Historic Jackson


Jackson, the country seat of Amador County, was founded in 1848 and like many towns in the Mother Lode, its growth was mostly fed by the gold rush. Jackson became important as it was a convinient spot between Sacramento and the southern mining towns, such as Sonora.

Jackson is also home to Kennedy Mine, which was opened in 1860 after hard rock mining became popular.

Dang truck, blocking my shot of the lovely new Jackson mural.

Amazing used bookstore, Hein and Company Used and Rare Books.

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Calaveras Big Trees Park


Admission: $10 per car

What is now known as Calaveras Big Trees State Park was originally found in the spring of 1852 by Augustus T. Dowd while he was on a hunting trip. Word of the magnificent grove quickly spread and just as quickly some of the amazing trees were felled and others stripped of bark.

In 1931 the North Grove was added to the newly created state parks system with the South Grove following in 1954. These days the park is open to hiking, camping and fishing.

The visitor’s center

Inside, with it’s nifty dioramas.

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Placerville Ghost Tour


Price: $10

Old Town Placerville, formerly known as Hangtown, has quite the history. One of the biggest towns during the gold rush, it certainly lived up to it’s Hangtown name, though probably only about 30 people were hanged in the town, as opposed to the rumored 300+. Those sentenced to get their necks stretched aren’t the only ghosts still hanging around and Gold Rush Tales will be happy to introduce you to them.

Operating tours of the downtown Placerville area every Saturday night at 7pm, the tour company will take you up and down the streets with incredibly well researched tales of over a dozen ghosts that are interesting, creepy, and sometimes even funny.

The tour guide comes with a very easily identifiable sign, which I always appreciate.

One of the old soda works buildings, built over a former mine. Former miner Charlie, a victorian era little girl and even ghost cats make appearances here.

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Gekkeikan Sake Folsom Brewer


Admission: Free

The Gekkeikan Sake Folsom Brewery has a history that reaches back all the way to 1637 and officially became Gekkeikan in 1905. The Folsom Brewery itself opened in 1989 and is open to (very small) self guided walking tours and a rather cute gift shop/tasting room.

Posters illustrating the sake-making process line the walls of the walking tour.

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Roseville Gem and Mineral Show


Roseville Gem and Mineral Show http://www.rockrollers.com/show.html Admission: $6 The Roseville Gem and Mineral show is an annual show at the Placer County Fairgrounds put on by the Roseville Rock Rollers Gem and Mineral Society. The show features all sorts of …


Ano Nuevo State Park


Ano Nuevo State Park http://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=523 Admission: $7 (for guided tours) and $10 for parking (per car) Ano Nuevo State Park is probably the best place in all of California (if not the world) to check out elephant seals in their …


Bok Kai Parade Marysville


Bok Kai Parade, Marysville https://www.bokkaiparade.com/ Originally built in 1850, the Bok Kai Temple currently stands at the corner of D and 1st Streets in Marysville. Bok Kai is a Chinese Water God and every year during the second month of …


Rio Vista


Rio Vista http://riovistacity.com/ The city of Rio Vista, CA is located on the Sacramento River in the Delta. Originally named Brazos del Rio and founded in 1858, the town moved to it’s current location in 1862 after a particularly nasty …


Sonora Celtic Faire


Sonora Celtic Faire http://www.sonoracelticfaire.com/ Admission: $28 The Sonora Celtic Faire is the oldest and largest Celtic Faire on the West Coast and celebrates the Celtic cultures of Scotland, Ireland and England. You can find all kind of shops, food, bands …


Monster Golf


Monster Golf http://www.monsterminigolf.com/fran-ca-rancho/ Round of golf: $8 Monster Golf is an indoor mini golf coarse with a horror theme and a whole lotta black lighting. Monster golf is a franchise company and I visited the Rancho Cordova location. Monster golf …