Colusa County California

Colusa County is located in California in the United States of America. The county seat is Colusa, located in the Central Valley, northwest of the state’s capital, Sacramento; the county is one of the originals of California and was created at the time of statehood, back in 1850. The county’s name derives from the 1844 Rancho Colus Mexican land grant given to John Bidwell.

Colusa County was one of the original counties of California and is best known for its agriculture, most notably its production of rice, almonds, and tomatoes. It offers many wildlife reserves, including privately owned land, most of which are dedicated to seasonal bird life.

Colusa County Sunset On A Ranch
Colusa County Sunset On A Ranch

What Is Colusa County California Known For?

There are many exciting facts about Colusa County. Still, the main one is that it is a hive of agricultural production and produces vast amounts of predominantly rice and tree nuts such as walnuts and almonds. It was also one of the original counties to be formed in California back in 1850.   

  • A Thriving Agricultural Landscape
  • National Protected Areas
  • The Filming Of Tick, Tick, Tick (1970)

A Thriving Agricultural Landscape

Colusa County has a predominantly agricultural industry and economy. Their primary outputs are rice, which they grow the seeds of and mill; almonds are their second most significant produce where they complete the entire process from growth to packaging. And thirdly, they process tomatoes which are often grown elsewhere.

In terms of rice, it is one of, if not the most extensive rice-producing counties in the country, with them harvesting over 135,000 acres of rice (recorded in 2016). They either grow, process, or complete all aspects of production for other produce: seeds, fruits, vegetables, walnuts, wheat, and alfalfa hay.

National Protected Areas

There is the Butte Sink Wildlife Management Area; this area requires that landowners maintain wetlands on their properties to aid in protecting the wetlands for the use of wintering waterfowl. The Colusa National Wildlife Refuge mainly supports wintering populations of ducks and geese, but the grasslands also help endangered plant species.

Wildlife reserves are more than mere conservation spaces for the rare and beautiful things in life; they are the cornerstone of aiding in protecting the environment for future generations.

The Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge Complex is there to support an array of endangered plants and animals. Some animals include the bald eagle, giant garter snakes, tricolored blackbirds, and more.

The Filming Of Tick, Tick, Tick (190)

Tick, Tick, Tick, which was stylized as …tick…tick…tick…, is a 1970 crime drama starring Jim Brown and Ralph Nelson directed it. Metro-Goldwyn-mayor distributed the film, which was racially provocative for its time as it explored the events that occur when an African-American is elected sheriff of a town in a rural county down in the American South.

The movie was filmed in downtown Colusa and featured the historic courthouse. Due to its tense narrative and the controversy that formed around its original release, the film has become something of a cult classic. It is commended for its cutting-edge portrayal of race relations at the time.

Bidwell Mansion State Historic Park
Bidwell Mansion State Historic Park

What’s In Colusa County?

Due to Colusa County primarily being a farming county with a focus on the production of rice, there is not a vast array of other things that happen in Colusa. However, this does not infer that there are no other forms of trade or places and sites worth visiting. Therefore, below we have outlined some of the noteworthy spots you may wish to visit if you ever find yourself in Colusa.

Sacramento River State Recreation Area

The area offers a range of amenities such as group campsites, visitor campsites, sites to picnic on, and boat launching facilities. You will note willow trees along with cottonwoods along the riverbank, and this area offers some of the finest fishing spots in California. You can catch steelhead, rainbow trout, striped bass, and the famous king salmon.

The park is located near downtown Colusa, nine miles east of Interstate 5 and just north of Sacramento. The other facilities they offer are handicapped-accessible campsites, an RV potable water fill-up station, parking (at a fee), and boat launching, for which you also have to pay.  

Sacramento Valley Museum

The museum is in Williams, at 1491 E Street Williams, and is in northern California, found in the center of the Sacramento Valley. The Valley’s history is displayed through artifacts, historical photographs, manuscripts, documents, and textiles and quilts.

You can visit the museum from March through to October, and it is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (Thursday to Saturday). After October, they close in November and stay closed until the end of February. The wonderful thing about this museum is that admission is free, except if you have a group visit via appointment.

Bidwell Mansion State Historic Park

The mansion is built on what was originally a 26,000-acre (110 km2) plot. The original construction began in 1865 and is still standing and running today. The Victorian House Museum is a memorial to John and Annie Bidwell, who owned and lived on the land. General John Bidwell was not only a soldier but also a pioneer, politician, philanthropist, and statesman.

The historic park and mansion are operational for tours on Wednesdays and Saturdays, between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. The tours cost $6 for adults over 18, $3 for youth between 5 and 17, and children younger than five enter for free. The tours are based on a first-come, first-serve basis, and the tour sizes (at the time of writing this article) are limited to eight people.

Things To Do In Colusa County

Colusa is not as popular as some of the other major counties in the United States, but that does not mean it is not worth visiting. It is smaller than many other places but is undoubtedly a tourist destination that is up and coming. You will find many things here, including the Colusa County Fair.

  • Colusa Casino
  • Colusa Golf & Country Club
  • Rocco’s Bar & Grill

Colusa Casino

Of course, the casino in the city of Colusa is a beautiful place and a way to experience the nightlife in Colusa if you are over 18. The casino has been entertaining those who enjoy the pastime of gambling for more than 30 years now. You will find there are more than a staggering 1,200 slot machines and plenty of table games to play as well.

Colusa Golf & Country Club

You can enjoy a lovely 9-holes on this golf course, but by varying the tees, you can turn it into an 18-hole. The course is a Par 72 regulation course and features an array of obstacles such as hills, water hazards, and sand pits, and all these come together to offer a suitable challenge regardless of one’s skill level.

Rocco’s Bar & Grill

The original building that the bar & grill is housed in began being constructed in 1867 and was completed a full two years later. Rocco’s is open for lunch and dinner, and they also offer a banquet room that can be hired for parties or meetings of approximately 65 people. There are hearty meals on sale, and the place provides a casual yet pleasant ambiance.  

Famous People From Colusa County

The famous people that came out of Colusa County include Major League Baseball player Bill Cunningham and Mike Griffin, who also played, and the convicted assassin Byron De La Beckwith.

Bill Cunningham

Bill Cunningham was an outfielder who played for the New York Giants and the Boston Braves. He lived between 1894 and 1953 and played from 1921 to 1924.

Byron De La Beckwith

Byron De La Beckwith was the assassin of civil rights activist Medgar Evers. He was a white supremacist and a Klansman and was sentenced to life in prison.

Mike Griffin

Mike Griffin was a Major League Baseball pitcher born in 1957 and now retired. He played six seasons at the major league level and represented several teams, including the New York Yankees.

Colusa County FAQ

Interesting Facts About Colusa County?

  • In a 2020 census, it was found that the population of Colusa County was as small as 21,839. These are the latest stats on the number of people living in Colusa County, so as you can see, there are very few residents. In Comparison, Coos County, New Hampshire, has a population of 31,268 people and is 30 square miles smaller than Colusa.
  • The current size of Colusa County is 1,860 square miles (2,994 km2). This makes it a tiny county by comparison to the sizes of other counties, but there are still significantly smaller counties.   Back in 1856, sections of the county were given over to Tehama County, and Glenn County received parts in 1891.
  • At the beginning of the 2011-12 academic year, the Colusa High School mascot was changed from the Redskins to the RedHawks as there was a controversy surrounding the name, which was a derogatory word used for Native Americans.
  • The initial post office in the area was commissioned in 1851, and due to it being located on the Southern Pacific Railroad, it quickly became an ideal resting spot for travelers.

Is Colusa County A Good Place To Live?

The summers in Colusa are typically arid and extremely hot, while the winters tend to be cold and very wet. The temperature throughout the year varies between 38°F (3°C) to 98°F (36°C). The residents of Colusa dwell in sparse suburban areas or on farms, and one of the best things about living in Colusa is that the public school system is above the average standard.

Is It Expensive In Colusa County?

A more significant percentage of people rent homes in Colusa than the national rate; is 47.6%, as opposed to the average of 36.2%. Additionally, the national median for monthly rental in the United States sits at $1,023, and in Colusa, they spend, on average, $823 more per month. However, the general cost of living is far less in Colusa than when compared to California in general.

References:

  • Colusa County has a population of 21,839 and is 1,860 square miles:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colusa_County,_California

  • Coos County has a population of 31,268 and is 1,830 square miles:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Co%C3%B6s_County,_New_Hampshire

  • The other produce grown/produced in Colusa:

http://www.seecalifornia.com/farms/county-colusa-annual-crops.html 

  • The temperature in Colusa varies between 38°F (3°C) to 98°F (36°C):

https://weatherspark.com/y/643/Average-Weather-in-Colusa-California-United-States-Year-Round