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Posted September 2006

Murphys: Explore a Historic Gold Country Town

Fall – in Love with Wine Country

(MURPHYS, CA) – The spectacular Sierra foothills holds lots of treasures. There are multitudinous activities for the outdoor lover – hiking, biking, golfing, hunting, winter snow sports, exploring groves of giant sequoias, picnics and peaceful drives through changing elevations and sceneries.

Fall is especially beautiful in the California foothills. Fields turn golden, and vineyards blaze from deep, dusty greens to oranges, reds, and browns, and the pine glades harbor cool fall breezes that offer a bouquet of smells for noses that are tired of the city’s exhaust.

Little Murphys in Calaveras County celebrates its environment and offers travelers a glimpse of the exciting origins of gold fever and the way of life it spawned. Still extant upon its streets are more than a dozen stone buildings from the mid-1800’s and were either built with money mined from the area’s claims, or built to capitalize upon that wealth.

Now they house art galleries, unique retail stores, salons, spas, and wine tasting rooms. September still finds many flowers in bloom around the doorways of the shops, and with the warmth of the air you will find it a difficult decision to browse amongst the art, or find a nice café to enjoy a drink or a bite al fresco.

You will find the Crazy Woman Trading Co. down a side street. Just look for the painted feet running down the alley and to their door. There are alabaster statuary and handmade furniture, as well as Scottish gifts and handmade yarn garments, among the many unique stores.

Sac á Main is a beautiful handbag store that carries bags from San Francisco, New York, and Las Vegas. The evening bag selection is diverse and brand names for the handbag selection range from Birken, Kathy Van Zeeland, to Tignello, Latico, and Laurel Birch.

The experience is a lovely getaway for couples looking for time together, and has a delightful romantic air. Families are very welcome, however, and the streets are safe for wandering children.

If you go, the easiest route from the Sacramento area is down Highway 99 or I-5 to Highway 12, to Highway 49 to Highway 4. From the Bay Area, jump on Highway 4 off of Highway 99 or I-5 north of Stockton. For 24-hour visitor information, contact the Murphys Business Association at (800) 225-3764, or visit:

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