"Mineral Spring" Log Cabin

Micah, Ed, and I did a lengthy cross-country hike out to a very remote log cabin high up in the mountains. It was an impressive find.

I haven’t found any history of the old place or the mine above it. So, for now, they both remain a mystery.

Judging by the tin cans, bottles, and cabin furnishings, I’m guessing the cabin was first built sometime around the 1900s. The logs are all hand cut by axe and they appear to be from the local trees. A crude wood sled rests against the outside of the cabin and was probably used to haul trees to the site. The remains of canvas still hang on the walls, used to keep the place warm in the winter. The roof was covered in soil. Tin cans tossed outside the cabin are mostly hole-in-top style. These came into use after about 1900. The aqua-colored bottle was probably made before the 1930s Great Depression (see my notes on Dating Historical Sites). Inside the cabin, the dishes date before the Depression as well. The newest item I found was an insect sprayer hanging on the wall which dates from the 1960s or 1970s, I’m guessing.

It seems reasonable to think the prospectors built the cabin to live in while working the mine above then later it was used for hunting or just getting away. Any road or trail that once led to the site is long gone. Washed away by floods, I imagine. I don’t think anyone has used the place in 40 years or more.

Inside the log cabin

The spring nearby is unusual in that it appears to have a mineral build up all around it. The log cabin location makes sense with the spring close by. Overall, it is quite an interesting remote location.

The mine was quite a bit higher up the mountain than the log cabin. We found the entrance almost completely caved.  The adit only goes back a few hundred feet. Outside on the mine dump, we found lumber and rails still waiting for use underground.


On the way back, we took a different route to avoid bushwhacking in the creek. All was going well until we topped out on a high dry fall. Luckily, we were able to skirt it by crossing some cliffs.

But mother nature wasn’t done with us yet. As we got closer to our vehicles, a quick moving storm rolled in and the temperatures dropped dramatically. A howling wind kicked up and our faces were soon numb from the cold. It was freezing by the time we got back to our trucks at sunset. We were beat and headed for our camp for the night. We sat close to the campfire. A cold wind filled with tiny icy snowflakes made for a short evening. These are the good adventures.