California Cavern | Dave Bunnell

If you’re into amazing adventures that you can’t get anywhere else, San Andreas outdoor recreation has you covered. California Cavern, just 20 minutes away in picturesque Mountain Ranch offers wild caving expeditions in their public show cave. These take you far from the walk tour route where the cave is in its wild state, with only your cave helmet light to illuminate the way.

Your group’s headlamps criss-cross through the darkness, making crystalline formations in the ceilings and walls sparkle. It’s magical, it’s muddy, and it’s a delight to your inner child who will thrill to sliding down mud banks, and wading through water-filled underground ravines. These 2-4 hour expeditions will make you feel like an intrepid explorer, just discovering these subterranean wonders.

California Cavern Womb Room

Exiting the Womb Room at California Cavern

These trips are not for the claustrophobic. If you’re not sure where you rate on the claustrophobic scale, California Cavern will let you know. The first stop is the Womb Room which is a small chamber under the Bridge Room – it’s about the size of a volkswagen bug, and the opening looks insanely small. This is the smallest spot you will encounter on your expedition and is designed to be a claustrophobia test.

Once your group is cosily ensconced inside, your guide will treat you to a series of light-hearted, though cringe-worthy cave-related puns to give you a few minutes to settle in and experience this small space to see how you feel. If you’re fine, you’ll exit to continue the rest of the expedition, and if panic starts to set in, you can opt out at this point.

San Andreas outdoor recreation | California Cavern | Dave Bunnell

Mammoth Cave Expedition | Dave Bunnell

San Andreas Outdoor Recreation: Plug Ugly Disc Golf

Disc golf is becoming quite the big deal in Calaveras County, which now offers six courses ranging in elevation from about sea level to about 7,000 feet. Plug Ugly Mine disc golf course in San Andreas is at Alex Quinones Community Park, and features 18-holes, the majority of which are in shade on this well treed course.

Calaveras Disc Golf | Jill Seale

Plug Ugly disc golf course | Jil Seale

Nearby Outdoor Recreation: Valley Springs, Angels Camp, Vallecito, and Arnold

When you’re in San Andreas, outdoor recreation options include the tri-lakes area in Valley Springs, which is only 15 minutes north west. Here you can enjoy hiking, biking and equestrian trails, fishing, boating and camping opportunities at three beautiful reservoirs: New Hogan, Pardee and Lake Camanche. There’s also an 18-hole championship golf course here: La Contenta Golf Club. Get full details from the Valley Springs outdoor recreation page.

Centrally located in Calaveras County, San Andreas is also close to Angels Camp outdoor recreation, Murphys outdoor recreation, Vallecito outdoor recreation and Arnold outdoor recreation.

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