DogTrekkers in the know point their paws in fall toward the Apple Hill Growers region north of Highway 50 in El Dorado County near Placerville, where more than 50 member farms open their gates to the public for an applepalooza of festivities centered around the orb-shaped fruit. This year, there’s something new: the Apple Hill Hard Cider Trail, which makes its formal debut Sept. 15 with six producers showcasing their takes on the low-alcohol beverage that is taking America by storm.
All six properties are dog-friendly, so don’t hesitate to have your pup accompany you as you taste a variety of styles, from effervescent to still, hopped to fruit- and spice-infused, old-fashioned to experimental. You probably can’t visit all six in one day, so might as well make a night or two of it. There are several nearby options for the cottage-and-cabin crowd, all of which provide access to other attractions.
In Coloma, site of Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park, several family-friendly resorts along the American River accommodate river-rafters and other guests in dog-friendly cabins. Coloma Resort, with almost a mile of river frontage, invites DogTrekkers to “glamp it up” in its new South Fork cabins or in specified, motel-style “bunkhouse” rooms. On site, kids can pan for gold, go fishing or tubing in the river, rock climb and more.
On the luxury end, Eden Vale Inn, situated between Placerville and Coloma, isn’t a true cabin resort; it’s a romantic bed-and-breakfast property that, with its fenced-off decks, affords guests a great deal of privacy—and with it, the feeling of being in a private space. There’s plenty of room to spread out on this posh property encompassing several acres. Pet guests love walking around the gardens, swimming or going for a rowboat ride in the pond, and sitting by the fire pit.
On a more rustic note, Camp Nauvoo, about 4.5 miles out of Placerville, is a newcomer to the scene, welcoming pets at pitch-your-own tent sites, platform tents and furnished, safari-style “glamping tents” alongside a gorgeous Sierra stream. Hiking trails, evening campfire programs, sports courts, a kids’ playground and a cozy lodge with restrooms, showers and a common room with big fireplace are part of the scene.