Thursday, May 08, 2008
Sutter Buttes - Yuba City California
Yuba City's western horizon is dominated by the Sutter Buttes, renowned for being the "Smallest Mountain Range in the World." The range is actually circular with a diameter of 10 miles and covers an area of about 75 square miles. The mountains are the remnants of a volcano that has been dormant for over a million years. South Butte, the highest peak is 2,117 feet above sea level. North Butte is 1,863 feet and West Butte is 1,685 feet above sea level. Before modern levees and dams were built to contain the rivers, winter storms and spring run-off frequently turned the Sacramento Valley into an inland sea making the Sutter Buttes an island refuge for Indians, settlers and wildlife. The Buttes have had many names over the years. The Maidu Indians called them "Histum Yani" which translates as, "Middle Mountains of the Valley" or "Spirit Mountain"