Challenge is an unincorporated town in Yuba County. It is located southwest of Woodleaf, northwest of Bullards Bar Reservoir and Greenville, north of Dobbins, northeast of Brownsville, and east of Sharon Valley. It has a population of 396 (as of a 2009 estimate). Its elevation is 2,595 feet. The average annual rainfall is 62.5 inches and average annual snowfall is 15.8 inches. In winter, roads are frequently closed due to snow. The average high temperature in July is 92.4°, and the average low temperature in January is 33.6°.

The native plant community of Challenge is yellow pine forest with a high concentration of serpentine.

The U.S. Postal Service sometimes lists addresses in Greenville and Woodleaf as being in Challenge, because they are all in the 95925 zip code. However, on the Yuba-Sutter Wiki, we prefer listing the more specific locations.


As of a July 2007 estimate1, residents' median age was 46 years.

87.7% of residents were white and non-Hispanic, followed by 4.1% of residents who were Native American.

Of residents 25 or older, 77.4% had at least a high school degree, 9.8% had at least a bachelor's degree, and 5.3% had a graduate or professional degree.

Of residents 15 or older in Challenge and nearby Brownsville and Sharon Valley combined2, 54.6% were married, 19.2% had never married, 16.7% were divorced, 6.4% were widowed, and 3.1% were separated. The Challenge-Brownsville-Sharon Valley area has the highest proportion of divorced residents in the Yuba-Sutter region.

For employed Challenge residents, the average travel time to work was 45 minutes, the longest in the Yuba-Sutter area. For Challenge and nearby Brownsville and Sharon Valley combined, the most common industries for males to work in were the construction industry (25%) and waste management services (15%). The most common industries for females to work in were education (28%); health care (19%); arts, entertainment, and recreation (16%); and utilities (10%). The Challenge-Brownsville-Sharon Valley area has an unusually high proportion of all of these career fields, compared to the rest of the Yuba-Sutter area.

The 2007 median annual household income in the Challenge-Brownsville-Sharon Valley area was $32,460 (the second-lowest in the Yuba-Sutter region, after Linda). The 2008 median home price in Challenge was $167,690. 16.9% of residents in the Challenge-Brownsville-Sharon Valley area were below the poverty level in 2007, and 12.6% were below half the poverty level.


Challenge began as the site of Challenge Mills, a sawmill built in 1856.3


Places to Have Fun

Places to Learn

Places to Worship

Other Places

The Challenge Post Office is a log cabin. Photo by queerbychoice.

Main Roads


Challenge-Brownsville entry on Wikipedia Sperling's Best Places: Challenge City Data: Challenge-Brownsville, California


1. Sperling's Best Places: Challenge
2. City Data: Challenge-Brownsville, California
3. Historic Spots in California: Fifth Edition by Douglas Kyle, Hero Rensch, Ethel Rensch, and Mildred Hoover. Stanford University Press, 2002