Jul 15, 2007

The Butte Store and more (PART 1)

There were several minor freakouts before Wild Dani, Legs and I settled into our weekend in and around Amador County. First we couldn't find a campsite...and despite my calm, no-let's-not-plan nature, I got a little nervous. When we finally found "Indian Grinding Rock" camp ground W.dani and Legs realized that we had no stove. Limp finger pointing ensued so I ran off to pee only to return to news that there was also no tent...and no coffee making stuff. 'OMG' you must be thinking...but everything turned out just fine. We slept outside both nights and I never even needed a sweatshirt. The second night however a giant animal ran through our camp. That was scary.

We hit Fiddletown (settled in 1849) in the morning after a brief stop in Volcano (1848). Volcano was a bit too cute for me, but has a lot of firsts including first library, first private law school and first theater.

Fiddletown, named for the 'fiddlin' around' that the people there did, had a giant dinosaur skeleton. Man this town is old.

After seeing a baby fox on the side of the road drag around too run-over legs I was very sad. Not even seeing the dramatic Kennedy Mine in Jackson helped. I am so sensitive.

Although the town of Butte has all but vanished, Butte Store was really cool. There has been some heavy reinforcements put in to help keep the walls from falling.

Near the Mokulemne River was a burned down appliance store. My theory was that this car crashed into it...the driver got out and lifted the hood to try and put the fire out...and poof, up in smoke went all of the shiny appliances. Charred refrigerators and ovens galore.

I really liked these spiny flowers

What trip is complete without almost stepping on a giant snake? Luckily this one was not a rattler. I also got a pretty good video of it that I'll post soon.

Campo Seco was another good find, although mostly off limits to help protect the endangered Valley Elderberry Longhorn Beetle. Three roofless stores, including the Adams Express Agency building, were all in a row with trees growing up from the ground. We didn't see the school which Varney has a great shot of.

Our evenings were similar to most camping evenings I've had this summer. A few beers and more than enough exploding marshmallows. I'll blog day 2 soon!


Madeline said...

"Grinding Rock" makes me think of a rock variation on lovers' lane, a place for people to go and make out but not go all the way.

Andy said...

Anything is possible, but I'm thinking the Miwok avoided using it for that because someone would invariably sprain his or her ankle in an acorn grinding hole (which were leg sized).

w.d. said...

Nice pictures. They make me feel like I was there! You should post about Varney's secret code.

markasaurus said...

maybe the "grinding hole" had a dual purpose and the rock was actually for solo lovers?

Andy said...

perhaps Markasaurus, perhaps.