“I may not have a lot of money, but I’m happy and free,” says Mike Mateus, who has been a horseshoer and taking pack trips for Los Padres Wilderness Outfitters in Santa Barbara, California, since 2005.
This new short film by YETI coolers, “Los Padres,” is a touching story and tribute to the cowboy spirit and captures the essence of happiness and freedom of riding horses in the open country.
“Following the last command,” Graham Goodfield continues the legacy of Los Padres Wilderness Outfitters founder Tony Alvis. Alvis is described as being a colorful guy with a huge personality, one too large to be contained by mundane city life. He had a great love for the backcountry and started Los Padres in the late ‘60s. Alvis shared his love of wildlife and the outdoors by taking people on packing trips.
Goodfield recalls that while Alvis was clearing a Quonset hut, he was tragically killed in 2005 when heavy rain triggered a massive mudslide in La Conchita, California. Goodfield says he “grabbed his dog and just started taking care of the horses.”
“Graham had it in his blood,” says Mateus. “He was going to be a cowboy.” Goodfield is a sixth generation Santa Barbaran, who began with Los Padres because he had a love of horses and the mountains and wanted to find a way to make it his living. He came under the tutelage of Alvis, and it was natural that he inherited it.
Rich in cowboy spirit and for the love of the outdoors, the purpose of Los Padres “is to get packed into the mountains and give people an opportunity to see what they otherwise wouldn’t get to see.” Often referred to as life-changing trips, Los Padres offers private rides for groups of family and friends, horseback rides on the beach, wine and cheese rides and rides for large groups. For Graham, Los Padres Outfitters opens people up to the rich history of the California backcountry and shows them what the outdoors really has to offer.