Mountain House at Henness Pass
GPS: 39.499994°, -120.890424°
This Mountain House location was the division point between Goodyears Bar and Forest City. The three story road house built by Dan T. Cole in 1860 had a dance hall, bar, post office, and sixteen rooms for lodging. As a stage stop its two barns provided hay for the teams and fresh horses. A blacksmith was also located on site.
It was a well known stage stop on the Sierra Turnpike better known today as Henness Pass Road or the Old Mountain House Road. Prior to 1860 all goods and commodities were transported in by pack-mules. In the winter a dog express was sometimes used. Then on July 4th 1859 the road connecting Downieville with Goodyear’s, Mountain House, and Camptonville was finished by Colonel Platt of the Sierra Turnpike Company. Its completion was aided by citizen donations. The opening day celebration included a Stage coming from Camptonville decked out with flags, banners. Finally they could give up the mule trains for more civilized wheeled transportation.
This highway was the main road for pioneers to travel back and forth to the mountain towns of Sierra County. The road was passable most times in all seasons of the year. James M. Scott ran a line of stages to the mountain house three times a week. At its heyday this road was packed with wagons and pack trains hauling goods and settlers. With the construction of highway 49 the Sierra Turnpike began it’s slow decline and the Mountain House was torn down.