Lazy 5 Ranch – Mooresville

Lazy 5 Ranch is a privately owned ranch located about an hours drive from Charlotte. The ranch initially started as one man’s interest to raise exotic animals, but seeing the interest it has now turned into a ranch where everyone especially the kids can get up and close with the animals. Being close to Charlotte meant we could visit it and come back in a few hours. Read on for the experience.

Date: 5th April 2014
Weather: Bright and Sunny
Location: Lazy 5 Ranch, Mooresville, NC
Distance: ~60kms from Charlotte
Rates/Fees: $11 (Adult), $16 (Wagon Ride)

We started for the ranch around afternoon and after a hour and a half long drive we reached the ranch around 2pm. The scenery on either side of the road as we entered Mooresville was just beautiful and reminded us of the old time village. At the entry point we had two options either take the wagon ride or take the car inside the ranch. The next available slot for wagon ride was sometime around 4:30pm so we decided to go around the ranch in the car itself.

Lazy 5 Ranch - Wagon Ride

For those reading I had hopped on to the trip without knowing anything about the place, something which I am used to now if you have read my earlier travel posts. So based on what I had heard I was expecting more of a zoo kind of environment but what totally struck me was the way it was laid out. We were seated in a car driving around a 5.5km ranch with animals walking around freely and coming up to the car windows and we could feed them freely without any worry (the animal feed was provided to us at the entry point). It took me sometime to let the fact creep in as for a person like me who has always visited zoos or national parks in India where either the animal would be in cage or I would be in a caged vehicle, this was a totally different experience.

Lazy 5 Ranch - Feeding the Animals from the car

As we moved around and feed the animal, we noticed that all the animals were ID tagged and were quite friendly. They softly took the feed provided in our hands and waited for more and moved on if we did not offer more (we had only one box of feed).

Lazy 5 Ranch - ID Tagged Animals

We came across a lots of birds and animals, some of the ones we came across are:

  • Ostrich
  • Emu
  • Watusi
  • Bahama Cattle
  • Zebra
  • Himalayan Tahr
  • Nubian Goat
  • Deer
  • Giraffe
  • Rihno
  • Pigs
  • Llama
  • Camel

We came across the follow outside the driving areas but still inside the ranch:

  • Peacock
  • Macaw
  • Parrot
  • Pigeon
  • Donkey
  • Horse
  • Kangaroo

The ones mentioned above are the ones I could recollect, there were many species of the some animals.

Below are some of the photos from the trip:
Lazy 5 Ranch - Animals walking across

Lazy 5 Ranch -Bird Walking Across

Lazy 5 Ranch - Animals

Lazy 5 Ranch - Car in Front Feeding the Animals

Lazt 5 Ranch - Upclose with animals

Lazy 5 Ranch - Zebra

Lazy 5 Ranch - Animals Relaxing

Lazy 5 Ranch - Kangaroo

Overall, It was a very good experience. Must visit if you are in and around Charlotte. Kids will absolutely love it and it is very much how close one can get close to nature without stepping over it.

Note: As this is my first blog post in over 15 months I tried to keep it short and simple with minimal details so that I could get this post through rather than being lazy and not post at all :-)

VirtualBox – How to increase hard disk size of Linux guest

VirtualBoxEver since my desktop broke down six months ago, I was without a Linux machine. Lately the urge to get back to Linux kicked in and immediately setting up a VM came to my mind. I had already used VirtualBox earlier so I got started and installed Linux Mint. During the installation I had setup the HDD size to be 8GB and dynamic which could grow if required. Within a week as Dropbox and Thunderbird sync started the free space came to zero very quickly. So I set on to find a way to increase the HDD size where Windows XP is setup as the host and Linux Mint is setup as the guest OS.

The process to re-size an existing VirtualBox hard disk for a Linux Guest OS is as follows:

  1. Run the command vboxmanage as shown below, where “F:\VirtualBox\’ is the directory where the vdi file exists and ‘Mint 12.vdi’ is the name of the vdi file. The re-size option takes the final size (in MB) of the disk after resizing (below I have set it to 15GB).
    vboxmanage modifyhd "F:\VirtualBox\Mint 12.vdi" –-resize 15360

  2. Download GParted Live CD ISO from http://sourceforge.net/projects/gparted/
  3. Setup the ISO to load as a CD Drive in VirtualBox. (Goto Settings -> Storage -> Click on one the CD Drive -> Under Attributes click on the CD icon and select ‘Choose a Virtual CD/DVD Disk file’)

  4. Start the VM machine and let it boot into GParted screen.

  5. Once GParted is loaded, you should be able to see the unpartitioned size available along with the primary partition and the swap partition.

  6. It is not possible to move the swap partition to the end of the partition table directly and use the free space for the primary partition, hence follow the below steps one by one.

  7. Select the Extended partition which contains the swap partition and right click and choose ‘Resize/Move’.

  8. In the Popup window, note down the size of the partition.
    I had the primary partition as 6.75GB, Extended Partition which held the swap at 1.25 GB and the unallocated space stood at 7GB.

  9. Now drag the right edge of the partition to the very end, this would mean that the free space following would become zero. Click on ‘Resize/Move’ button and then click on Apply button.
    Step Result: The extended partition size increased from 1.25 to 8.25GB, with 7GB unallocated space moving inside the extended partition.

  10. Now select the swap partition and choose ‘Resize/Move’ option. Note the size of the partition. Drag the right edge of the partition to the end and then drag the left edge of the swap partition to bring it to the actual swap file size. Click on ‘Resize/Move’ and then Apply.
    Step Result: The swap partition moved to the end of the partition table and unallocated space of 7GB moved to the left of the swap partition.

  11. At this point, we are still unable to expand the primary partition to use up the free unallocated space, hence click on the extended partition again, choose ‘Resize / Move’, this time drag the left hand edge of the partition to be same size as the initally noted value, for me it was 1.25 GB. Click on Resize/Move button and then Apply.
    Step Result: The extended partition is now back to 1.25 GB and is again at the end of the partition table, with the unallocated space moving to the left of the extended partition.

  12. Click on the primary partition and now drag the right edge of the partition to use up the free space. Click on the Resize/Move button and then click on Apply.
    Step Result: The primary partition increased to 13.75GB and there is no unallocated space left.

Though I would have loved to include screenshots, I had already followed the process before writing this. In case you run into issue or have an easier way of doing this do let me know using the comments section below.