1.9 out of 10


39.0165387033603 -122.060434631504
Great for
  • Cost of Living
  • Lack of Traffic
  • Parking
  • Peace & Quiet
  • Neighborly Spirit
Not great for
  • Gym & Fitness
  • Nightlife
  • Pest Free
  • Resale or Rental Value
  • Shopping Options
Who lives here?
  • No ratings yet


1/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 3/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 1/5
  • Peace & Quiet 5/5
  • Eating Out 2/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 3/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 2/5
  • Lack of Traffic 5/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 1/5
  • Public Transport 2/5
  • Medical Facilities 2/5
  • Schools 3/5
  • Childcare 2/5

"Where Gaskets Come to Blow Out"

Have you ever heard of a “one-horse town”? Well, Arbuckle is a one-horse town if there ever was one. My VW broke down on the interstate near Arbuckle and we ended up at the mechanic here. It was this German guy who specializes in German cars. Arbuckle was (and still is for all I know though it has been twenty years) in a perfect position for him. As it turns out Highway 5 hits a strong head wind in the summers at this point and the combination of the wind and the heat, apparently makes the chances of someone blowing a gasket and needing service very high. There were a good five cars waiting to be repaired when we got there, and a new one seemed to arrive every other day.

I was in high school then, and my friend who had enlisted in the marines was going to go away to boot camp soon, so we had decided to take a trip up the coast to see the Redwoods. We had taken a detour to check out Davis, where my wife would be going, and so we had ended up inland in the most unfortunate Bermuda triangle of automobiles.

We didn’t really have money to get a hotel for a week while we waited for the new gasket to come in and the car to get fixed, and even if we had, the mechanic said it was a bad idea to go to the local hotel. As he put it, “There is always a fire at the Arbuckle Hotel.” I’m not quite sure what he meant by that but it didn’t sound promising. The mechanic took pity on us and let us crash in the back of his van at nighttime. And so we spent our week of complete and total boredom.

We discovered that there really was nothing to do on a summer night in exciting downtown Arbuckle. During the day we sat around. We walked to public library one day and sat around reading really old, unused books. Another day we tried to walk to Williams, the next major town over. (Major because they had a mall.) Williams was 10 miles away though and it was hot. Luckily the local sheriff picked us up and gave us a ride. Also told us about the bus, which brought us back.

On Friday night, the last night we were there, we experienced Friday night in the Williams/Arbuckle area. Apparently the major weekend night pastime is cruising. The teens get in their cars and buzz the highway from Arbuckle to Williams and back. A couple of the girls stopped by to talk to us for a bit (my friend’s good lucks were always pulling girls in).

I passed through Arbuckle a few months ago on my way somewhere else and I drove through. It looks like they may have gotten one or two new businesses, but little else seems to have changed in twenty years. I imagine it is still pretty much the same as it has ever been.

So what is it like in Arbuckle? Less than 3,000 people live here and the vast majority make under $40K/year. This is an agricultural community, so its mostly about farming. It’ also a relatively poor community and unemployment here is twice the state average.

There’s not much to do here and, unless you are involved in agriculture, you will not have too many other opportunities. In addition everything is pretty flat and unappealing here. I would definitely not want to live here.
  • Affodable
  • Good Mechanic
  • Quiet
  • Poor
  • No Nightlife
  • Few Opportinites

Best Neighborhoods to Live In

Best Cities to Live In

Tell everyone what you love about your neighborhood!

Leave a Review

Have a question?

How are schools? Is the area safe? What about public transit options?" Why not ask our community of locals!

Ask Now

Selling or Renting Your Home?

Maximize the selling price of your home by sharing what you love about your suburb to increase its appeal...

Leave a Review

Corporate Relocation Manager?

Enable your employees to share local knowledge in a private, trusted environment with those relocating... while building community.

Learn More