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Old Jun 27, 2014, 11:19 AM
Studying Engineer
MarcRacer18's Avatar
United States, CA, Santa Barbara
Joined Jun 2009
685 Posts
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Where to run boats in Santa Barbara, CA

I've been in and out of the hobby the last few years and I recently moved to the city of Santa Barbara. I was wondering if anyone knows of a good pond to run electric rc boats in the Santa Barbara area.

I've already checked out Lauro Canyon Reservoir (nice pond but surrounded by a large barbed wire fence), the city duck pond (way too small and teaming with dozens of ducks and turtles), and Cachuma Lake (normally a nice recreational lake but with the CA drought, kinda pitiful place to run for a 30+ min drive). The ocean is obviously a large body of water but I'd rather keep my models out a saline environment.

I have 2 working FE models and another prototype model which I hope to get working soon, no nitro or gas. All my searches are spammed with threads about the Santa Barbara sailing yacht, kinda hoping one of you could help.

Thanks!
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Old Jun 27, 2014, 06:21 PM
Old wreck in Milwaukee
Prins Willem's Avatar
United States, WI, West Allis
Joined May 2007
3,656 Posts
I was just looking at Google maps. It's a good way to scout an area. Take a look at a place called Goleta Beach County Park, by the airport. There is a creek on one side of the park and the ocean on the other. the Creek looks big enough to run FE boats in. I don't know how often Google updates satellite images so the creek may not be as high as what I'm seeing. Go to Google maps, find Santa Barbara Airport. The park is to the right(SE) of the end of runway 33R.

Call the Parks dept and see if they have any objections. Offer to give them a demonstration if they are not familiar with FE models. If it works out post it in the forum so others in that part of the world know.
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Old Jun 27, 2014, 06:23 PM
Registered User
United States, IN, Indianapolis
Joined Apr 2013
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I no longer live in the Cali area, But here where I am at google maps has yielded some nice results.
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Old Jul 01, 2014, 12:06 PM
Studying Engineer
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United States, CA, Santa Barbara
Joined Jun 2009
685 Posts
I checked out Rancho Goleta Mobile Home Park. They have a nice aerated pond with a walkway going over the middle. Big enough to run a Fast Electric but not for a long straight pass. There is a dingy tied to a gate on the side of the lake and the shoreline seems to be edged with concrete. Looks like a potential spot but I don't think they will allow me to run without knowing someone who lives there. Kinda seems like a retirement community.

The Goleta Beach County Park is very close to the ocean, I'll try later today to see if there's a better spot further upstream.

Laguna Blanca looks to be the biggest freshwater body besides Lauro Canyon and the street views make it look nice. Only thing is it's on a golf course. I'll see if I can find someone there to ask. My 45mph hydro is working, maybe a demonstration will help persuade them to let me run.

I'll keep you posted.
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Old Jul 01, 2014, 12:14 PM
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PDX, OR
Joined Dec 2002
10,133 Posts
Bring a leaf blower with you if you plan on demonstrating.
If someone brings up noise as an issue, then you can fire up
the leaf blower for comparison.

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Old Jul 09, 2014, 01:52 AM
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United States, CA, Santa Barbara
Joined Jun 2009
685 Posts
No luck, as of yet, on running a boat at the golf course. I still think that that location would be nice but having to wear slacks and a sports-coat just to run my rc's may be a little much.

After searching for a good spot all over the Goleta creek side I finally decided to get at least one run out of my boat at Pedro Creek. Kept it at 75% throttle to prevent it from flipping.

Vac-U-Pickle Run at San Pedro Creek, Goleta (4 min 26 sec)


A little salty and a good presence of kelp. After thoroughly cleaning my boat, I think I'll try somewhere more inland next time.

Next Place I want to try is Lake Los Carneros. It went past my radar on my earlier maps searches. Looks like it has potential.
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