a mental health group facilitator.

Go Back In Time at Oak Glen Ranch..

I took these photos April/2010-This is a lovely apple blossom on Riley's Ranch.
I took these photos April/2010-This is a lovely apple blossom on Riley's Ranch.
The Shires were out, pulling the hay wagon and everyone was delighted to watch.
The Shires were out, pulling the hay wagon and everyone was delighted to watch.
This is the pond on Riley's Ranch.  It has Woodland Ducks and Coots.
This is the pond on Riley's Ranch. It has Woodland Ducks and Coots.
The area around Oak Glen.
The area around Oak Glen.
More pond views.
More pond views.
Poet's Bench--a place by the pond for writers. One of my favorite photos/taken April 2010.
Poet's Bench--a place by the pond for writers. One of my favorite photos/taken April 2010.
I can almost see a turtle popping up!
I can almost see a turtle popping up!
This is the hiking Trail around the Ranch.  On this spot a few years ago I encountered a Bobcat.
This is the hiking Trail around the Ranch. On this spot a few years ago I encountered a Bobcat.
The petting zoos boast frisky goats, sheep and other gentle animals.Enjoy my photos;  they were all taken by Yours Truly on the same afternoon in April.
The petting zoos boast frisky goats, sheep and other gentle animals.Enjoy my photos; they were all taken by Yours Truly on the same afternoon in April.
Inside a typical Oak Glen Apple Store. I ended up buying organic honey in the comb from Georgia!
Inside a typical Oak Glen Apple Store. I ended up buying organic honey in the comb from Georgia!
Oak Tree Village.  There is a nice cafe here and a zoo.
Oak Tree Village. There is a nice cafe here and a zoo.
Courtesy of google images: note the wetlands conservancy sign.
Courtesy of google images: note the wetlands conservancy sign.
Courtesy google images:  you can always come back home to Oak Glen!
Courtesy google images: you can always come back home to Oak Glen!

An April afternoon...

 Oak Glen is the very heart of apple growing in Southern California. It sits fifteen miles north of San Bernardino and can be reached by driving up Bryant Road from Mentone. The orchards produce Vasquez and King David varieties, as well as unusual types such as Ben Davis, Gravenstein and Pink Pearl. There are delightful little antique and gift stores, as well as places to eat and enjoy their  amazing Apple Pie. Not in the mood for pie?  try their apple butter or apple crisp. The cafes have homey, old-fashioned menus and even cater to those of you who prefer Mexican cuisine.

The history of this area is fascinating and diverse.  The Serrano and Cahuilla Indians harvested acorns in this fertile, lush place, and their metates can still be found in stream beds. The potato was the first crop the settlers grew;  when Enoch Parrish opened his apple orchard in 1876, it created a new landscape and opened the door for other growers. Many families such as the Laws, still own and operate the original apple pie diner.  You can enjoy picking your own basket of apples from many of the ranches, while drinking a cooling glass of cold cider.  This is extremely educational for children as well.  The little zoo is always stocked with a wonderful variety of small animals, including ponies.

The hiking area is owned by the Wildland Trust Foundation and hosts  many birds and mammals.  Deer, Bobcat, California Black bear, as well as an occasional rattle snake populate the landscape. If you want a relaxing day for mere pennies on the dollar, put the kids in the car, bring a picnic blanket and drive back in time to a sweeter place. If you enjoy geocaching, there are caches (hidden treasures) to be found here as well.

Comments

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    • GarnetBird profile imageAUTHOR

      Gloria Siess 

      8 years ago from Wrightwood, California

      THANK you for your comments; it's such a special place, isn't it?

    • David R Bradley profile image

      David R Bradley 

      8 years ago from The Active Side of Infinity

      I used to work at Riley's after High School and simply loved it. Many fond memories of Oak Glen. Thanks for this Hub!

    • GarnetBird profile imageAUTHOR

      Gloria Siess 

      8 years ago from Wrightwood, California

      It's a therapy outing and very affordable--even for me! haha

    • profile image

      "Quill" 

      8 years ago

      Great photo journalism...loved the picture of the bench in the shade, peaceful and I could taste the apples.

      Hugs

    • GarnetBird profile imageAUTHOR

      Gloria Siess 

      8 years ago from Wrightwood, California

      I clicked too soon on Publish, before I could add my little write up. I plan to add more photos as I revisit.

    • Rochelle Frank profile image

      Rochelle Frank 

      8 years ago from California Gold Country

      We used to go to Oak Glen every Fall for the apple season when we lived in Southern California. This brings back nice memories. You need to add a little backstory here.

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