State Highway 49 runs along the western slope of the Sierra Nevada, and is so named because it runs through what's known as the Gold Country. All along this road are towns that were, or are, a part of California's Gold Rush history. It's called Highway 49 for a reason, you know....
A friend of mine and I decided to take a little drive today. We went first through Placerville (Hangtown, as it was known in the Gold Rush days), county seat of El Dorado County, to Apple Hill--had to get some snackies. Then we drove to Coloma, site of James Marshall's gold discovery in the tailrace of Sutter's Mill in 1848--the event that started the Gold Rush of '49. I didn't take pictures of the recreated mill or of the buildings along the main street; instead, I took some pictures showing the bucolic nature of this former boom town.
The American River
Site of the original mill
What's left of a jail
After leaving Coloma we continued on Highway 49, driving through Pilot Hill and Cool (only in California!) and down to the bottom of the American River canyon, easily crossed by the highest bridge in the state.
Shortly we reached Auburn, the Placer County seat. The courthouse, completed in 1898, sits atop a rather steep hill, and even today is an imposing presence.
After that we came home. It was a nice way to spend a Saturday.