October 17, 2011

it was a GREAT vacation - glad to be back

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Dateline:  October 3, 2012
I got up early and braved the freeway as far as Auburn where I was able to explore the less traveled parts of California--navigating the ups-and-downs and round-and-arounds of historic Highway49.

I was on a quest for gold--I expected I might find some at Sutter's Mill at Coloma, where gold was first discovered on January 24, 1848.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

In the fall of 1847, James W. Marshall began constructin of a sawmill for John Sutter on the South Fork of the American River. Marshall found gold in the mill's tailrace, and by that simple act, the course of a nation's history was changed.

The secret couldn't be kept, and before summr arrived, the area was filled with '48ers. Before the year was up the hills for dozens of miles around felt the tread of miner's boots and the ring of their picks. [source: "Gold Rush Country", a Sunset Discovery Book, 1961]

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Reports circulated that nuggets could be plucked right out of the creek. And although I've never tried I bet there is some romance to be found in sloshing river-bottom sand around in a pan. I used to enjoy playing with mud.

On display at Coloma were several machines used in various mining processes. Steam power was popular but probably the most arduous task was just getting machinery and equipment into the area.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

This is the WESTERN side of the Sierra. Check back later and in a day or two we'll finally get to Bodie, California--the prize of my trip--a genuine gold-mining ghost town on the EASTERN side of the Sierra.

click photo for full-size image
photo by Donald Kinney

Oh yeah, it's going to be a long, long ride. Anybody need a haircut?

CLICK for the very "best" of my work on my "big" photo website.


CaliforniaDreamer said...

Welcome Back !!!

I tuned in to your site every morning while you were gone to browse and to visit other photo blogs you have posted on your site.

So glad to have you back sharing more beauty and observations :>)

Thanks for being here.

John @ Beans and I on the Loose said...

Bodie! I am looking forward to seeBodie through your eye and lens. I've not been there since the park service "developed' it, meaning setting up the kiosk booth at the road leading in and charging admission (I think). Welcome back. I am wondering if you got photos of Mono Lake and maybe went up to the bristlecone pines. I'll have to wait and see.

Hilda R.B said...

Great header. This was so lovely.
have a nice week to you.

AphotoAday said...

I'll explain that header tomorrow.
Great to be back -- actually the trip was a combination of long trips and short trips -- the weather sort of scooted me along, so SINBAD'S DAD -- I wasn't able to get to Bristlecone because of a snow (snow!) storm. Wasn't advisable to travel into Death Valley either, so I'm going to have to catch that on next year's adventure.

Civic Center said...

Your header photo today is f---ing awesome. Welcome back.

And the gold rush was an ecological disaster for the Sierra that we're still living with. See "Imperial San Francisco" by Gray Brechin.

Tomate Farcie said...

Welcome back!

photowannabe said...

Great signs and welcome back Don.
Your pictures just get better all the time, though I don't know how that can be.

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