The California Quiz
Take the California Quiz
What do you know about the state of California?
Think you know even the basics about this giant state? Take this quiz and see whether you really know your stuff!
Take the California Quiz!
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California Settlers were Gold Seekers
Settlers came to California for many reasons; Amerindians came looking for food and more land to live on, Russian immigrants came for fur, Spanish missionaries came looking for people to convert, and I'm sure there were probably people coming to California for land, freedom, silver, and puppies, but the majority of the early California settlers came in during the Gold Rush.
The discovery of gold (elementally represented by the symbol Au) in California set off a mass migration that hadn't been seen before or since.
The World Rushed In
Gold Miner Statue
Great California Book for Kids
California is primarily located along what water way?
- Western Ocean
- Atlantic Ocean
- Pacific Ocean
- Caribbean Sea
- Gulf of Mexico
California is not located along the Western Ocean, the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean Sea, or the Gulf of Mexico, but instead its western edge runs along the Pacific Ocean.
California's National Parks
California is Home to 8 National Parks
Which of the following is NOT a National Park in California?
- Sequoia National Park
- Yellowstone National Park
- Yosemite National Park
- Kings Canyon National Park
- Joshua Tree National Park
California is an incredible place. You can visit snow and the beach in the same day travel from the desert to the mountains, there are forests and fields. California is home to a huge variety of landscapes and some pretty incredible ones at that.
Redwood National Park is located in the far north-west section of California. It features looming Redwood trees in a fog-shrouded forest.
Lassen National Park is in the north-eastern section of California and features a sleeping volcano. Mount Lassen erupted in the early 1900s and is still active enough to have boiling mud pots.
Sequoia National Park is in central California and is run together with Kings Canyon National Park. It is home to the giant Sequoia trees that can be big enough to drive through.
Kings Canyon National Park is in central California and is run together with Sequoia National Park. It composed of glacier-scraped granite mountains and valleys.
Yosemite National Park is in eastern-central California, and is a glaciated valley in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Dramatic waterfalls cascading from sheer cliffs and the grand El Capitan and Half-Dome await visitors.
Death Valley National Park is in southeastern California and is home to some of the most extreme geography in the world. The lowest point in the contiguous US, what was once considered the hottest place in the world, sand dunes, old volcanoes, hot springs, and spring wildflowers combine to make a incredible places it could takes weeks to truly appreciate.
Joshua Tree National Park is located in the southeastern section of California and features very unique trees. The park is named for these trees that are like silent sentinels, standing tall in the desert. Their spiky foliage look nothing like a normal tree and they are only found in this area.
Channel Islands National Park is located close to Los Angeles on the western edge of California. It is composed of several islands and to get to them you must take a boat or ferry.
California National Parks - There are 8 National Parks within CaliforniaClick thumbnail to view full-size
California's State Flower
A Golden Flower for the Golden State
What is California's Official State Flower?
- California Poppy
- California Daisy
- California Freesia
- California Dimplewort
- Golden Daisy
California's state flower is the California Poppy. It is a very orange wildflower that blooms all across the hills of the central valley in the spring.
California's State Flower - The California Poppy
California's State Capitol
The Capitol of California
California's state capitol is what city?
- Los Angeles
- San Francisco
- San Jose
Sacramento is a large city in the northern part of the central valley. It is just under 100 miles from San Francisco and 400 miles from Los Angeles. There are several large rivers in the vicinity, constant new housing being built, and a great historic area that contains actual buildings from the gold rush. The area is home to a great many tomato farms and rice fields.
California's State Capital - Sacramento and Some Other Major Cities in California
A Dangerous Place - California's Unsettling Fate
California's Tallest Point
Highest Point in the Contiguous US
What is the tallest mountain in California, and also the highest point in the contiguous US?
- Mount Laramie
- Mount McKinley
- Mount Shasta
- Mount Lassen
- Mount Whitney
Mt. Whitney is 14,505 feet above sea level and thus is the tallest mountain in California as well as the highest point in the contiguous US. It is located on the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, close to Death Valley. It is a popular mountain to climb and part of the Pacific Crest Trail. It is visible from Highway 395 in Lone Pine, California, and appears shorter than Lone Pine Peak due to the fact that it is set back in the mountains a bit further. Look for a row of sharp peaks that resemble a crown.
California's Tallest Mountain - Mt Whitney
California's Lowest Point
Deep in the Desert
What is the lowest point in California and the contiguous United States?
- Point Place
- Owens Valley
- Lassen Valley
- Badwater Basin
- Kings Canyon
The lowest point in the U.S. is in California's Death Valley. It is called Badwater Basin and it is 282 feet below sea level.
California's Lowest Point - Badwater Basin
Highest and Lowest Points
Mt Whitney is the tallest mountain in California and the highest point in the contiguous United States. It is only a very short distance away from the lowest point in the contiguous United States, in Badwater Basin inside Death Valley.
Badwater Basin is 282 feet below sea level, while Mt. Whitney is 14,505 feet above sea level. This dramatic difference in elevation is due to the extraordinary and unique geology of California.
Learn More About California Geology
In what year did California become a state in the United States?
California became a state in 1850 after the Compromise of 1850 was passed. Due to friction between the northern and southern states, and them being unable to agree on whether they should have slavery in California or not, they didn't admit California when it was first proposed that it be admitted.
California's Flag and State Animal
California's Flag and State Animal
California's flag features what animal, which is also California's state animal?
- The California Quail
- The Greater Sea Lion
- The Mongoose
- The Grizzly Bear
- The Golden Trout
Grizzly Bears are now extinct in California after settlers put a bounty on them, but the California flag and the state seal still show their image.
California State Flag
California's State Motto
What is California's State Motto?
- In Gold we Trust
- Finally, I've Found It
- Looking for a Golden Tomorrow
- Golden Hassocks
The Great Seal of the State of California features California's state motto, Eureka, which is a Greek word that means "I Found It" and is used in reference to the gold that caused California's population to grow in leaps and bounds.
California State Motto - Eureka!
Learn More About Amazing California Places
- All About Mono Lake
Mono Lake is an area along Hwy 395 on the edge of California and Nevada near Bodie and Yosemite. It is an incredible place and one everyone should visit.
- Point Reyes, California
Just a bit north of San Francisco, the Point Reyes Peninsula is an incredibly beautiful place. It is wild and covered in interesting plants and animals. Bordered on one side by the San Andreas Fault, and on three sides, almost four, by water, Pt...
- Pinnacles National Monument
Pinnacles National Monument is an amazing place that few people visit. It has wildlife found few other places, fun trails, and incredible geology and rock climbing.
- The Mysterious Alabama Hills of California
The Alabama Hills are located in California, along Hwy 395 and close to Death Valley. It's a fascinating place with beauty everywhere, and it has been used as a movie location many times.
- The Trona Pinnacles
Trona Pinnacles is a little known geological experience near Death Valley, California. They're lots of fun to visit and explore.
- Gem-O-Rama Fun in Trona, California
Even novice rock collectors can collect the crystals at Gem-O-Rama. Once a year near Death Valley, California, people get to go collect crystals unusual and interesting.
- Ballarat: A California Ghost Town
Ballarat is not just a famous mining town in Australia, Ballarat is also the name of a ghost town in California in the USA. It's an interesting ghost town near Death Valley National Park.
- Everyone Should Visit Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park is located in Southern California and is a place everyone should visit. It has amazing sights, stunning panoramas, and the lowest point in the entire United States.
- Moving Rocks of Racetrack Playa
The rocks of Racetrack Playa move. They leave trails behind them on the dry lakebed. How and why are relative mysteries.