Calaveras Sluice Box: Campouts, feathers and food: fun in the sun

If there’s one way to get outside and enjoy the great outdoors it’s on a camping trip. I know that camping is one of those activities that can be just as controversial among the family as who’s going to host the Thanksgiving feast, basically because everyone has a different definition of life in the campsite, but when Mother Nature beckons, […]

Calaveras Sluice Box: It’s a killer time in the county

Frogtown the place to be during fair weekendYes, it’s time for the Calaveras County Fair, but before I get to that four-day fiesta of family, farm animals and frogs, you’ve got to hear about the little theater that could.In West Point, Lumberjack Day finds throngs along Main Street for the humdinger of a parade that’s part of the daylong festivities […]

Colors pop at Amador garden tour

The Foothill Garden Club of the Mount Aukum area celebrates its 57th year of existence with dedicated gardeners and community involvement by hosting another fabulous garden tour of five diversified, unique gardens nestled in the foothills. The tour welcomes guests from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 30, and the gardens are spread through the Shenandoah Valley part […]

Calaveras Sluice Box: Get ’em while they’re lost

With grass stretching to make good use of short water supplies, it still looks a beautiful shade of spring out there and this weekend finds frolic in the foothills.Some shudder when they hear the word “hunt,” but I can assure you that right now, the hunters are merely preparing to search for their quarry; it’s Easter egg hunt season and […]

Calaveras Sluice Box: Blooms leave us green with envy

I alerted you last week to the daffodils at Ironstone Vineyards and can attest this week, since I stopped by for some photos of the flowers in bloom, that the blossoms are early this year. Hopefully there will be a fair share of them still shining bright on March 21 and 22 for the Mother Lode Daffodil Show.The granddaddy of […]

Growin’ in the Gold Country: When all else fails, follow directions

Some customers came into the store recently with mulberry leaves that looked like they took a carnival ride; you know, one that flips you upside down and spins you around. I immediately diagnosed it as herbicide damage, but the customers insisted that they had not sprayed it with anything. They had whacked the branches way back in winter and this […]

Calaveras Sluice Box: Ladies’ voices make spring shine

Traditions are the things that make the year fly by. From spring’s warming son and the first venture into the yard to pull weeds and prepare for blooms to the first dunk in the lake in summertime (hopefully we’ll get to dip a toe this year) to Halloween costumes and the hearty feasts of Thanksgiving and Christmas, yearly events mark […]

Calaveras Sluice Box: Springs wants us to share in the excitement

I’m having a little bit of trouble aligning the real-world calendar with the one that clicks in my head. Can the first day of spring really be just a couple of weeks away? That real calendar declares March 20 as the first day of the year’s next season, but since we’ve struggled to obtain much in the way of rainfall […]

Mother Lode Geology: Trenches and terranes mark the Lode

“The Melones fault is the Mother Lode,” John Kramer said in an interview.A lanky, veteran geologist with Condor Earth Technologies of Columbia, in Tuolumne County, Kramer specializes in hydrogeology. He lives in nearby Vallecito, once a thriving Gold Rush town in Calaveras County but now a quiet rural residential community.Kramer was describing a long-inactive earthquake fault zone that research has […]

Growin’ in the Gold Country: New plant is a must see

New plants seem to pop up every year these days, but every once in a while, something really grabs your attention. Digiplexis in not a disease or some new movie theater experience; it’s a brand new plant that’s must if you want vertical color in your garden.Digiplexis was created after six years of work by hybridizer Charles Valin of Thompson […]