The Soul of the Gold Rush

The Angels Camp Museum is no ordinary small town historical collection, a fact apparent from my first step inside. A fantastically curated exhibit on Mark Twain, the region’s most famous resident, gives way to a hall full of old cars and carriages, which in turn leads to a replica of an old medical office (complete…

Yosemite South

Yosemite, land of rock and water, of towering trees and grassy meadows, of deep valleys and their surrounding mountains. It is my happy place. Unfortunately, it is also the happy place for millions of other visitors each year, who clamor to the California icon to hike, camp, and ooh and aah at the breathtaking scenery.…

The Miwok and the Mono

Visitors to Oakhurst, California, just outside the south entrance of Yosemite, find a town of 15,000 or so ready to cater to tourists and the lovers of the outdoors. Hotels, restaurants, shops, and supply stores line the streets, all frequented by people eager to see the area. In 1849, at the start of California’s gold…

The Amistad Borderlands

Editor’s note: the US national parks system is truly diverse, ranging from awe-inspiring beauty to a more subtle wonder, like in this view of Amistad National Recreation Area by Christian, our resident national parks expert. For more of his experiences, click here to visit his index page. The Amistad National Recreation Area lies along the…