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Power spots, spiritual touchstones, and roadside attractions in my personal paradise.
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Pacific Crest Trail, Sierra City, CA 96125, USA
Many's the time I've climbed these three sets of ladders to reach the fire lookout at the top of the Sierra Buttes, where the panorama from 8,591 feet, on a clear day, takes in the Shasta, Lassen, and Mt. Diablo peaks. The hike, which can be made...
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3901 Packer Lake Rd, Sierra City, CA 96125, USA

My wife, Robin, and I have been camping, fishing, and hiking in the Lakes Basin area, near Sierra City, since we met. These days, our usual home base is a tiny log cabin at the edge of Packer Lake, pictured here. From trailheads around Packer you...

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Sierra Buttes, California 96125, USA
One of the most spectacular views in the central high Sierra (about one hour's drive north of Truckee, CA) is surprisingly accessible. This wasn't always the case. The first time I saw these lakes--near to far, Young America, Upper Sardine, Lower...
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1329 Beckwourth Calpine Rd, Beckwourth, CA 96129, USA
On a gorgeous late-spring morning, on a tip from a Sierra Valley local, we drove down from Packer Lake to Sierra Valley Farms (near Beckwourth) for the farmers' market seasonal debut. Cherries, peaches, greens, baked goods from Longboard's, and...
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Northern California, CA, USA
As we pulled onto the Marble Lane Bridge, a steel trestle built by a Dayton, Ohio, company in 1908, we realized why John Muir Laws (author of Sierra Birds: A Hiker's Guide, and research associate at the California Academy of Sciences) cites this...
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3901 Packer Lake Rd, Sierra City, CA 96125, USA
The night before this photo was taken, we were in the warm outdoor pool at the Sierra Hot Springs [http://www.sierrahotsprings.org/] in Sierraville (about 30 minutes north of Truckee) when a light rain turned into a light snowfall. Back at Packer...