Main attractions are like a main dish. It’s what puts a place on the map. Literally! On the other hand, oddities and curiosities are the spice of life. These are the things that spark a bit of wonder and are raised in conversation with friends and family. They’re just plain… different. Would you travel far to see them? Probably not, but if you’re near any of these weird things to see in California High Sierra, they’re well worth a diversion.
Near the outdoor mecca known as Bishop is the quiet unassuming Laws Railroad Museum. On its eleven-acre piece of property, there are a myriad of things to check out like the vintage human powered rail cars you can actually ride on the narrow gauge. The coup-de-gras though is the stuffed Siamese two-headed lamb. The lamb was born on Matlick farm northwest of Bishop and ended up at the museum.
Check out Visit Bishop’s amazing post for more weird & wonderful things to see in the Eastern Sierra.
Upside Down House
Inspiration comes to people in many different ways. For one long-time resident of the Eastern Sierra, it came through two children’s stories “Upside Down Land” and “The Upsidownians.” Can you imagine a world where people lived upside down? Well, you now get a chance to see it in person in the world-renowned Upside Down House. Located on the front lawn of the Mono Basin Historical Society and Museum, everything inside and out is upside down including the plaque. This marvel alongside the other unique museum attractions will definitely spark the inner wonder in you. Here’s 10 additional trip ideas in and around Mono County to consider checking out too.
Railroad Tracks Into Lake Tahoe
Up and down the western shores of Lake Tahoe, you’ll see a few spots where there are railroad tracks that seemingly go nowhere and into the lake. The resounding question most will ask is “Why?” Despite the fact that there were at least four narrow-gauge railroads that helped transport lumber from the shores to the Comstock lode in Virginia City, these tracks are not related to them at all. In fact, nearly all of them were used to transport large wooden race boats to the waters. A great example of one can be seen near the Hellman-Ehrman mansion.
There’s BOOKS In Them Thar Hills…
All throughout the Sierra Nevada, the California Gold Rush can be seen and felt in many ways including inside of a bookstore. The town of Sonora was built upon old mine shafts and underground tunnels. So, the Legends Books, Antiques, & Soda Fountain decided to use this to their advantage. The café and soda shop is located in what was originally a general store. Take heed though and head underground to the old gold mine shaft. Instead of gold nuggets, they’ve now transformed the abandoned shaft into a bookstore. You can now peruse the books that are now lining the walls.
During the day, the elder statesmen known as the Sequoias in Sequoia National Park loom tall over you. But, it’s when the sun goes down something emerges that’s a bit different… a glowing millipede. These blind, nocturnal creatures give off a teal hue that’s iridescent. How? Well, the Motyxia has a special type of protein that produces the glow from beneath their tough exterior. We’re not talking a mild glow, but rather one so bright that you could technically read something. This is a warning to all predators saying “Hey! I’m toxic!”
The High Sierra is home to A LOT of big adventures, attractions, and things to experience… but as you can see, it’s a good idea to make sure you have a bit of flexibility in your schedule so that you can also enjoy these obscure attractions in the rugged Sierra Nevada.
Author: Alex Silgalis
Alex Silgalis is an outdoors travel writer who enjoys snowboarding, mountain biking, or having a cold one from a local mountain brewery. See more of Alex’s work at https://localfreshies.com
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