March 2024 News

I've been mostly poking around southern Death Valley over the last two months. It's been really nice out there. I'm also still trying to wrap up my Joshua Tree trips.

Photos from a recent trip and future post:

New Trips

New trips since January.

Rhodes Spring Cabin
In 1886, Albert G. Rhodes and his partner discovered a promising silver deposit in the hills behind the spring that would come to bear his name. They extracted and transported 1,200 pounds of ore, worth approximately $800, before tragically perishing on their return trip from Daggett to the mine.
Salsberry Prospect
The Salsberry Prospect was a small mining operation on the shoulder of Salsberry Peak, which can be traced back to the Greenwater Valley copper boom of the early 1900s. Little is known today about the history of the mine, but it appears to have been owned by Jack Salsberry, a
Lost Horse Mine
If you are interested in mining history (and I think you are since you otherwise wouldn’t be here) and are visiting Joshua Tree, you should stop by the Lost Horse Mine. The mine is well known but its history isn’t and fewer people still hike the whole loop trail, which
Lucky Boy Vista
This short trail heads out to the site of the Elton Mine (originally called the Lucky Boy and the Elltun) and the fantastic Lucky Boy Vista. The trail follows the old mine road out to the mine and then returns via a wash. There isn’t anything left of the Elton

Updated Trips

New photos and/or text since January.

Desert Queen and Eagle Cliff Mines
This old trail leads to a couple of historic mines and a hidden rock cabin. These are “must-see” if you are interested in the mining history of Joshua Tree. Desert Queen Mine The Desert Queen is one of the park’s largest mines and has an equally significant history. Frank James
Cary’s Castle
Tucked away in the backcountry wilderness of Joshua Tree National Park is a hidden gem called Cary’s Castle. In 1935, at the tender age of twenty-four, a young man named Arthur L. Cary (often misspelled “Carey,” so the site is called Carey’s Castle in many places) moved from Colorado to
Wall Street Mill
The Wall Street Mill is Joshua Tree National Park’s most intact remaining historic gold stamp mill. Finding a stamp mill like this is rare these days. I’m grateful the NPS has preserved it. Once owned and operated by renowned prospector and rancher Bill Keys, this two-stamp mill was
Golden Bee Mine
Most people who visit the Cholla Cactus Garden in Joshua Tree don’t know that there is an old mine with an interesting bit of history just a few miles away gazing down on them. There are a few minor prospects scattered along this side of the Hexie Mountains, but two
Pinto Wye Arrastra
An arrastra is a simple and primitive gold milling device. Heavy stones are dragged over gold ore to crush it. Mercury and water are added to the floor of the arrastra to create an amalgam and capture the gold. There is somewhat of a mystery about who built and used