Now known for its gracious hospitality, golden history, and many outdoor splendors, as with many portions of Northern California, the lure of gold is what brought settlement to the area. Even before the gold rush of 1849, pirate Bill English and his rogue crew discovered gold on Trinity River near Big Bar and left the area with their purses full. It was the eventual discovery of gold in 1849 that brought thousands of miners to the area and the construction of such towns as Weaverville and Lewiston. Most of the county is forest land and some of the most beautiful scenery and natural lakes are found in the Trinity Alps Wilderness, so named because its snow-capped peaks are reminiscent of the Swiss Alps. The Trinity River, designated as a wild and scenic river, provides opportunities for kayaking, rafting, fishing, and swimming. Resorts in the Coffee Creek area, just north of Trinity Lake, offer horseback riding, cabins, and recreational activities.
Weaverville, located along Highway 299, provides a nostalgic step back in time. One of the most interesting portions of Weaverville’s history comes from the 1800’s, when as many Chinese men and women inhabited the region as did Euro-Americans; all of them searching for the abundant gold found nearby. In 1852 they established a Taoist place of worship, which burned in 1873. The new temple, Joss House in the state park of the same name, dedicated in April of 1875, has since been in continuous use as a place of worship.
Hayfork, reminiscent of a frontier village, is home to the nearby Natural Bridge, which is both historically interesting and an unusual natural phenomenon with strong links to the native Americans who once inhabited the area. Natural Bridge is a limestone arch thrown across a narrow ravine by nature. Lewiston offers history buffs great opportunities to explore, along with wonderful photographic opportunities including twenty of the town’s structures which are listed in the National Registry of Historic Places. If jagged peaks over 9,000 feet tall, saw tooth ridges, alpine meadows, deep glaciated canyons, and more than 50 mountain lakes and streams are what you’re looking for; the Trinity Alps Wilderness is waiting for you. This 500,000-acre wilderness area is the second largest in California and one of the largest in the United States.
Trinity Lake, the third largest lake in California, has 147 miles of shoreline and is uncrowded even during the summer peak months. The many secluded, tree-lined coves are perfect for anglers and houseboaters. Its crystal clear waters contain a variety of prize fish including trout, smallmouth bass, and King Salmon. Lewiston Lake offers boating, fishing, swimming and camping experiences, while marinas on Trinity Lake also rent houseboats and other types of watercraft. In Southern Trinity County, Ruth Lake offers similar boating and fishing opportunities. All this and more is perfect for a relaxing vacation of a lifetime or just a few days away.