Spencer Le Gate: Highway 174 at a pace that affirms the value of the journey
Much of what’s left of the Nevada County I knew growing up there in the 1950s is trapped in boutique amber.
One exception is the charm in rambling the Colfax Highway, changes along its course mostly evolutionary.
Then a high school student living in Chicago Park, I was on the early class schedule my last class dismissed some time before the buses left to transport both early and late classes.
I would often choose not to wait and hitchhike often not beating the bus on that road then less traveled. A few times I had to walk the entire distance and thus came to know well the length and landscape in depth. The white quartz Narrow Gauge rail bed was still visible as it crisscrossed the road, a broken window to our gold rush history.
Traveling to Nevada City from the valley I still drive Highway 174 — at a pace that affirms the value of the journey, not simply the destination, each twist and turn a path to an abiding memory.
Spencer P. Le Gate
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