In 1924, Babe Ruth stopped in Dunsmuir on a barnstorming tour, playing an exhibition game at the town’s municipal baseball field. Legend has it that one of his home runs sailed all the way to the Upper Sacramento River, where anglers are still chasing wily native trout (late spring and early fall are prime time). These days, most folks breeze through town on I-5, stopping only for gas and then blasting back onto the road. But those who take the time to explore Dunsmuir CA, discover a charming community with plenty of attractions for visitors and residents alike.
Water is key to Dunsmuir’s appeal. The town is surrounded by waterfalls, mountain lakes and top fly-fishing spots. But water isn’t the only draw; pristine parks like Tauhindauli Park on the banks of the Sacramento River and the Dunsmuir Botanical Gardens bring nature right into town with trails through dogwood and Shasta lilies.
The town’s rich railroad history has earned it inclusion on Union Pacific’s Train Town USA Registry and attracts rail buffs to the city’s Railroad Depot Museum, where they can get a bird’s eye view of local trains and learn about the town’s past in the context of a bustling American frontier. And for those who prefer to travel by train, Amtrak’s Coast Starlight stops daily in both directions at the city’s main street station. A county bus, the Stage, also runs north to Mount Shasta and south through Siskiyou County to Redding.
Dunsmuir’s historic center is a quaint and inviting place to visit, shop, dine and stay. The downtown district is home to a number of shops and restaurants, including YAKS on the 5, a locally-owned burger joint that serves up burgers, fries and shakes with a twist. For more shopping, head to Dandelion Dust, an upcycled and freecycled boutique that offers a plethora of goods from furniture to glassware to books.
There’s also the Ted Fay Fly Shop, which has everything you need for a day on the river. And the Dunsmuir Arts Museum offers visual and performing art displays and workshops. For lodging, the Cedar Pines RV Resort is a good option for travelers who don’t want to rough it in an tent or aren’t looking for a hotel room.