Rural Beauty a Short Drive from Roseville
Tucked between California highways 70 and 99, just 20 miles or so west of Roseville, the Feather River slowly drifts through a seemingly different time and place.
The solitude began just off Fiddyment Road as we turned onto Sunset Boulevard West just around the corner from the non-stop bustle of Thunder Valley Casino.
In an instant, we were transported to rural America. An empty and narrow two-laned road invited us toward Sutter County as we paced our way through scenic farmland flowing with lush, green grasses and an overwhelming display of colorful wildflowers. Cows, barns and the occassional silo completed the postcard-perfect scene.
Best Views in South Placer County
After a short drive west, we pulled off to snap a few pictures and were greeted by a spectacular view looking back toward the east. All signs of a populated suburbia were gone as we gazed down this country lane with the majestic and snow-capped Sierra Nevada Mountain Range standing proudly in the background for our attention and admiration.
We continued our journey west into Sutter County and found ourselves heading north on Highway 99. We decided to check out Lake of the Woods State Wildlife Area which the California Department of Fish and Wildlife describes as “2,522 acres of dense riparian overstory of valley oaks and cottonwoods, with an understory of wild grape, pipevine, and California rose.” We didn’t spot a single sign or access points for Lake of the Woods, so we exited in the town Nicolaus( pop.211) made the first left and took us where the wind blew.
After a short distance, we found ourselves riding along the levee which offered an excellent vantage point of the Feather River to the right and farmland below us on the left. The banks were covered in grasses of gold and an abundance of lupine, (thanks Annette Seeber). A lone fisherman casting off the banks, seemed to bask in the solitude.
Further along, we began to notice several boaters along the Feather River and soon discovered the active Verona Marina and campground a short distance away. It was the only launch point we noted on our brief trip, so we logged it for possible future excursions on the Feather River.
Our short trip was just about over, so we followed the signs back toward Highway 99 North to retrace part of our trip. Keep your eyes open for nice views of the Sacramento skyline. It’s closer than you think. Before long, we were heading home toward Roseville while enjoying more great views of the farms, flowers and Sierras.
Scenic Trip Close to Home
This trip offers an excellent and inexpensive opportunity to explore the rural beauty of South Placer County and a portion of the Feather River by car without having to plan or pack. If you’re looking for a scenic, brief and slow-paced rural journey not far from home, head toward the Feather River, it’s a great choice.