Little Dragon, Highway 49

Northern California Motorcycle Ride – Little Dragon – Hwy 49 (Mariposa, CA)

237 miles (5 hours, 27 minutes) https://goo.gl/maps/9N9NJ1MNNn82

Starbucks Coffee – 4311 Town Center Blvd #450, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

Hotel Jeffery & Magnolia Saloon – 5001 Main St, Coulterville, CA 95311

Greeley Hill Market – 6386 Greeley Hill Rd, Coulterville, CA 95311

Fremont’s Fort – 37.5705680, -120.1198920

Yesterday, Bob and I (and a couple riding buddies) headed south on Highway 49 to ride the Little Dragon, a 15-mile stretch of Hwy 49 between Coulterville, CA and Bear Valley, CA with fun twisties and wonderful views…a great day trip to start the Spring riding season!

The Little Dragon is California’s version of Tennesee’s and North Carolina’s famous Tail of the Dragon. The Tail of the Dragon is a popular destination for motorcycle riders and sports car enthusiasts worldwide and it consists of an 11-mile stretch of highway with a total of 318 turns. The Little Dragon is actually 5 miles longer than the Tail of the Dragon, but with only approximately 45 turns. Here is a photo of the Little Dragon that I took from the southernmost vantage point, Fremont’s Fort:

The Little Dragon (Hwy 49 from Coulterville, CA to Bear Valley, CA)

FREMONT’S FORT

General John C. Fremont, 1813-1890, a noted military man, explorer, topographer, senator & businessman, Fremont was also a miner. He settled in Mariposa County living just outside Bear Valley.

He operated the Josephine, Pine Tree & Princeton mines and other claims. In 1858, he returned from his travels to operate his mines and found many had been “jumped”. In taking them back, a feud developed with several groups, one being the “Hornitas League” which tried to seize one of his mines. After that incident, a fort was built to defend the “only” access to the mines. Afterward, his battles were in the courtroom.

Dedicated by
Matuca Chapter 1849
E Clampus Vitus
May 29, 1994 (5999)
Credo Quia Absurdum

Fremont's Fort at The Little Dragon (Hwy 49 from Coulterville, CA to Bear Valley, CA)

Before we fueled up and rode the Little Dragon, we stopped at the Magnolia Saloon at Hotel Jeffery, a popular lunch stop destination for motorcycle riders who come to ride the Little Dragon or for travelers heading to Yosemite National Park from the San Francisco Bay Area.

JEFFERY HOTEL

Built originally in the late 1840’s to serve the Mexican community as a Cantina and Fandango Hall. The succeeding Jeffery Hotel has been warmly praised in the memoirs of the 49er and travelers.

The hotel is among the oldest owned and operated by one family in the State of California. The current and third generation host is Edward Sackett, husband of the late Violet Thompson Sackett, daughter of Sarah Jeffery Thompson.

Matuca Chapter E Clampus Vitus
May 1973

Established in 1851, the Magnolia Saloon is California’s oldest operating saloon and even still has authentic pair of wooden saloon doors at the entry…and one of the best BBQ pulled pork sandwiches I’ve ever had! They also have a pool room and outdoor seating in a quaint courtyard setting. The Magnolia Saloon located at 5001 Main Street in Coulterville, CA is open Friday to Sunday from 11:00am to closing and Monday and Thursday from 1:00pm to closing. For more information about Hotel Jeffery and the Magnolia Saloon, please visit their website.

If you’re in Coulterville, CA and need to fuel up, the nearest gas station is 6 miles up the road in Greeley Hill. Main Street will take you up there and the Greeley Hill Market and Shell gas station will be on your right side.

Nevada City, Humpty Dumpty Kitchen

Northern California Motorcycle Ride – Nevada City – Humpty Dumpty Kitchen (Grass Valley, CA)

123 miles (3 hours) http://goo.gl/maps/xIWoH

The Purple Place Bar & Grill – 363 Green Valley Rd, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

Mine Shaft – 222 Broad St, Nevada City, CA 95959

Humpty Dumpty Kitchen – 1711 E. Main St, Grass Valley, CA 95945

The Purple Place Bar & Grill – 363 Green Valley Rd, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

V. Sattui Winery – St. Helena, CA

St. Helena, CA 94574 – V. Sattui Winery (Gamay Rouge)

V. Sattui has been one of my favorite wineries in the entire Napa Valley since I first visited them in 1993. It is a popular destination for anyone visiting the Napa Valley Wine Country.

V. Sattui Winery - St. Helena, CA
Established in 1885, V. Sattui Winery held their 125th Anniversary Celebration in 2010
V. Sattui Winery - St. Helena, CA

I love their Muscat, Riesling, Port and Madeira, but their Gamay Rouge is #1 on my list! It pairs wonderfully with my Rotisserie Chicken Salad with Grapes.

Rotisserie Chicken Salad with Grapes & V. Sattui Gamay Rouge
Homemade Rotisserie Chicken Salad with Grapes paired with V. Sattui Gamay Rouge.

Yes, it’s crowded…but it’s so worth it as a vital part of the Napa Valley wine tasting experience. I love the beautiful grounds and the shady areas around the picnic tables.

V. Sattui Winery - Picnic Area
Picnic area at V. Sattui Winery on a gorgeous late afternoon in February

I love the extensive cheese selection in their deli!

V. Sattui Winery - Deli
“I want more cheese, lots and lots of cheese!”

Despite the crowds, I will continue to visit V. Sattui whenever I need to stock up Gamay Rouge!

V. Sattui Winery - St. Helena
V. Sattui is the 2012 Winery of the Year and the Best Winery in the Bay Area

V. Sattui Winery
1111 White Lane
St. Helena, CA 94574
(707) 963-7774
vsattui.com

Apple Ridge Farms at Apple Hill

Camino, CA 95709 – Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20)

Apple Hill is an area in Camino and Placerville (El Dorado County) that consists of u-pick fruit orchards (many different varieties of apples, pears and more!), pumpkin patches, Christmas tree farms, bakeries, fruit stands, gift shopspetting zoos, a fishing lakewineries and even a brewery. Most businesses are open from September to December, but some (like all of the wineries) are open year round. Bob and I visited Apple Ridge Farms last weekend and took home one of their homemade frozen Dutch Apple Pies…which was absolutely the BEST apple pie we’ve ever had! 🙂

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20)

The Apple Ridge Farms Gift Shop is where you can buy fresh apples, frozen pies, apple cider, jams & jellies, fudge and more.

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20) Gift Shop

Long lines at the Apple Ridge Farms Bakery is very typical on the weekends, especially during the busy month of October.

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20) Bakery, Barbeque & Grill

Apple Ridge Farms is kid-friendly and dog-friendly, plus they also have farm animals that you can feed and even pet over the fence.

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20) Farm Animals

This lamb really liked nibbling on the tree stump…don’t know if he got any wood crumbs, but it was very cute to watch!

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20)

A nice variety of chickens in the chicken coop…I wonder if the different breeds lay different flavored eggs?

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20)

This was an absolutely ADORABLE little bunny rabbit that had all the “paparazzi” photographing away!

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20)

Oh yes, now that I’ve gotten off track with all the animal cuteness I experienced at Apple Ridge Farms, let’s get back to the main reason Bob and I would go back there…for their Dutch Apple Pie!

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20) Dutch Apple Pie

This is a slice of Apple Ridge Farms Dutch Apple Pie that we baked from frozen for 2 hours in a 375 degree oven…and it is truly the BEST apple pie we have ever tasted! (Note to self: go back to Apple Ridge Farms and stock up on a few pies before they close on November 12, 2012. After all, they won’t re-open until September 2013!)

Camino, CA 95709 - Apple Ridge Farms (Apple Hill Grower No. 20) Dutch Apple Pie

Apple Ridge Farms
1800 Larsen Drive
Camino, CA 95709
(530) 647-0613
appleridgepies.com

Apple Hill October 2012

Northern California Motorcycle Ride – Apple Hill (Camino, CA – Placerville, CA)

59.1 miles (1 hour, 30 minutes) http://goo.gl/maps/WqUZy

The Purple Place Bar & Grill – 363 Green Valley Rd, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

Mill View Ranch – 2740 Cable Rd, Camino, CA 95709

Apple Ridge Farms – 1800 Larsen Dr, Camino, CA 95709

Boa Vista Orchards – 2952 Carson Rd, Placerville, CA 95667

The Purple Place Bar & Grill – 363 Green Valley Rd, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762

Click here to read about our experience at Apple Ridge Farms

Bogle Vineyards – Clarksburg, CA

Clarksburg, CA 95612 – Bogle Vineyards (Petite Sirah Port)

Bogle Vineyards is tucked away “off the beaten path” in Clarksburg Wine Country, one of Sacramento’sbest kept secrets. Even though Bob and I love to go wine tasting all around Northern CaliforniaBogle Vineyards is a winery that ranks pretty high on our list and one we will definitely return to…for their fabulous Petite Sirah Port!

Clarksburg, CA 95612 - Bogle Vineyards

Bogle Vineyards Tasting Room is open Monday to Friday from 10:00am to 5:00pm and Saturday and Sunday from 11:00am to 5:00pm.

In addition to wine tasting, Bogle Vineyards also has a small deli section with an assortment of cheeses, oils, jams & jellies, chocolates and even their own line of Bogle Vineyards apparel.

Clarksburg, CA 95612 - Bogle Vineyards (Tasting Room)

Bogle Vineyards tasting room is located on the upper level, where you can sit out on the deck and enjoy views of the vineyards.

Clarksburg, CA 95612 - Bogle Vineyards

Bogle Vineyards has a wonderful picnic grounds area…lots of grass, shady areas from mature trees and beautiful vineyard views.

Clarksburg, CA 95612 - Bogle Vineyards (Picnic Area)

A classic truck at Bogle Vineyards…something pretty cool to look at.

Clarksburg, CA 95612 - Bogle Vineyards (Classic Truck)

The Petite Sirah Port from Bogle Vineyards was definitely well worth the trip to Sacramento County’s Clarksburg Wine Country, nestled between Elk Grove and the Sacramento Delta!

Clarksburg, CA 95612 - Bogle Vineyards (Petite Sirah Port)

Bogle Vineyards
37783 County Road 144
Clarksburg, CA 95612
(916) 744-1139
boglewinery.com