We wanted to do something more than just going to dinner for our upcoming anniversary, so yesterday we took a day trip to Cache Creek indian casino, which is about 2 hours away, outside Sacramento.
We headed out a little before 10 am and got there just before noon. It was a sunny, warm day, a nice day for a drive. We were fortunate to have good radio reception almost all the way there, so we were able to listen to all but the last few minutes of Wait! Wait! Don’t Tell Me!, which was a particularly good episode, too, with Drew Carey on the panel, and Moby as the guest, both of whom were hilarious.
Anyway, Cache Creek has lots and lots of parking, and is in pretty much the middle of nowhere. After getting off the freeway onto Route 16, we drove through some truly small towns: Madison seemed to be little more than a general store a few roads; Esparto is bigger, and you drive right through their downtown, past their school and post office (note to self: they have a shaved ice stand along the way); and Capay seems even smaller than Madison, but features red-brick shoulders down their main street. But mostly it’s just farmland and grape vines. Pretty, but very, very rural.
We easily found parking in the garage and went inside. I took a couple of pictures of the lobby before a security guard came over and told us that we couldn’t take photos pointing the camera towards the casino. A little strange, but oh well. Their lobby is pretty impressive, though:
The casino is much the same as a Las Vegas casino, maybe about average by that standard (bigger than Bally’s, not as big as the MGM). It’s a big room of slot machines and tables games with restaurants around the edge, a nightclub/concert venue on one side, and a large poker room. To my surprise, they even had some penny slots. They also had video poker machines with better payouts than we usually find in Vegas.
We both played some video poker during the afternoon. I had a surprisingly run of luck, getting four-of-a-kind twice. Debbi was not so lucky, which is too bad since she plays a lot more video poker than I do. She could use a run of luck.
The main disappointment for me is that I had heard that they have no limit Hold Em here with 1/2 blinds, but when I asked they said they only had 2/4 blinds. Since I haven’t played NLHE except with my friends at our home games, I wanted to start at the lowest blind structure when playing in a casino. Oh well. Also, one of the room managers told Debbi she couldn’t stand behind me and watch me play one time when she came in, which is different from every other room I’ve played in. I’m not sure what the motivation was there, but whatever.
Anyway, I played 3/6 limit hold ’em instead of no limit. Which even though I ended up down a little was a lot of fun. I made full houses three times and won a number of other hands, going on quite a roll in the middle of the session. Unfortunately the winning stretch was bracketed by a period of making the second-best hand a bunch (a good way to lose a bunch of money), and a card-dead period. I would have finished up a little except that twice a woman managed to make her flush on the turn or river to beat my flopped two pair. But, that’s the way it goes.
We didn’t try any of their sit-down restaurants, instead doing the grill and the deli. The grill was pretty good, the deli was pretty mediocre. The dessert place served great milkshakes, though.
The drive home was uneventful (setting aside the amazing number of bugs which hit my windshield), and we got home almost exactly 12 hours after leaving in the morning.
There’s not quite enough to keep us occupied there for a whole weekend, so I’m glad we didn’t get a room to stay for the weekend, but it should be fun as a day trip a couple times a year. I think leaving just a little earlier would make the trip a little smoother, but this trip went well, and we had fun!