Even though Smile Senior Care encourages our seniors to cultivate their own gardens, sometimes we have limited space. A great way to get fresh produce is to go apple picking. Take your home care aide and make a day of it. You can even bring the whole family. There are some wonderful locations just outside the Los Angeles area to pick apples and much more!
Riley’s at Los Rios Rancho
39611 S Oak Glen Rd.
Yucaipa, CA 92399
There’s a lot more to do here than just pick a bunch of apples, although that task could take up your whole day. There are three size options for picking: a small bag for $10 that holds about 5 pounds of apples, a medium sized for $15 bag that holds about 10 pounds, and a $30 box that holds 15-20 pounds.
Los Rios Rancho is owned by The Wildlands Conservancy, a California nonprofit that works to preserve open spaces, and offers a lovely hike through its grounds. Fun Orange County Parks blogger Michele Whiteaker profiled part of the journey on her site. Of the apple-picking, she shares some tips (quoted with permission):
• Plan to go on a weekend
• ARRIVE EARLY – as with all worthwhile trips – this place gets busy as the day progresses. The earlier you arrive, the easier time you’ll have with parking and lines for food and gifts.
• If I were to go again, I’d plan to get to the parking lot between 8 and 8:30am.
• I’m sure we’re not typical, but we only spent $15 on our bag of apples and $4 ($1 each) on the corn maze. So apart from gas, it was a really reasonably-priced family outing. A whole day of fun for just under $20! You could easily spend more on apple pies, apple cider, and some of the BBQ they were cooking up for lunch.
• LOTS of hills. Be prepared for some exercise on uneven ground. Babies would do best in backpacks, slings, or jogger strollers. We saw some families bring wagons which were good for carrying kids, apples, pumpkins, etc. – but they might be a tough trek on the hilly terrain.
• Only portable toilets out in the apple orchard. Three nice restrooms: 1) near the BBQ/Store, 2) at the start of the Nature Trail before you go uphill to the Apple Stand, and 3) at the end of the Nature Trail in Oak Knoll Park.
• You can buy food there, but just be prepared for the lines to get long after about 11:00am. If we did it again, I might buy food earlier and store it in my car/cooler. Or just bring a big picnic lunch to enjoy down in the park or on the expansive lawn.
Wednesday – Sunday only: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM