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Day 186 - Colfax & Antiques (Photo's Added)

We drove out Hwy 174 to Colfax to visit some haunts from the 1950's, splurged on some antiques, ice cream and Apple Annies

sunny 69 °F

Before we left the RV Campground at Nevada County Fairgrounds (in Grass Valley, CA - the name does confuse folks sometimes), Mom spotted a small Western Bluebird while I was getting the Propane filled. Since her camera is still MIA, she borrowed mine and got a pretty good shot of the little fellow.


My plan for today was to drive up Hwy 174 from Grass Valley to Colfax. Colfax is a very small town in eastern California right off of I-80. Grass Valley and Nevada City are two small towns about 25 miles north of I-80 along Hwy 49 - in the heart of CA's gold country. Hwy 174 makes a small triangle between GV and Colfax, about 14 miles long?

My parents lived in this area twice, the first time from 1955 to 1959 on Hwy 174, aka the Colfax Highway. Mom seemed to have a lot of memories of this area and I thought she might enjoy seeing some of her old haunts again. Sure enough, she was able to locate the house they'd lived in 50 years ago and it was still standing. They paid $9,000 for this in 1955, Mom say's this didn't have as many tree's around it then.


Mom also seemed to enjoy remembering various other sights along the drive, places they'd shopped or where friends had lived. A little farther up the road we crossed a bridge over the Bear River. Just before the bridge was a sign indicating there was a historic marker. We turned off to find that when they built the new bridge in the 1980's, they'd saved the old bridge also (citizen's initiative I think). Maybe the bridge had some sort of historic significance for others, but for Mom - it was something she remembered driving over in the 1950's.


The river is dammed up just above this, but still had a lot of water. This time of year the state is probably releasing water to make room for snow melt, but Mom doesn't remember the river ever being this full.


A little later, just before we got to Colfax, Mom spotted another place she remembered. This house actually used to be a Wimpy's hamburger restaurant in the 1950's. Mom and Dad actually took us there several times (Dad wasn't normally one to spring for dining out, even at a hamburger joint, so this would have been a major event for our family). They had a juke box where Mom liked to play 'Autumn Leaves' by Roger Williams (Mom & Dad were never into popular music, this is about as close as they came).


Just around the corner from the old Wimpy's (now somebody's home) is Colfax. I thought it would be fun to stop in at an Ice Cream store I remembered from a couple of years ago, but since it's the 'off' season, the Ice Cream store was still closed when we got there about noon. To kill a little time, we meandered on over to an Antique Store a couple of doors down.

Yes folks, it's probably better if I stay out of Antique stores! Probably doubled my already extensive collection of 45rpm records in one fell swoop. I kept offering about 1/2 the marked price on a few items, they kept accepting so I bought (a few things anyway. Maybe it's the off season, not sure why they'd sell for such lowball prices?) Don't cringe, but I also picked up an old accordian and have been having fun trying to figure out the buttons (hmm). Anyway, I wasn't really intending to buy a lot of antiques, but I figure at those prices I could probably sell the stuff again if I get short and not much risk of loosing money. Of course, figuring out a way to carry it all home in the RV may be a challenge.

By the time I finished loading up all the junk I'd bought at the antique store, it was almost time for the Ice Cream store to open, so Mom decided to sit and wait for a few minutes by 'Calamity Jane'. The weather has also been great - 69 F today and clear & sunny. Just outside the Ice Cream store were some planters - quite a surprise to see both Daffidols and Iris blooming so early, and both at the same time.


We finally had our ice cream and headed back down to Nevada City where I had made reservations at an RV campground. On the way we decided to stop at Apple Annies - a family owned restaurant where they grow their own apples as well as cook all kinds of good stuff. The garnish on our plates was a slice of Arkansas Black apple - never heard of it before but it was quite good. We also both ordered Apple Cider, but we were too full for dessert (having already had ice cream). So instead we bought an Apple Pie to take to my brother's house.


We had miscalculated the dates, both my brother and his wife work tomorrow so we decided there is no reason to try to get to their place tonight. I also wanted to visit Sutters Mill, so now we have time to do that before heading up to my brothers place.

We are staying in Harmony Ridge RV Campground tonight. It's the off season, so the swimming pool is quite cold - but the Hot Tub was warm and appeared to be working, so we indulged for awhile. Life is just rough - what can I say?



Miles Driven - 37 (RT), Cumulative - 17,917
Camped at Harmony Ridge RV Campground (ROD)

Provisions: Propane $11.21 for abt 3 gallons
Lunch at Apple Annies
Ice Cream in Colfax

Junk (7 boxes of 45 rpm records, early 1900's accordian, mantle clock, teapot)

Posted by jl98584 21:16 Archived in USA Tagged family_travel

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It sounds like you have seen a lot of really interesting places! I wanted to say thank you for the postcards that you sent me of the antique dolls and the horses riding off into the sunset! :) Its always so nice to recieve mail at school, so it was a lovely surprise! Enjoy the rest of your trip! ~Laura Johnston

by blackie15

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