Trinity Alps Wilderness and Weaverville, CA…a teaser preview

 

What I call the "Sphinx" lies at the north end of the Trinity Alps Wilderness area, just off Hwy. 3.

Trinity Lake, usually brimming with blue water, is down about 100 feet due to the drought; this is the north end where the Trinity River enters; showing old mining tailings usually hidden by water.
Weaverville’s downtown truly captures Gold Rush and small town spirit!

Just west of Redding about 40 miles is the quaint town of Weaverville, and just north, the Trinity River area and Trinity Alps Wilderness area.  It’s a land of beautiful scenery, rushing waters, Gold Rush history and a quiet way of life much unchanged from 100 years ago.

A side benefit is that so many other nearby attractions are just an hour or so away, including Sierra and Cascade  mountain range scenery, Shasta Dam and Lake, Mt. Shasta, Redding and more.  Just an hour further east is Lassen Park.  Toss in Gold Rush history and you have a destination worth a several day or week-long visit, just four hours north of Stockton.

On the way, Redding offers up the stunning Turtle Bay Exploration Park, complete with museum, art gallery, forest camp, wildlife exhibits, an amphitheater and the McConnell Arboretum and Gardens.  The park has something for young and old, explains the history, cultureand peoples of the Redding a rea.  And the world-renowned Sun Dial Bridge adds to the park’s luster! 

The bridge (celebrating its 10th anniversary in next two weeks through July 4), designed by Spanish architect and engineer Santiago Calatrava, is a technical and artistic wonder.  Linking both sides of the Sacramento River and the two halves of the park. It opened just ten years ago. The bridge is an actual 220 foot-tall sun dial, accurate at summer solstice.  The slender sun dial tower holds up this marvelous steel and glass suspension bridge with filigree cables, all designed to leave a light footprint spanning the river. 

Start your tour in the Weaverville area; it’s a cute Gold Rush town with lots of history and just south of the huge but drought-lowered Trinity Lake, the Trinity River and Trinity Alps Wilderness.  The town has a choice of eating places and hotels/motels, and the overall area is laced with private and public campgrounds!

What’s nearby the Weaverville/Trinity Alps area: Shasta Dam, Lake Shasta and Mt. Shasta to the north, Lassen Volcanic National Park to the east.  Redding is truly the Gateway to the Shasta area, northern Sierra and Cascade ranges and some of our state’s most beautiful scenery!  The area offers a wealth of campgrounds, motels, restaurants, Gold Rush history and quiet backroads.

How to get there: From Stockton, it’s about four hours/245 miles to Weaverville; go north on I-5, take Redding’s Hwy. 44 exit, then go west on Hwy. 299 to Weaverville.

What to see while there: The Sun Dial Bridge and the Turtle Bay Exploration Park in Redding, hiking and biking trails that fan out in three directions from Weaverville and the Trinity River!

What to take: Good walking shoes, bicycles if a cyclist, snacks, drinks, a good map or GPS unit and your camera!

For more info: For more insight into Redding’s attractions, go to www.visitredding.com, or call 530-225-4100/1-800-874-7562; for Turtle Bay Exploration Park and the Sun Dial Bridge, www.turtlebay.org, 800-887-8532 or 530-243-8850; for info on the walking/biking trail system, www.reddingtrails.com; for Shasta State Historic Park, www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=456; (530) 243-8194.

This Friday, watch for a full post on Redding, the Sun Dial Bridge and Turtle Bay Exploration Park.  For additional travel destination inspiration, see my blog: http://blogs.eSanJoaquin.com/valleytravel; to contact me, tviall@msn.com.  Happy travels in the west!

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