Amador County, California is snuggled tightly in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains just southeast of Sacramento. It has a population of approximately 40,000 and claims Jackson as its county seat. Billing itself as The Heart of the Mother Lode, it is famous for its location in Gold Country as well as its many fine wine growing venues.
The gold mining era was one of the area’s biggest heydays. The area was covered in goldmines in the 1800’s including the Kennedy mine, the Argonaut Mine, the Lincoln and the Central Eureka. The Kennedy Mine was said to be the deepest of its time. In 1942 all Mother Lode mines were closed by the federal government.
There are a few national protected areas in Amador County as well. Eldorado national Forest and Mokelumne Wilderness are both partially in the Amador County. The Mokelumne Wilderness area was named after the beautiful Mokelumne River which took its name from the Mi-wok Indian village. It encompasses 105,165 acres of wilderness. Elevations reach as high as 10,381 feet.
Amador County is home to the cities of Amador City, Ione, Jackson, Plymouth and Sutter Creek as well as a whole host of unincorporated places and census designated places. The area is rife with attractions and events throughout the year. There are several lakes so outdoor activities are prolific. There is always a place to go fishing, camping, swimming and boating. Historic sites are plentiful as well. Visitors enjoy sites like the Roaring Camp Mining Company, the Kennedy Mine, the Knight Foundry and Volcano Theater Company.
There are 42 wineries in the area and they are always offering activities, events and tastings. Wineries began to pop up in Amador county in 1849, shortly after gold was discovered. Most of the early vintners were Europeans that travelled to the area to try their luck in the gold mines. Some of the more well-known wineries in the area include Renwood, Shenandoah Vineyards and Vino Noceto.
Several major highways run through this area of California including Route 16, Route 26, Route 49, Route 88, Route 104, and Route 124. As with any county so full of major highways, it has its share of car accidents and other roadside calamities.
On August 5th of 2015, a tractor trailer spilled 1600 gallons on state route 88 and the dirt shoulder causing the road to close for several days. Christopher Liby was rushing home on his motorcycle to comply with his parole regulations to be home by 10, when his motorcycle went down in April of 2015. His passenger, Rebekah London was thrown from the motorcycle and run over by passing cars. She died at the hospital. An article in the Lodi News by Scott Thomas Anderson reported in 2012 that state route 88 has been the location of many motorcycle deaths and accidents throughout the years. Late January 2014 saw a hideous crash at Ridge and New York Ranch roads that injured three and killed one. Two vehicles were involved, one catching fire and burning for almost 45 minutes. In another accident in that month near the same roads, a 42 year old woman lost her life when for unknown reasons her vehicle crossed into oncoming traffic. Another car was involved and its three passengers were life-flighted to an area hospital.
Every city has its share of car accidents and some are not the drivers fault. Many accidents occur due to road construction, negligent drivers and weather conditions. Mosely Collins has years of experience in Amador county car accidents.