Apple errrythaaang! In Northern California, Labor Day signifies the epitome of Fall, with the season opener of Apple Hill! If you aren’t from this parts of the Golden State, I’ll understand your ignorance to the bliss that is rolling hills and acreage of apples, pumpkins, and Christmas trees.
A short, one hour drive from our Capitol city of Sacramento, you find yourself nestled in the delights of apples and an array of its edible derivative. When I say Apple Hill, the only thought that comes to my mind is apple donuts. Even among the other apple goodness! There is apple wine, caramel apples, apple pie (a la mode, if you’d prefer), apple cider, and actual apples! There are plenty of options for you to visit, pop on over to the official website for all of the locations listed. Events, fun runs, ranches, they have it all!
High Hill Ranch
2901 High Hill Rd
Placerville, CA 95667
I always head to the busiest one first, High Hill Ranch, then find others as I see fit. HHR has it all. Most of all, they sell my favorite apple donuts in various forms. I prefer the ginormous apple fritters and the cinnamon sugar apple donut, but there are about 12 different options to choose from! Don’t get me wrong, there are other spots that sell apple donuts, almost all, but I love hitting this one up first. You get the most apple for your buck. HHR has everything that would embody fall – apples, apple cider, apple wine, caramel apples, fresh apple pies, a pond for fishing (crazy expensive to do), a ranch tour on a tractor, plenty of picnic tables, a fudge store, craft tents, kettle corn, and lunch food to balance out the sugar, apple high you are certainly going to have.
Their little wine shop has about five different apple wines, in addition to selling apple shakes and the cutest knickknacks. On the hot day I visited, I opted for the Apple Wine Spritzer, pretty fancy, huh? Apple wine plus Sprite, was the perfect elixir to drink while waiting in the face painting line.
This spot is crazy family friendly, as are most of the locations in Apple Hill! There is ample room for kids to run around and be loud. Most locations cater to families, with things such as face painting and plenty of picnic tables. If you’re trying to save a few pennies, bring your own food for lunch and treat yourselves to a dessert, while still enjoying your surroundings. From Labor Day to Halloween, most locations also sell pumpkins.
I’d set aside a whole day, from transportation to visiting multiple locations, it’s worth the day trip. If you can go on a week day, I’d suggest that. If you don’t mind crowds and lines, then by all means, go on the weekend. Once Apple Hill is open, it’s pretty much inundated with everyone within a 50 mile radius…it’s that fun, tasty, and enjoyable!
Apple Hill is like the California State Fair of Fall!