Highway 88 Carson Pass

I’m researching a story that will be featured in the 2015 Volcano Telephone book.  This will be the story that accompanies the cover.  It’s all about Carson Pass.  I have found this subject to be fascinating!!  This drive was to look for some of the landmarks that I have been passing right by for years and never really looked at them.

This is Cook’s Station.  There used to be “Stations” every 5 miles, because that is the typical distance a cattle drive would travel in a day. Today you can stop by Amador Station, Cook’s Station and Ham’s Station.

This is an old photo of Cook’s Station.IMG_0315

Another old photo of Cook’s Station.


And, this one is of Ham’s Station just up the road.IMG_0319

Another old photo of Ham’s Station.

IMG_0322Here we are, getting our “selfie” on!  With Silver Lake area in the background.


It’s so pretty up here.  Take a look!

A lot of work goes in to making a smoother ride.  This is just before Silver Lake.  I was talking to someone who has lived his whole life in Amador County and has been coming up to this area all those years too.  He said that the road was so curvy and narrow that it would take 3 hours to get to Silver Lake from Jackson!!  And, the road was closed every winter at Peddlers Hill, which was a ski area at one time by the way.  Apparently it had a rope tow.

This is a view just off the side of the highway.

IMG_0348This is a photo of Kirkwood valley long before the ski resort.IMG_0328
And this is Kirkwood Ski Resort now.IMG_0349

It was because of the development of Kirkwood Ski Resort that the highway was made in to a year round road in the 1970’s.

This next photo is of Caples Lake.  It’s frozen over for the winter.  This year (and last) has not brought enough snow to the mountains.  We need that snow so that it can melt all summer and fill our streams and rivers.  It’s gonna be a dry summer, for sure!IMG_0353

We also drove over to Sorenson’s.  They have a lot of books for sale, some that you really can’t find anywhere else.  Sorenson’s, Hope Valley and Red Lake were the final stopping point for wagon trains and travelers before approaching the steep part of the pass.  It was quite a feat going over with horses, wagons and cattle.  I can’t even imagine!  IMG_0354

One of the best parts of driving “up country” is the beautiful sunsets.  If you look closely, you can see Butte Mountain in the distance.IMG_0361 IMG_0395

I hope you enjoyed our drive up the mountain!

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