Parks and Recreation

Outdoor Recreation

Tuolumne County is known for its rich history, great outdoors, and strong communities. Many people who have been raised here in the foothills have chosen to return home as adults. This beautiful setting in the foothills of the Sierra Nevadas continues to draw locals and tourists to experience the many activities and see its history.

Our county contains numerous small towns that spread across the area. These towns hold fascinating history that accommodates us with various year-round outdoor activities, such as hiking, camping, fishing, biking and boating, just to name a few. In addition, our county also offers the opportunity to explore the time of the Gold Rush through a variety of activities in Columbia State Park, such as riding in stagecoaches, participating in candle making, mining for your own gold and recreating old photographs. Just down the road is historic downtown Sonora with its shopping, fine dining and historic buildings making for a picturesque day on the town.

These types of recreational activities provide Tuolumne residents with the ability to learn about their beloved town’s history. In Tuolumne, railroad tracks are symbolic of the town’s lumber and mining past and the local museum helps visitors dive into the history. Jamestown’s Railtown also sustains the memory of old times, which allows us to forget just for a moment that we have automobiles, all while enjoying the luxuries of a train ride.

While Tuolumne County enables tourists and residents to travel to the past, it also offers numerous beautiful outdoor environments that have become everyone’s backyard. In many places outdoor activities are limited to a few months out of the year, but in Tuolumne County we have the blessing of outdoor recreation available year-round.

You can start off your year by enjoying the snow covered mountains by skiing, snowboarding, sledding or snowshoeing at our local ski resort, Dodge Ridge, or on the many trails in the mountains. However, once the snow melts the fun is not over, as the many nearby rivers and lakes refill and allow spectacular fishing, boating, rafting and swimming. Take your pick of the 811 miles of rivers and streams in the Stanislaus National Forest for your water adventures. Whether you are riding the white water rapids of the Tuolumne River or vacationing on a boat in New Melones or Lake Tulloch, or a houseboat on Lake Don Pedro, there is fun for everyone.

From the numerous lakes to the beautiful forests of the Stanislaus, including Yosemite National Park, this county is blessed by a vast wilderness to adventure through as well as breathtaking wonders to see. There are seven different regions of hiking trails that together contain hundreds of trails for people to explore and venture. Some of these trails not only can be used for hiking but also for biking. Locals and tourists can bike through the diverse trails nearly all year long. You can also enjoy an unforgettable horseback trip into the stunning Emigrant Wilderness region where breathtaking views, crystal clear lakes and serenity awaits.

If you need a break from the wild outdoors come back down the hill and checkout Black Oak Casino Resort and its five star Seven Sisters Restaurant. For your sporting needs the casino offers 24 bowling lanes or you can enjoy one of the seven scenic golf courses in and around the county.

Tuolumne County is a unique place that offers fantastic opportunities and activities for its visitors and residents, who experience outdoor fun all year long as well as make memories that they can cherish forever. All of this makes Tuolumne County a great place to live and vacation.

Written by Caitlyn Rich


Arts and Entertainment

Not only is Tuolumne County known as an area with exceptional natural beauty and resources, it is also a well-known arts and cultural destination providing year-round theater, music, concerts, festivals, art galleries, cultural events and more. Many nationally and internationally recognized visual and performing artists call Tuolumne County home and the lively art scene contributes greatly to both our economic vitality and prosperity!

Venerable art organizations such as the Mother Lode Art Association have been representing artists in Tuolumne County for more than 62 years. At 47 years, the Tuolumne County Arts Alliance (TCAA) is the “mandated public art agency for Tuolumne County.” The InFocus Photography Show brings photographers from all over California to compete in this 30-year-old event. The Sonora Photo Club serves local photographers both beginners and experienced. Mother Lode Makers Lab and The Innovation Lab, both located in Sonora, serve the county arts & tech interests for youth and adults. Art classes, lectures, literary, poetry workshops, dancing and fitness classes are held at both the TCAA Art Studies Academy and Columbia College. Local artists, musicians and performers teach and help along-side many volunteers to run the Summer Arts Camp in Columbia annually in June and three other KASA KAMPS at the Barretta St. site during the summer. The popular KASA Dance and Fitness Studio at that location offers classes for youth and adults.

Throughout the county free, open-air music events at community parks in Twain Harte, Groveland, Tuolumne, Pinecrest and Columbia happen as summer fare! One can bring their picnic dinner, blanket or low-backed chairs and enjoy music and dancing under the stars! During the spring and fall, the Strawberry Music Festival brings thousands from around the world to hear folk and country music performed outdoors for a week in the High Sierra. The first of October brings Celebrate Art sponsored by TCAA, honoring California Arts Day and the month long national Arts & Humanities Month with different events throughout the county. A new, spectacular event called The HandMade Parade will be held the first weekend in October 2016 in nearby Jamestown. This new event will feature a combination of local residents, artists, students, schools and theater companies who will create a living, glowing, artful experience with handmade paper Mache works of art for this non-motorized annual parade.

Now in its 40th year, the Sonora Bach Festival members perform for three weeks in October at intimate concerts and solo performances, some held in local homes. During the winter, the St. James Concert Series brings orchestral and vocal performances to Sonora and Columbia. The Jazz Series rocks Columbia College Dogwood Forum with stellar performances of some of the jazz greats the likes of Barbara Morrison, Bobby McFerrin and many others. The Mother Lode Brass and Reed Band, Symphony of the Sierra, Community Choir performances for both spring and Christmas join high profile entertainers at the Black Oak Casino Resort to round out the wide range of musical fare in the county. A year-round event; Second Saturday Art Walk in Sonora features local musicians throughout the town and a new First Fridays Art-Walk-Wine-Dine event will take place from May to October.

Both the Historic Sonora Opera Hall and the Mother Lode Fairgrounds regularly offer cultural and entertainment opportunities throughout the year; such as the Celtic Festival in March; the Christmas Fair and Craft Show on Thanksgiving weekend; the Mother Lode Fair & Rodeo & Parade on Mother’s Day weekend, along with many dances, car shows, home & garden shows and art exhibitions, auctions and events in support of many of the county’s nonprofit organizations. Columbia’s Victorian Feast in December at The City Hotel is a peek back into another time celebrating the holidays as they used to be 164 years ago!

The U.S. Forest Service, through the Stanislaus National Forest Interpretive Association presents programs at their campgrounds and park venues. Their Artist in the Woods annual summer program for teaching week long workshops at Brightman Station is an annual popular event.

Tuolumne County Arts Alliance is the hub of the county for connecting artists and audiences. Soon, in the early summer of 2016, their new LPFM Radio Station – KAAD 103.5, devoted to arts & culture will be another voice added to their mission “to promote the arts and arts education in Tuolumne County, thereby enriching the lives of its residents and visitors.” Contact www.TuolumneArts.org or check out the Facebook page of the same name or call (209) 532-ARTS (2787) for more information on programs, classes and events.

Theaters

Sierra Repertory Theater (SRT) is the largest professional theater company in Tuolumne County, with two very distinct venues: its original location in East Sonora, a contemporary 202-seat theater located on Highway 108 that has been operating since 1980; and the 274 seat historic Fallon House, located in Columbia Historic State Park. Fallon House, built in the 1880s was refurbished in 1970 by the State of California. Both venues provide year-round seasons of award-winning, musicals, comedies and drama. SRT hires local performers, as well as Actors Equity Performers and professional set designers for their first rate, highly acclaimed productions. SRT has the sustained reputation of being the number one live theater in the region. For information visit www.SierraRep.org or call (209) 532-3120.

Stage 3 Theatre Co. in the heart of downtown Sonora offers an intimate theatre experience. The 85-seat, twenty-three year old community theatre brings new plays, long-time favorites, musical jam sessions, comedians, dance troupes, open mic nights, lecture series and more. A favorite of all the locals, we invite all of our visitors to come and enjoy a different experience. For additional information please visit www.Stage.org or call (209) 536-1778 for tickets and information.

Duende Drama & Literature, is a nonprofit traveling theater company whose mission is to bring plays and stories of historical content to our schools, parks, museums, theaters and libraries throughout California. Duende specializes in plays which showcase California history, as well as the history of science. Co-founder/playwright Rick Foster’s well-crafted dramas are enjoyed by adults and children alike. For information contact co-founder, Thomas F. Maguire at (209) 532-9177 or go to www.DuendeDrama.org.


Ciderworks and Wineries

Indigeny Reserve is one of our newest and successful ventures here in Tuolumne County. Indigeny Reserve is a lush 160-acre preserve and apple orchard set in the breathtaking hills of Sonora, CA. Indigeny makes hand-crafted hard cider and organic apple brandy in oak barrels. Indigeny is open to visitors seven days a week. Bring a picnic and have lunch surrounded by apple orchards. Indigeny is located at 14679 Summers Lane, Sonora, and their hours are Monday through Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Thursday through Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. They can be reached for more information at (209) 533-9463.

Wineries & Vineyards

Tuolumne County is in the southern portion of the Sierra Foothills viticulture region. Vineyards are found from 1,000 to 4,000 feet in elevation. Most commercial vineyards are planted in red varietals. However, some whites can be found.

The success of growing grapes in Tuolumne County is due to the similarities of soil and climate to that of Spain and Italy. The growing season consists of warm to hot daytime temperatures with cooling nights. The rocky and red soil challenges the vines to work hard to nurture precious fruit, and the production of high quality fruit for the making of premium wines that are winning awards in competitions statewide.

There are several commercial vineyards in Tuolumne County. They are as follows:

Hurst Ranch Reds
Highway 108, Jamestown

Zuni Vineyards
Yosemite Road, Sonora

La Bella Rosa Vineyards
Old Wards Ferry Road, Sonora

Gianelli Vineyards
Algerine Road, Sonora

Griffin Vineyards
Potato Ranch Road, Sonora

Oaks Family Vineyard
Avenida Del Sol, Sonora

Ponsanarosa Vineyard
Curtis Creek Ranch, Sonora

Rodefer Vineyards
Springfield Road, Columbia

Rossini Family Vineyards
Groveland

Yosemite Cellars
Punch Bowl Road, Groveland

Varietals include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Zinfandel, Syrah, Petite Syrah, Sangiovese, Grenache, Chardonnay, Vermentino and Tempranillo.

There are currently four tasting rooms in Tuolumne County.

Inner Sanctum Cellars has a tasting room and patio in downtown Jamestown, which is open during the summer as follows: Thursday: noon to 5 p.m., Friday and Saturday: noon to 7 p.m., Sunday: noon to 5 p.m., and holiday Mondays: noon to 5 p.m. Their winter hours are Friday and Saturday: noon to 7 p.m., Sunday: noon to 5 p.m., and holiday Mondays: noon to 5 p.m. Call (800) 750-5919 for more information.

Gianelli Vineyards has a tasting room in downtown Jamestown, which is open during the following hours: Monday through Thursday: 1 to 5 p.m., Friday: 1 to 6 p.m., Saturday: noon to 6 p.m., and Sunday: noon to 5 p.m. Call (209) 984-1500 for more information.

Hurst Ranch Reds has a tasting room on Highway 108 just outside of Jamestown, which is open Monday through Friday: 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Saturday: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Call (209) 984-3016 for more information.

La Bella Rosa Vineyard’s tasting room/gift boutique is located on 72 N. Washington Street in downtown Sonora and is open Thursday to Saturday: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call (209) 533-9968 for more information.


Business and Industry

Located in the golden foothills of Central California in the beautiful Sierra Nevada Mountains, Tuolumne County is a beautiful place to live and work with amenities to match almost anyone’s palate. Tuolumne County consists of small towns, historic gold mining settlements, scenic vistas, pristine emigrant wilderness, vast national forests and the world renowned Yosemite National Park.

Its wide open spaces, gorgeous views and incredible range of recreational opportunities such as skiing, snowboarding, boating, canoeing, hiking, fishing and strolling through historic destinations – have made it seem like a dream to many California residents. Tuolumne County is that perfect community where you can work where you play. If you are one of those who put in a hard day’s work but value access to healthy, active lifestyles then you have found your place.

The Tuolumne County Economic Development Authority (TCEDA) is currently attracting new manufacturers and technology firms to Tuolumne County, “where the outdoors meets your front door,” explained Larry Cope, CEO of TCEDA.

“Bringing your business to Tuolumne County can be very cost-effective due to the lower cost of living as compared to the larger, more coastal cities. In fact, many of the companies we attract have been priced out of the Los Angeles and Bay Areas. Locating in our smaller, mountain communities also allows employees to cut back on commuting times and spend more time on leisure and recreational pursuits with family and friends,” Cope said.

“For many years Bay Area retirees have flocked to Tuolumne County and continue to do so because they, too, want to enjoy its scenic beauty and wide range of activities,” he added.

Nearly eighty percent of the land is owned by federal government agencies in the form of National Parks and forests but we still have plenty of land for your business. According to Cope, the largest (non-governmental) industries are tourism, healthcare services, manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade and business services.

Many of the large employers take advantage of and make use of the area’s natural resources like its scenic beauty, minerals, grazing lands and forests. Those include resorts like Evergreen Lodge, the new Rush Creek Lodge and Black Oak Casino Resort. Forest and mining operations include Blue Mountain Minerals, Sierra Pacific Industries, American Wood Fibers and Pacific UltraPower. They also have numerous farms and ranches throughout the county with a strong “farm to table” connection with hotels, resorts and restaurants.

Other large employers cater to the needs of local and regional residents like the Sonora Regional Medical Center.

Still others develop and produce products for the entire world. Some of these are Sandvik Thermal Process, MMI Sonora, Kinematic Automation, Front Porch, UV Skinz, Micro-Tronics, KleenSlate and the Armstrong-Clark Company.

“Tuolumne County has a long history of attracting companies whose owners are individuals that want to be able to enjoy the outdoors and share that enjoyment with their employees. They want to be able to literally keep their backpack next to their desk and not have to deal with a long commute,” Cope explained.

For more information about locating a business in Tuolumne County, call (209) 989-4058 or visit www.tceda.net.


Education

Home to over 6,000 students who attend public schools

The County is served by eleven public school districts, including four public charter schools and three non-public schools. The Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools Office provides county-wide education leadership and support contributing to a strong instructional program for pre-K through high school, and through age 22 for eligible students with disabilities. Tuolumne County is home to Columbia College, offering associate’s degree and associate certificate programs for students as early as high school and post high school education. Furthermore, Sonora is home to the historic “Dome” built during the gold rush, where Sonora Elementary was housed for over a century.

The public schools in Tuolumne County provide a rigorous curriculum supporting the California State Standards for English language arts, mathematics, history/social science, science, and visual and performing arts in transitional kindergarten through high school. These standards are designed to support college and career readiness in order to prepare students for success in college and the workplace. Our county’s schools offer a wide range of opportunities for students to complete graduation requirements, college bound pathways, career bound pathways, music, theater arts, industrial and technical education, and athletics. Our area high schools have garnered championships in Academic Decathlon and many athletic division and State titles.

A variety of extracurricular activities complement each school district’s academic program such as athletics, student clubs, student government and leadership, career technical education, music, fine arts, performing arts, and career exploration. In addition to the curricular and extracurricular programs provided at each school site, students from all schools benefit from countywide special student events and competitions that further develop and reward student interests across the curriculum.

Columbia College is part of the California Community College system and offers a range of educational programs and services. The college’s primary goals are focused on helping students successfully transfer to a 4-year institution, complete a career technical education pathway, gain meaningful employment or earn academic awards such as certificates of achievement and associate’s degrees. For more information about Columbia College visit www.gocolumbia.edu.

Tuolumne County School Directory

Belleview School District
www.mybelleview.org
22736 Kuien Mill Rd.
Sonora, CA 95370-9551
(209) 586-5510

Big Oak Flat Groveland Unified School District
www.bofg.k12.ca.us
PO Box 1397
Groveland, CA 95321
(209) 962-5765

Columbia Union School District
www.cusd49.com
22540 Parrotts Ferry Rd.
Columbia, CA 95310-7709
(209) 532-0202

Columbia College
www.gocolumbia.ed
11600 Columbia College Dr.
Sonora, CA 95370
(209) 588-5100

Curtis Creek School District
www.curtiscreekschool.com
18755 Standard Rd.
Sonora, CA 95370
(209) 533-1083

Foothill Leadership Academy
www.foothillleadership.com
19401 Susan Way
Sonora, CA 95370
(209) 536-4330

Gold Rush Charter School
www.goldrushcs.org
14683 Mono Way
Sonora, CA 95370
(209) 532-9781

Jamestown School District
www.jamestown.k12.ca.us
18299 Fifth Ave.
Jamestown, CA 95327
(209) 984-4058

Sonora School District
www.ses.k12.ca.us
830 Greenley Rd.
Sonora, CA 95370-5293
(209) 532-5491

Sonora High School District
www.sonorahs.k12.ca.us
100 School St.
Sonora, CA 95370-5095
(209) 533-8510

Soulsbyville School District
www.soulsbyvilleschool.com
20300 Soulsbyville Rd.
Soulsbyville, CA 95372
(209) 532-1419

Summerville Elementary School District
www.sumel.k12.ca.us
18541 Carter St.
Tuolumne, CA 95379
(209) 928-4291

Summerville Union High School District
(& Connections Visual and Performing Arts Academy Charter School)
www.summbears.k12.ca.us
17555 Tuolumne Rd.
Tuolumne CA 95379
(209) 928-3498

Twain Harte School District
www.thsd.k12.ca.us
18955 Twain Harte Dr.
Twain Harte, CA 95383
(209) 586-3772

Tuolumne County Superintendent of Schools Office
www.tcsos.us
175 S. Fairview Ln.
Sonora, CA 95370
(209) 536-2017

Non-Public Schools

Mother Lode Adventist Jr. Academy
(209) 532-2855

Mother Lode Christian
(209) 928-4126

Sierra Waldorf School
(209) 984-0454


Health Care in Tuolumne County

Health care services in Tuolumne County are primarily found in and around the city of Sonora. The community supports one acute care facility which includes the following services: 24-hour emergency medical care, a full-service cancer center, and a birth center. A new Cancer Center Pavilion and Institute is set to open in late 2017. There is one prompt care clinic, six primary care clinics, one veteran’s medical services and several private medical practices providing primary care including specialty care in the area. Low or no cost family planning and reproductive health services, as well as limited immunization services are provided by the county health department. The Hope Van is providing free medical services and referrals on a walk-in basis at numerous community locations. Dental services are provided by three dental clinics and a number of private dental practices that serve Tuolumne County. Optical services are available throughout the county. There are five Optometrist practices and one Ophthalmologist practice. A county wide adult health fair is held annually in October providing a wide assortment of health screenings and educational opportunities at no cost to participants (blood test fee: $25.00). The event is a community sponsored event drawing support from governmental, community service organizations, institutional, private practice, and individuals who support a two-day Health Fair serving approximately 2,750 participants.

Anthem Blue Cross and California Health and Wellness are the two Medi-Cal Managed Care Plans serving Tuolumne County.

Tuolumne County has five residential care facilities for the elderly and three skilled nursing facilities located throughout the county. Specific facilities provide medical, non-medical, and out-of-home care for clients that require personal services, such as bathing, grooming, observation and help with keeping medical, dental, and vision appointments. There are two facilities that target memory care. One is a residential care facility that specializes in elderly clients with dementia needs and a skilled nursing facility that also has a dementia unit to assist their residents.

Home health and hospice services are available to persons needing skilled medical services in their homes. Physical, occupational and speech therapy services, medical social work, home health aide services, wound care and ostomy services, as well as IV infusion therapy are available.

Tuolumne County Behavioral Health provides mental health services through a range of services and programs. The Crisis, Assessment & Intervention Program (CAIP) program operates 24 hours a day, 7 days/week and provides crisis and emergency psychiatric and supportive services. Outpatient Mental Health Services are also available for children, youth, adults and older adults for assessment and treatment planning, medication services, brief therapy, case management and group therapy to Medi-Cal beneficiaries meeting state criteria guidelines and low income persons. Behavioral Health also provides outpatient alcohol and drug treatment services.

Manteca District Ambulance provides ambulance services under contract. Five full time ambulances are staffed and one flexible deployed ambulance accommodates surges in requested ambulance services. Last year was the busiest year in the history of the service with approximately 8,000 calls. There are currently 266 First Responders, 258 EMT’s, 34 Paramedics, and seven flight nurses certified in the county. One air ambulance is based in Columbia to augment the EMS system by transporting critical patients to specialty care centers out of county.

Sonora Regional Medical Center

Sonora Regional Medical Center provides the following health care services:

• Six Primary Care and Internal Medicine Clinics
• Center for Breast Health
• Full Service Cancer Care-Radiation Oncology, Medical Oncology, Infusion
• Cardiopulmonary Services
• Dental Care
• Diagnostic Imaging and Radiology
• Emergency Care
• Health Outreach
• Heart & Vascular Care
• Home Care
• Hospice Care
• Laboratory Services
• Maternity-Birth Center
• Nutritional Care
• Occupational Health
• Orthopedic Care: Center of Joint Replacement & Center for Sports Medicine
• Palliative Care
• Inpatient and Outpatient Pharmacies
• Prompt Cares
• Rehabilitation: Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapy
• Rural Health Clinic
• Skilled Nursing & Transitional Care Unit
• Spine Health
• Inpatient and Outpatient Surgery Center
• Wound Care including Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy


History

California’s Gold Rush was launched when the first nuggets were found at Capt. John Sutter’s lumber mill at Coloma on January 24, 1848. President James Polk confirmed the richness of the California diggings in December 1848 and the rush was on.

Tuolumne County is located in the area known as the Southern Mines. It was the home of Native Americans for over 8,000 years until the early summer of 1848 when a party of gold seeking Philadelphians arrived in the county’s western portion. They named their camp Woods Crossing and the nearby creek Woods Creek in honor of one of their leaders, the Rev. James Woods. Gold was so plentiful that word spread quickly, bringing would-be fortune hunters to Tuolumne County from such distant places as North and South America, Canada, Mexico, the British Isles, Ireland and the Orient. Some American southerners even brought slaves with them. It was a group of Mexicans from Sonora, Mexico, who established a camp a few miles east of Woods Crossing in March 1849 that would become Sonora.

In August 1848 Col. George F. James founded Jamestown just east of Woods Crossing, but later made a hasty departure leaving behind a mountain of debt. Jamestown’s name briefly became American Camp to erase the memory of Col. James but its original name soon returned. 1848 was also the year Judge A. H. Tuttle arrived at Mormon Gulch, built the first log cabin in the county and established Tuttletown. Nearby Jackass Hill immediately took rank as one of the richest diggings and over a decade later was visited by Mark Twain who drew inspiration for “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County” while in an Angels Camp saloon.

For approximately 10 years Tuolumne County was in the grip of gold fever and rapidly filled with men hoping to strike it rich. New bonanzas were discovered almost daily and colorfully named places sprung up such as Sawmill Flat, Confidence, Shaws Flat, Garrote, Gold Springs and Algerine. With a rapidly rising population and primitive medical facilities, Sonora’s trustees established a hospital. The first drug store in Sonora was opened in the fall of 1849 by Dr. Stothers in downtown Sonora. Sonora was incorporated on May 1, 1851, but had become the county seat on February 18, 1850. One year later the entire town burned to the ground in a fire that began in a French restaurant. It was quickly rebuilt and many of the buildings in the downtown area date from 1852.

Sonora’s population often swelled to 10,000 on Sundays when miners from throughout the region came into town to buy supplies, frequent the town’s many saloons and often gamble away all of the gold they worked so hard to get. Sonora quickly became known as the wickedest gold camp in California. In March 1850 the diggings in Columbia were established by the Hildreth party from Maine after they observed a group of Mexican miners meeting with some success there. Finding results beyond their expectations, they located permanently there and as word spread of their good luck, hundreds of miners soon arrived, new discoveries were made throughout the area and the town of Columbia was born. One of the first Argonauts to arrive was Captain Francis Avent who reportedly mined two and a half pounds of gold on his first day.

The first newspaper published in California’s gold country was the Sonora Herald which issued its premier edition on July 4th 1850. The next year it announced that Tuolumne County’s population had reached almost 20,000 people!

Tuolumne County experienced a second gold rush between 1890 and 1915 aided by large investments of capital and industrial age mining technology. These modern miners tapped into areas left behind by the ‘49ers.

Tuolumne County’s first sawmills were established in the Gold Rush and the timber industry grew to considerable size by harvesting prime ponderosa and sugar pines, and white and Douglas firs. The Sierra Railway arrived in Tuolumne County in 1897 and helped get products to market and passengers to their destinations. Today, tourists flock to Tuolumne County to experience its rich history, shop and dine in vintage buildings and walk in the footsteps of the pioneers.


Housing and Real Estate

Real estate in Tuolumne County is a major industry. It employs more than 278 active agents in more than 66 real estate offices. The natural beauty of the area lures many people to the county for the first time, but it is the quality of life and the cost of living that keeps them here. The average selling price of a home ($261,000) makes this community affordable as compared to some other areas of California. Home sites range from small mountain cabins on half-acre lots in the high Sierra to larger ranch properties on acreage parcels in the foothills. The majority of new construction is by individual contractors building one or two custom homes at a time, but that is changing as new subdivisions are proposed. New homeowners have the option of designing their home from the ground up or buying a home that is “turn key.”

The improved medical facilities, shopping availability and related service industry make Tuolumne County truly self-sufficient. The improving economy provides for a housing market that is not subject to the dramatic inflation and depreciation experienced in many metropolitan residential areas. Low interest rates, fairly stable home prices and rising incomes make Tuolumne County one of the most attractive real estate markets in California.