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  1. Default SFO to Reno area VIA Gold Country

    It's bucket list time! We are planning a short side trip after arriving at SFO to see some of the history of the Gold Rush. We would like to try panning for gold (not expecting much but the experience), seeing some mining town Rt 49 history etc. After that we want to continue to Reno. We will then head back to Napa area . We have 2 1/2- 3 days. We plan driving from Reno to Vacaville in one day on our return.
    Your advice if there are any 'must see' attractions? Any 'don't bother' places to aviod? How long should we stay on Rt 49?

    We like some history (interesting facts) museums, tours, self direction, wineries, scenery, most food, and saving money but not pinching pennies. This is the very early planning stage so we are flexible at this point and a lot is predicated on where we start.

    This is my first post here so easy does it!

    Arriving late so really don't want to drive more that 1 - 2 hrs to get close to Day 1 town.
    This is hard to decide which town to start at. We would like to have a fun experience panning for gold (although it seems like work) but also hear/see some of the history. Any recommondations here are appreciated greatly.

    Day 1 museum/tour. Pan for Gold. eat at unique spot. Maybe a town specialty or great resturant. (not crazy about fast food)

    Day 2 museum/tour side stop (or not) on way to Reno

    Day 3 quick visit to Reno then drive back to vaccaville area possible stop on way- Suggestions?

    Thanks to anybody who has done this or has ideas.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Southern California


    We took our children up to the Gold Country a number of years ago. All of us enjoyed poking around Sutter's Mill, the state park there, and sticking our feet in the American River. I don't see what month you're going, but if it's in August, look around for freshly picked peaches and blueberries at the local produce stands.

    A trip over to Calaveras State Park is also a lot of fun! (Think of Mark Twain's short story about the jumping frog of Calaveras County.)


  3. Default

    Perhaps we will start in Jamestown. I found an RV park that had big rock formations that looked amazing and although we are not camping this trip we may look around there. I don't know why but we like rocks! Still very early in our planning so our lodging will determine some of our choices. I have to start writing things down before I get too confused.
    RE: Calaveras - We are coming after the frog jumping but may get over there, thank you for the suggestions.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    South of England.

    Default Links.

    Hi, welcome to RTA.

    This site is a good guide for historic 49 towns and attractions. If you are in Jamestown you might want to visit Railtown also. I have not been here, but here is a link to Gold Panning outings near Jamestown. If you head out to Calaveras there is also the historic town of Murphys. You could possibly use scenic CA4 across the Sierras to get from Jamestown to Reno via Murphys and Calaveras.

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