This is a really fun day trip, but could require a designated driver for visits to all the wine tasting rooms! From Groveland head down the hill on Route 120 to Highway 49 north, then follow to Angels Camp, about 45 minutes. Take a right onto Route 4 and follow past Murphys, and Arnold to Calaveras Big Trees State Park.
Wine country in Calaveras County
If touring the Sierra side of California, the groves of Big Trees from this park are wonderful, we think they are far better than the Groves one finds in Yosemite. The trees are easily accessible from the parking areas and there are far fewer tourists to contend with for the trails and photo opportunities here. There are miles of trails, and not all of them go up and down hills. We enjoy tramping about the wilderness for an hour or two before heading back into Murphys for the rest of the day.
When finished with a Big Trees adventure, head west again on Highway 4 to Murphy's. Entering Murphy's you will see a sign that claims to be the "other wine country." We fully agree. Our last trip to Murphy's we did a stop at most of the vineyard tasting rooms, starting with the country-side setting of Ironstone Vineyards, the only tasting room surrounded by their hillside grapes. To reach Ironstone, take a left at the old Murphy's Hotel and follow the signs, anther 2 miles.