Louise Speaks; Earlier I had blogged about the Picacho Peak State Park. Well just a few miles from Picacho Peak State Park is the Rooster Cogburn Ostrich Ranch. This is absolutely a must stop if you are ever driving from Phoenix to Tucson or on the I-10 FWY.
The Ranch is a three generation family owned working ranch. This ranch has been featured on many TV shows like Larry the Cable Guy, Chef vs City, Amazing Animals, Only in America and many many more. The Ranch has been open to the public since 1999 when there were just ostriches to feed. Now there are plenty of other animals and critters to feed. Along with the ostriches there are miniature donkeys, dwarf goats, fallow deer, peking ducks and my favorite the rainbow lorikeets…I want one of them. You get cups of food and you just walk around the ranch and feed the animals. The animals are in pens, but they know you have food so they come right up to you. When they say ostriches bite so hold your hand out completely flat…they’re right, I have the bite mark to prove it. The goats however are so friendly that if you put the food in your mouth they will gently come and take it from between your lips to make it look like you and the goat are kissing. Thelma did this but it took several tries to get this photo op.
In addition to walking around the ranch and feeding and visiting with all the critters; they have Monster Truck Tours. The truck is bigger than huge. What was most enjoyable about the tour is the information that was given. The tour guide told us about desert life and some interesting facts about cactus and rattle snakes. I’ve lived in Arizona for over 50 years and still learned some interesting facts. As part of the tour they take you ostrich fishing. You put food on a pole and the ostriches come follow the line and grab the food right off the pole. At the end of the tour as you are heading back to the ranch there are desert fields with mud puddles from the recent rains or from watering some of the desert wild life. Our tour guide asks if we want to go on a real adventure. Of course we all say yes. She revs up the engine and takes off at full speed going down a small hill and right into the mud. Of course water and mud splash everywhere, but because we are so far up, we don’t get wet and dirty but the truck sure did. The real adventure was going down that hill and then back up the other side at a fast speed…this was as much fun as an amusement park ride.
This was a fun way to spend the day. The truck tour and the feeding takes only a couple hours but it was interesting, educational and truly was an adventure. There is a gift shop on site and if you want to stay longer you can buy more food and just keep feeding the animals. Like I said earlier, if you have not been here, you have to go visit. It’s right on the I-10 Fwy but its only open on the weekends, so plan accordingly.