Sactown Spirits: Ghosty Gold Rush Tales

Head into Old Sacramento -- if you dare. (You totally dare.)

Historic Old Sacramento Foundation

THREE-DIGIT CHILLS: Honest and true? It can be 103 in our state's capital city -- and boy howdy, that does happen -- and an evening walk along one of the raised wooden sidewalks of Old Sacramento can lend a spirited sense of the eerie to your sweaty, hot-temperature night. It doesn't have to be chilly in Sacramento to picture spirits roaming those historic streets; the simple "clomp, clomp, clomp" of your footsteps against the wood can up the atmosphere, heat wave or cold wave or somewhere in the middle. That said, October is prime wraith-communing time 'round the Old-West-y destination, and ghosty walking tours shall make for those wooden sidewalks over a half dozen nights.

STARTING ON... Friday, Oct. 10. Nope, these aren't the subterranean tours of underground Sacramento, though one might think that, being that areas below the streets can lean eerie. Rather, you'll roam the 19th-century-esque byways of the oldest part of the city, learning about rapscallions of the past, anecdotes that are dang eerie, and maybe having a sighting or two. Maybe? Consider, at least, that there are few spots in the state more atmospheric than Old Sacramento on a fall evening, especially when it is visited, as it often is, by a rather large murder of crows.

AS FOR UNDERGROUND SACRAMENTO? That's still going, too, though not for long -- the go-below strolls roll up the carpet -- or wooden sidewalks -- for the cooler winter months. Old Sac Underground is on through the middle of December, though the adults-only evening tours wrap on Oct. 30. Could you spend a few days in the storied neighborhood and do both? Stories below ground and ghosties above? The tale-filled twosome lend a textured layer to the Gold Rush history of the area.

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