Downieville, California on Hwy 49 – A Most Unusual Historic Landmark – Road Trip Day 10 Ep.26

Lex sez:

Driving along Highway 49 was definitely one of the highlights of our road trip.  I loved riding with the window down to breathe the fresh mountain air and listen to the Yuba River crashing by!  One destination that Neek, Sar and I really wanted to check out along this stretch of road was Downieville, which has a very interesting history.

Named after Major William Downie who, along with a group of other miners, made camp here in their search for gold in 1849, Downieville was an important “49er” gold rush town in California.  By 1851, the population rose to a peak of 5,000 people living in what was then called “The Forks”, named because two rivers converged there.  With a population according to Wikipedia of 282, it is considered one of the least changed gold rush towns in California, and driving into it, we could see its rustic past still living! Continue reading


A Living Ghost Town – Austin, Nevada – Road Trip Day 8 Ep.18

Lex sez:

Driving along the expansive landscape of Highway 50, it’s hard not to imagine what it must have been like to be riding along the Pony Express over 150 years ago through the same desert terrain.  Fittingly, the legend of the next stop we visited, Austin, is that the town arose in 1862 when a Pony Express horse kicked over a rock that opened up to a cavern full of silver.  The Pony Express agent riding that horse, William Talcott, made the discovery that within one year made Austin the seat of Lander County and in two years grew the population of the town to 7,500.  Neek, Sar and I were curious to see this old mining town that at one point was the second largest city in Nevada.

Austin’s history is filled with unique memorable characters.  There was Reuel Colt Gridley, who operated the general store built in 1863, which was restored in 1984 and is now on the National Register of Historic Places.  Continue reading

Road Trip Utah to Wyoming – Day 2 Ep.2

Lex sez:

Neek, Sar and I woke up early in our hotel room in Midvale, Utah. It was 5:30am and I felt groggy after the long journey the day before, and strangely hungry. Fortunately the hotel breakfast room opened at 6am and they had waffles, which all three of us loved. We packed the car, checked out, and hit the open road again!

Driving on the Interstate 80 heading east, we drove through Park City, Utah. As we passed through, we were surprised to see hot air balloons flying over the former site of the 2002 Winter Olympics. Continue reading