My neighbor and his wife are avid hikers. They are probably in their seventies and have hiked in places I could only dream of — including the Swiss Alps and throughout parts of India and soon the Canadian Rockies. He always likes to share with me all the great local hikes that I should check out, and I gladly listen. He would tell me stories of how he used to be neighbors with George Lucas out by Skywalker Ranch, and how he and his wife would go on these long 13 mile hikes over in Lucas Valley.
A little while back, my friend and I finally decided to take a hike out in Lucas Valley. We both luckily brought our cameras, but unfortunately, did not get much of a workout as every few minutes, one of us (usually me), would stop and take a picture. We were also slightly distracted by our efforts to find Skywalker Ranch, a 4700 acre parcel of land that George Lucas bought for 100 million dollars in 1978, complete with its own Skywalker Ranch Ewok Lake. We only managed to spot Big Rock Ranch, a smaller Lucasfilm development next to it, but it was exciting enough nonetheless — having two Star Wars-crazed boys will do that to you.
These pictures don’t do the area justice — it was huge, and expansive, and simply beautiful. Now, after experiencing it myself, I understand why my neighbor would walk out there for 13 miles.