Gold Country: Wikis

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Encyclopedia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Gold Country (also Mother Lode Country) is a region in the central-and-north-eastern part of California, United States. It is famed for the mineral deposits and gold mines which attracted waves of immigrants, known as the 49ers, during the 1849 California Gold Rush.

Contents

Geography

The Gold Country is generally considered to lie along the route of State Route 49, stretching from Mariposa County in the south, to Sierra County in the north.

It includes parts of twelve California counties: Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Mariposa, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Sierra, Tuolumne, Plumas and Yuba.

Geology

The Gold Country lies on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada, reaching down to the Sacramento Valley. The oldest geology can be found along the easternmost portions of this region, closer to the Sierra Nevada summits, and consists of ancient sea floor and portions of islands which were added onto the western edge of North America during the late Paleozoic, about 275 million years ago. The western sections of the Mother Lode are significantly younger, from the mid Mesozoic, about 150 million years ago and also consist of material that was accreted from the ocean floor to the continental edge. Massive intrusions of granite forced their way into these formations, and after ten miles of overlying material was eroded over the last seventy million years, these intrusions are visible throughout the Sierra Nevadas. Over the last fifty million years, rivers and volcanoes deposited materials which lay in thick layers that can be found atop many of the high ridges of the Sierra Nevada foothills.

Climate

For the most part, the climate in this part of California resembles that of much of Italy or Spain. Winters are cool and damp, averaging around 30 inches of rainfall and occasional snowfall, especially in the higher altitudes of the eastern reaches up the slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Winter temperatures range from the upper twenties to mid fifties. Summers are dry and hot, with long streches that reach triple digits. This region has very short periods of autumn and spring.

Principal cities and towns

Demographics

Culture and politics

Economy

References

External links

38°24′N 120°48′W / 38.4°N 120.8°W / 38.4; -120.8

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Gold Country (also Mother Lode Country) is a region in the central and northeastern part of California, United States. It is famed for the mineral deposits and gold mines that attracted waves of immigrants, known as the 49ers, during the 1849 California Gold Rush.

Contents

Geography

State Route 49 was built through the Gold Country, stretching from Mariposa County in the south, to Sierra County in the north.

It includes parts of twelve California counties: Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Mariposa, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Sierra, Tuolumne, Plumas and Yuba.

Geology

The Gold Country lies on the western slope of the Sierra Nevada, reaching down to the Sacramento Valley. The oldest geology can be found along the easternmost portions of this region, closer to the Sierra Nevada summits. It consists of ancient sea floor and portions of islands which were added onto the western edge of North America during the late Paleozoic, about 275 million years ago. The western sections of the Mother Lode are significantly younger, from the mid Mesozoic about 150 million years ago, and also consist of material that was accreted from the ocean floor to the continental edge. Massive intrusions of granite forced their way into these formations. After ten miles of overlying material was eroded over the last 70 million years, these intrusions became visible throughout the Sierra Nevadas. Over the last 50 million years, rivers and volcanoes deposited materials; these built up in thick layers found atop many of the high ridges of the Sierra Nevada foothills.

Climate

For the most part, the climate in this part of California resembles that of much of Italy or Spain, making wine grapes and vineyards one of the region's primary crops and industry. Over 100 wineries are found throughout the Gold Country. Winters are cool and damp, averaging around 30 inches of rainfall and occasional snowfall, especially in the higher altitudes of the eastern reaches up the slopes of the Sierra Nevada mountains. Winter temperatures range from the upper twenties to mid fifties. Summers are dry and hot, with long stretches that reach triple digits. This region has very short periods of autumn and spring.

Principal cities and towns

References

External links

38°24′N 120°48′W / 38.4°N 120.8°W / 38.4; -120.8


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Gold Country is a region of California that includes foothills of the western Sierra Nevada mountains and many historic towns that date to the 1849 California Gold Rush. Today highway 49 winds its way through small towns that protect the legacy of California's early settlers.

Understand

The California Gold Rush began in 1848 at Sutter's Mill (near Coloma) where the first gold nugget was discovered, touching off a massive influx of people seeking their fortune. This was arguably the largest migration of the human race in such a short time. While most of these prospectors failed in their efforts to gain riches (the ones who made the money were the shopkeepers), their legacy remains in the many towns that now cluster amongst the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains.

  • Whitewater Rafting. Rafting is the destination sport for the Coloma valley. The South Fork of the American River continues to be one of North America's premier (and most popular) river trips. Mother Lode River Center can help arrange rafting trips.

Stay safe

All should have a healthy respect for the changing conditions of a naturally flowing river. Watch children and yourself!!

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