Sierra County in northern Gold Country retains much the same look and feel it had 150 years ago when prospectors swarmed in to work the rivers and mountains in search of gold.
The rivers still run free, and forests and meadows wrap their beauty around mountains that defy contemporary development. Bassetts, Forest and Alleghany, Downieville, Goodyears Bar, Sierra City, Loyalton, Sattley, Calpine and Sierraville are beautiful in all seasons.
has year-round recreation for every visitor, and scenery that sparkles with each new season. Shopping and dining can be enjoyed in historic settings. Amenities range from primitive campgrounds to lodging in comfortable historic buildings with modern conveniences, all surrounded by the rugged beauty of mountain forests, lakes, and rivers.
For all its wilderness and pristine beauty, Sierra County
is easily accessible year round. All major highways into the county are regularly maintained and plowed during periods of snowfall. These beautiful mountain highways wander through some of the finest winter recreation sites in California.
Caly & Amber at Lake Tahoe. Photo by Eve Dutton.
There are so many dog-friendly lodgings at Lake Tahoe that we can’t begin to inventory them all, but we can certainly point out a few favorites, as well as places to go and things to do with dogs in winter. Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing come to mind first, of course, but if you’re not a practitioner, no worries: in the past few years, miles of plowed walking/dog-walking/biking trails have made their debut around the lake. more »
Fun at the Sno-Park
Free parking can be hard to find when you’re looking for a place to romp ‘n’ roll in the snow with your pup. And while California’s 19 Sno-Parks aren’t quite free, they’re a bargain at $5 for a daily permit or $25 for a season pass. The program, operated by California State Parks in conjunction with other agencies, provides access to plowed parking areas in the snow zone where you can pause to ski, snowshoe, sled or just have a snowball fight. more »
Lakes Basin Recreation Area - Photo Credit: @cmalexander
Cabin resorts—some rustic, some luxurious—have been hosting High Sierra vacationers for a century, and many are so popular in summer they can only be booked in blocks of a week or more. Come September, however, reservations open up, minimum-stay requirements are reduced and opportunity beckons. We’re partial to those in the uncrowded Lakes Basin Recreation Area straddling Sierra and Plumas counties about 50 miles northwest of Truckee. more »
Photo Credit: @bernies_best
Historic Highway 49 in the north starts in the Sierra County town of Vinton and winds south through a mountainous region where the rivers still run free. Even during the summer high season, this county of fewer than 4,000 souls is off the beaten track for most visitors. In fall, it can feel like your own private realm. Set up basecamp in Downieville, a Gold-Rush town on the Yuba River, and prepare to be charmed. more »
Back in the “olden days,” families taking a summer vacation often stayed at rustic cabin resorts situated in the mountains near scenic lakes and streams. Many of these old-style places (along with a few new ones) survive in the Shasta Cascade, and many are so popular they can only be booked in blocks of a week or more in summertime. Come September, however, reservations open up, minimum-stay requirements are reduced and opportunity beckons. Here are six dog-friendly places—some rustic, others high end—that might be just right for a fall getaway. more »