Broken Rock Ranch makes for a great “home base” location as it is in close proximity to nearby recreational areas like Palomar Mountain, Palomar Observatory, Hellhole Canyon Preserve, Lake Wolhford, The Lavender Fields, Wilderness Gardens Preserve and Dixon Dam and Lake. There is a great deal of California history to observe in the immediate local area as well. Mission San Antonio de Pala is the only surviving Asistencia (a small scale mission with Divine service, however lacking a resident priest ) in the California mission system. Other great historic references include the historic Butterfield Overland Stage Line cut right through the area in its time, the Sickler Grist Mill est. in 1881 was the only mill in the region and its foundation still exists today, and in 1866 the largest California grizzly bear ever captured was found in Valley Center. Stop by the Valley Center History Museum just down the road from Broken Rock Ranch for all the interesting details .
Broken Rock Ranch is one of the best kept secrets of Valley Center, although it has been in existence since 1924. The interesting history of the property and of its various owners gives an added curiosity to the ranch as well. Originally called Happyland Sanatorium, the property was owned by a family whose matriarch was Caroline Beran Hoertig, a charismatic faith healer. Bringing fame and attention to her healings, the sanatorium was a noted landmark and can be found as such on vintage driving maps alongside known public buildings and parks. The property was bequeathed to the Lutheran Laymans League after her death in 1960 and was renamed Camp Caroline and operated as a church camp for the next 49 years.
In the 2000’s there were a couple of wildfires in the area. Legend has it that the property was surrounded by flames and the heat was so intense that a large boulder on the property near the perimeter actually cracked. The caretaker took a wooden cross and placed it in the crack of the large stone as a talisman for protection as he continued to try and protect the property by running the sprinkler system on the buildings.
Needless to say, all structures survived and the property was christened with the new moniker in 2009 when the property was bought by its current owners. Recalling on history about the property and location, those at Broken Rock Ranch state that the bunk house and lodge will take you back to yesteryear and provide the country feel of a true ranch. When asked about their property and what they hope to accomplish for their guests, managers Will and Kami Voertman shared, “Our goal is to be as warm, friendly and as helpful as possible to make your camping experience and/or event a success at Broken Rock Ranch”.
Call or email us today for more information and reservations.