I can definitely say my second sister is my real sister! Its not that our oldest sister is not our sister, is just that my second sister is adventurous as adventurous as me and sometimes even more. Every time Deelow comes home she will ask me to go somewhere and to explore. We’ve been through almost everywhere in our frontier home (frontier cause its literally in the middle of nowhere), so I researched further and found the California Caverns on the way to the Sierra Nevada.
Consider one of the earliest tourist attractions in the Sierra Nevada. Almost 1 hour and 30 minutes away from Stockton, California. When you exit Highway 99 to Jackson you will instantly feel the nostalgia of the past. Driving through the old inner highways which used to be their freeway during the olden times. You will passed by several mining towns, vineyards, and hills heading into the mountains.
California Caverns is remotely hidden from the main highway, so GPS is advisable. The site is located in Cave City which is mostly consists of a neighborhood with trees in both side of the road shading you. As you get closer the road becomes narrower and it will become almost a one way road. You will go downhill and then you will see an arrow pointing to the location and there you will see the welcome sign, “California Cavern at Cave City. California Historical Landmark No. 956.”
The fact that there is no historical buildings around Mountain Ranch and around the cavern is during the Butte Fire of 2015. The fire destroyed several historic buildings that served as mute witness during the heydays of the mining town. It was the most hardest hit by the blaze.
Upon reaching the site there will be an office building right in front of the parking lot where they have the souvenir store and the admission to the Cavern. $17.50 per adult while $9.50 for children under 13. They also have military discount. For more information about the time and dates, here is the link for their official site. “http://caverntours.com/directions-hours/ “
Within their site we get a view of the history of the cavern.
“In 1849 or 1850, Captain Joseph Taylor was target shooting on a rocky outcropping and noticed that his targets were being moved by a breeze which seemed to emanate from the rocks. When he investigated this curious phenomenon, he discovered the entrance to a cave which he named Mammoth Cave.”
“For 150 years, visitors have enjoyed the unique delicate beauty of the cavern’s crystalline formations. Some speleothems, such as the beaded helictites found in the Middle Earth area are very rare. Others are so numerous as to be spectacular, such as the “Jungle Room’s” array of stalactites.Soon after it’s discovery, enterprising miners opened the cave for public tours, making it the first show cave in the state of California.”
” Early visitors included Bret Harte, Mark Twain and John Muir who wrote about his visit in “Chapter 15 – In the Sierra Foot-Hills” of his 1894 book “The Mountains of California” when it was called Cave City Cave.“
The tour guide is very informative and you can see yourself going back in time as you listen to his narration. Opening during the beginnings of the Gold Rush is its considered one of the earliest officially recorded caves in California. California Caverns also claims its distinction of having the most extensive system of cavern and passageways. The tour guide will show you an area where people used to their “barn dances” inside the cave while a long rock will serve as the counter where the bar tender sells the drinks.
There are some sights that we didn’t went through during the tour for the fact that it was flooded. I guess during the rainy season some areas tend to flood and it won’t subsided till late June. The tour will You will come out on the other side, where you got your helmets and flashlights, and you are free to roam the area or go back to the souvenir store to buy some memorabilia.
On the way back to San Andreas we saw this historical marker commemorating a stage coach robbery in 1892.
“At this place, April 30th 1892, without warning a lone bandit fired two charges of buckshot into the stage carrying the payroll for the Sheepranch Mine, Miss Johanna Redesino, a passenger, was instantly killed. Babe Raggio, driver, was severely wounded, Mike Tovey, messenger was slightly wounded. Miss Agnes Filippini and Mrs. A. Lloyd, passengers were unhurt. No treasure was taken and the bandit was never apprehended.”