Take me to the river

As much as I love walking along the shores of Lake Natoma, it does make me rather sad to think of how the American River once flowed freely there, before the construction of Folsom Dam and Nimbus Dam. Like so many of our Northern California rivers and creeks, it was a prime spawning area for wild salmon; now we have […]

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Dave Moore Nature Area

I found the Dave Moore Nature Area almost by accident, as I was researching hiking trails in the area of Coloma. This quiet spot is just a short way up Highway 49 from the Marshall Gold Discovery SHP, and there’s no fee for parking or day use. This is a fun trail loop, not very demanding, that takes you down […]

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Marshall monument

It’s a steep climb up to (and then back down from) the James Marshall monument in Coloma, although there are a few different routes to choose from. If you’d rather not trek the full 3-mile dirt loop from Highway 49 to the top of the hill and back, you can take a car up the paved switchbacks of Marshall Park […]

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Marshall’s cabin

James Marshall really was one unlucky guy. All he wanted to do was work hard at his trade as a carpenter and millwright; but after he accidentally uncovered a small piece of gold in the American River his life was turned upside down. He no longer had the chance to work, and he never managed to profit from the historic […]

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Chinese stores

When I first visited the Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park as a young schoolkid, I was especially fascinated by the two small buildings known as the Chinese Stores. I think it was partly because these two small buildings are authentic structures from the 1850s, not replicas. I liked to imagine the Chinese miners going in and out of the […]

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