Hope Ranch, California

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The eastern entrance to Hope Ranch, showing the main thoroughfare through the unincorporated community

Hope Ranch is an unincorporated suburb of Santa Barbara, California, located in Santa Barbara County. As of the 2000 census, the area had an approximate population of 2,200. The ZIP codes are 93105 and 93110, and the community is in area code 805.

History[edit]

Hope Ranch is named after Irishman Thomas Hope, who purchased the land in 1861 for sheep ranching. Following his death in 1876, his heirs sold the ranch for $250,000 to the Southern Pacific Railroad, who intended to develop the land. It was not until Harold Chase purchased the land in 1923 that the area was developed into the residential area that exists today.[1]

Geography[edit]

Since it is not a census-designated place, the boundaries are informal, except where they coincide with incorporated regions. On the east Hope Ranch is bounded by the City of Santa Barbara, on the north by Modoc Road, Hollister Avenue, and Vieja Drive, on the west by a vacant tract of land known as More Mesa, and on the south by the Pacific Ocean.

Geology[edit]

Hope Ranch occupies a hilly area immediately adjacent to the coast; the highest elevation is 691 feet (211 m). The northern boundary of the hilly area is Cieneguitas Creek, which flows down the topographic expression of the More Ranch Fault; this ravine also helps define the informal northern boundary of the suburb. Native vegetation is mostly California oak woodland and chaparral, and many of the homes have been constructed to blend in with the oaks; the area retains much of its tree canopy. Residential roads are narrow and winding, not always signed, and interweave with an elaborate network of horse paths. A road to a private beach is open to residents only (although the beach itself is accessible from public beaches on either side).

Access[edit]

The local homeowner's association manages the properties of private roads, bridle trails, and the private beach. The private regions are not governed by conventional police. Instead the law enforcement of these regions are the privately enrolled "Hope Ranch Patrol," who have only limited law enforcing powers. This group is controlled by the board of Hope Ranch and is in no way connected to either the City of Santa Barbara Police Department or the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office, though recently Hope Ranch is allowing the Santa Barbara Police Department and the California Highway Patrol to make a presence in Hope Ranch.

The main stretch of road through Hope Ranch is Las Palmas/Marina Drive, a palm tree-lined stretch of roadway along which runs the coastal bike route. Hope Ranch is home to La Cumbre Country Club and Laguna Blanca School, an independent day school, which was founded in 1933.

Hope Ranch is one of the wealthiest areas in California; the median home price was $2.61 million in 2006.[2]

Famous residents of Hope Ranch[edit]

  • Wendy McCaw - Billionaire Owner of Santa Barbara News Press
  • H.R. Haldeman family - H.R. Haldeman was White House Chief of Staff under Richard Nixon. H.R. After his term, Haldeman lived in Hope Ranch until his death in 1993.
  • Snoop Dogg - purchased a house in November 2006.
  • Fess Parker - Actor and businessman.
  • Vera Ralston - Figure skater and actress.

Coordinates: 34°25′19″N 119°46′15″W / 34.421944°N 119.770833°W / 34.421944; -119.770833

Sources[edit]