After leaving Arcata, we take Highway 299. We enter a large mountainous area called the Trinity Alps. It’s one of the hearts of the gold rush in the 1850s and to this day, there are still a few prospectors trying to find the gold. There are very few roads that take you inside the Alps, so you can just stay right at the limits and then hike in. Our first stop is near the town of Willow Creek where we find a beautiful beach next to the Trinity River. The weather is very hot, well above 40 celcius, so taking a swim is such a relief.


After one night in Willow Creek, we continue along 299 and reach the town of Weaverville where we camp for 2 nights. This town served as a base for the gold miners and there are lots of traces of its turbulant past. You feel like you are truly stepping into the past.

We visit the town museum where we could see real cabins from the 19th century with artifacts.
DSCF8828.jpgDSCF8826.jpgDSCF8825.jpgThe museum also has a collection of old Ore refiners that can apply compression to separate the precious minerals (including gold) out of the rest of dirt.DSCF8827.jpg

There is also a very interesting Taoist temple called the Joss House.
DSCF8847.jpgDSCF8835.jpgDSCF8840.jpgDSCF8842.jpgDSCF8866.jpgAs the weather is so hot, we look and find lots of very nice swimming spots along the river. We find one where are the locals go and there is even a rope from which you can jump into the river.
DSCF8885.jpgDSCF8859.jpgWe come accross a little ghost town called “Old Helena” with buildings crumbling apart.
DSCF8886.jpgDSCF8888.jpgDSCF8893.jpgOn our final day in the area, we go for a hike to the Canyon Creek which takes you to a series of lakes. The lakes are a bit too far away for a day hike, but we reach some beautiful waterfalls.

We enjoyed the Trinity Alps a lot and hope to return soon! Next stop on our trip, the Mount Shasta…