Today I spent an amazing day at the Samuels Ranch on the ridgeline of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Napa and Solano Counties, California. Our hosts Jasmine and Yuri took us to several areas of the ranch to observe the sheep, take in the amazing views, and enjoy the many native wildflowers that grow on the property. The views were incredible - at one vista point we could see Mount Diablo, Mount Tamalpais, Mount St. Helena, and Snow Mountain. On the other side of the ridge, there are great views of the lower Sacramento Valley and on clear days the Sierra Nevada in the distance. Wildflowers included adobe lily, Pacific pea, soap root, the leaves of fairly lanterns (which should be blooming shortly), baby blue eyes, blue-eyed Mary, virgin's bower, woolly sunflower, hound's-tongue (which was extra appropriate since we were accompanied on our hike by two of the ranch dogs), wild cucumber complete with spiky fruits, and so many others.
The ranch is still recovering from the devastating fires of 2020 but signs of new life are abundant and heartening. Western bluebirds, goldfinch, a hummingbird, ravens, and turkey vultures were flying overhead and roosting in the snags and deer prints were evident on the dirt road. Ceanothus and manzanita seedlings were abundant and many black oaks were resprouting from their roots.
Be sure to put Samuels Ranch on your list of nearby beautiful places to visit. -- Jane Hicks
The hike was beautiful and informative. A great experience overall!! ~ Linda Lake
"It's a beautiful venue... usually, you would pay twice as much for this kind of space, and it's so private!"
~ Vera B., Sister of the Groom
I had no idea you could see the Bay from here! ~Mike M.