Bob and Julie head South travel blog

HR and Phyl

Val and Julie

HR, Phyl, Julie, and Bob. Guess who has to work today and...

Nevada City. Many well preserved buildings from the Gold Rush days

My new favorite store in Nevada city

Time to stock up on our hand sanitizer supply

Lunch at Charle's in Grass Valley. Julie, Charle,Spence,Val, and Phyl

A view of another pretty 1849 mining town, Grass Valley

At the home of Spence and Val. Val has captured the interest...

Had dinner here. Yes, that is "the" Mel's Diner

This model of a Gee Bee R-1 was in Mel's, my kind...

Tours of Nevada City and Grass Valley, CA


The day got started at 11:00AM when Val, HR, and Phyl arrived in our campground. HR has to go into work so Val is taking Phyl, Julie and I for a tour of the old 1849 mining towns of Nevada City and Grass Valley. Val has lived in the area for years so she knows it well.

First stop was Nevada City, a town established during the 1849 California Gold Rush. The older part of town has many of the older buildings nicely preserved. There are historic plaques and mining artifacts everywhere and those cool little tourist shops, something for everyone.

After a walking tour of Nevada City, we visited the home of Charle, (Spence’s sister and longtime family friend) for lunch. Charle has a gorgeous home and makes an outstanding turkey soup. Spence was able to join us for lunch and afterwards took us on a tour of a very beautiful Victorian style house (built in the 1870s I think). Spence showed us the guts of this old house and explained all the work that goes into a restoration project, very interesting.

Val wasn’t done with us yet. We left Spence to his work and it was off to Grass Valley for another walking tour. Grass Valley is also an old mining town with a lot of character. We really enjoyed these tours.

We went to the home of Spence and Val (and Brizzy and Foosa the wonder hounds) in Grass Valley to take a break and “Skype” with Jinny and Wayne (Sister in VA and her husband). It was fun to actually see and talk to these guys, even if only via a computer screen.

After dark, Val took us up to Nevada City again to see the holiday lights in the old town. It was spectacular, even the old Victorian homes near town center participated. Val told us that they close the streets in the old town on Wednesday for an event called “Victorian Christmas." People dress in 1880s costumes and wander the streets. Wish we could stay to see that.

It was time for dinner, so Val took us to “the” Mel’s Diner made famous by the movie “American Graffiti." We enjoyed burgers and conversation while waiting for HR to join us. HR had car trouble on the freeway so we left Mel’s, got the Toyota pickup and followed Val right to where HR was in the pitch black (I'm glad Val knows these roads). The efficient and organized Val had already gotten a tow truck on the way so there was little for us to do other that turn on our hazards and wait. It didn’t take long for the wrecker to arrive and haul off the car. We parted company and went our separate ways. Val sure knows how to pack a lot of fun in a single day. Can hardly wait to see what she comes up with tomorrow.

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