Tuolumne is a quiet beautiful town surrounded by towering pines and oaks that once made this community a headquarters for the logging industry. Today it's a popular destination on the way to Pinecrest Lake or Yosemite National Park. Here's five things that must be experienced on any trip to Tuolumne.
Numerous rail lines used to run throughout the forest surrounding Tuolumne, ferrying lumber on its journey from the forest to the mills. The West Side Trail follows one of those lines on a beautiful hike that is open year round. If you can time it right, try to take the trail during the spring, when wildflowers erupt in a dazzling explosion of color. Also keep an eye out for the interpretive signage along the trail that ads some historical context to the scenic beauty.
Black Oak Casino Resort is a beautiful, state of the art entertainment center built by the Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk Indians. With a wealth of gaming options from budget to high stakes, plus a bowling alley, and epic video game arcade, the casino is a perfect spot for both grown-up getaways or a family stay. The hotel, RV park, and selection of dining options provide just about anything you would need for your next vacation.
You'll also want to explore to find spots like Covers Apple Ranch. The ranch has been an apple farm since the early 1900's, with many of the trees on site dating all the way back to 1929. The apples grown at this still very active ranch are made into mindblowingly delicious pies. While you'll want the dessert, their country-style breakfasts are not to be missed either. The "Fabulous French Toast" certainly lives up to the name.
The kids and grown-ups will also enjoy the petting zoo and miniature train ride through the apple orchards.
One of the best and most authentic ways to truly experience a community is to visit its farmers market. The Tuolumne Open Air Farmers Market gives you precisely that opportunity with evening concerts mixed in. The markets run every Wednesday from June through August. Not only will you find all sorts of fresh produce grown by local farmers, but you can discover art and gift items crafted from local artisans. While you browse the stalls, enjoy live music from the concerts in the park. You'll feel like a local before you know it.
In the last century and a half, Tuolumne has experienced a lot of history. Much of it is chronicled at the Tuolumne City Memorial Museum. From loggers to gold miners, many a family has come through here looking to make their fortunes. Learn about their struggles and triumphs, as well as the natural history of the beautiful area.
Pay your respects at the 9/11 Global War on Terrorism Memorial at the Tuolumne Veterans Memorial Hall and relax and enjoy a picnic in the adjacent park.