On my way from the Hell hole that is Tahoe to the heavenly heights of the Stanislaus National Forest, I stopped by two small destinations that popped up on an adventure blog. Each was fun, but left me thinking, “What if…”
The first was a middle of nowhere spot called Natural Bridges outside the tiny town of Kirkwood. There wasn’t much to note about the tiny town other than their apparent obsession with Mark Twain which was most likely due to his famous short story, “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County”, the county of which the tiny town resides.
Take a small trail down and and you’ll find yourself at a nice little watery oasis. A natural bridge has been formed and beneath is a cold, slightly creepy, and very interesting water tunnel that you can swim through if you possess the proper mental fortitude to handle the chill and the dark.
I had fun, but having gone on a weekend it was quite busy and it left me thinking, “What if I had come on a less busy weekday…?”
The second small stop was at another swimming hole, but of a very different style. The Potholes, as they’re called locally, are a collection of round water inlets in a small river that are fun for a dip. The only trouble is finding the damn place. The directions I was given online were about as useful as a toothpick is for fighting a bear. The locals weren’t much help either (though they all had heard of it) and the campground which you’re required to walk through to get there does everything it can to make that difficult.
Finally after arriving around sunset, I took a dip and explored the area a bit. Right next to the river was a perfect place to set up tents and camp out with the sound of rushing water, fire pits in the sand, and a perfect view of the sunset. Unfortunately, I had to get moving on to my next destination, but it left me thinking, “What if I stayed here for the night…?”