Huell Howser, Host of Public TV’s ‘California’s Gold’ Dies at 67

By Kevin Eck 

Huell Howser, best known for hosting the iconic public television series “California’s Gold,” died late Sunday.  He was 67 years old.

Howser took his viewers through California’s cities, parks and museums equipped with little more than a handheld stick mic and his enthusiasm for the wonders of the Golden State.

KCET, the Los Angeles public television station that produced his shows, posted a tribute to Howser on its website saying in part,

Huell was able to brilliantly capture the wonder in obscurity. From pastrami sandwiches and artwork woven from lint to the exoticism of cactus gardens and the splendor of Yosemite — he brought us the magic, the humor and poignancy of our region. We will miss him very much.

After the jump you can watch a video of Howser singing “California Here I Come.”

The Tennessee native started his TV career at WSMV in Nashville before moving to WCBS in New York.  In 1981 he got a job as a reporter for Los Angeles CBS owned station, KCBS. Later, he started producing his travel shows, including “Videolog,” “California’s Gold,” “California’s Green,” “Road Trip,” and “Visiting.”

A tribute to Howser can also be found on KCET’s facebook page, with thousands of viewers leaving comments remembering the iconic host.

The Los Angeles Times said of Howser,

Howser was, in the best sense, a tourist — “adventurer” is the more apt word — who had read just enough of the guidebook to know what he wanted to see, but not so much as to make the trip redundant. He went into a room with things left to learn, so that he and you learned them together.

Here’s a video Howser singing “California Here I Come”