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View Full Version : Anybody been to Vail,CA



sandsnow
04-29-2006, 02:01 PM
I'm a new member here. I spent a lot of time exploring desert mines in the Dale district, back 20 years ago. I knew the area pretty well. When I was tromping around there were still a couple of active claims being worked.

I came upon your site and found a listing for Vail, CA which is posted as being located 8 miles east of 29palms and then south 5 miles. I checked my old topo maps. The closest thing I could find is the site of the Maria and Gypsy mines. The Dale sites are farther east, though not by much.

Has anyone tried to find this place??

Thanks, it really has my curiosity up!!

sandsnow
04-30-2006, 07:47 PM
After much research I solved it. The town of Vail posted here is actually referring to the Vail Mining Company.

Reference these links:
http://www.billyholcomb.com/billy_holcomb_chapter_plaques.htm
See item #8

http://www.23.org/~chs/gallery/mar30.31-apr1/
In the long view of the sign on the rock, I recognized the road switchbacking up the hill. It rises above the Supply Mine(which is out of the picture to the left). It points the way to the site of the OK Mine which was operated by the Vail Mining Company. I vaugely remember the sign in my last days being out there.

We drove up there when it was in operation. Operaters were friendly, but secretive. They let us look around, but not go into the mine.

The town is listed as New Dale on topo maps.

coolguy0621
05-01-2006, 12:23 PM
Intoresting links

Dezdan
05-09-2006, 02:27 PM
Whoever gave the info on 'Vail' is mistaken. No such town or camp of Vail every existed. Perhaps they were thinking of 'New Dale' which encompasses the area? The Vail Mining Co. was a small one man type operation that was worked long after WWII & L-208 closed down the mines of the Dale Mining District. Little remains of the mine the Vail Mining Company was working, and what does remain is disappearing faster and faster each year. Vehicles have been vanishing, and wooden structures have been burned.

sandsnow
05-15-2006, 08:49 AM
Whoever gave the info on 'Vail' is mistaken. No such town or camp of Vail every existed. Perhaps they were thinking of 'New Dale' which encompasses the area? The Vail Mining Co. was a small one man type operation that was worked long after WWII & L-208 closed down the mines of the Dale Mining District. Little remains of the mine the Vail Mining Company was working, and what does remain is disappearing faster and faster each year. Vehicles have been vanishing, and wooden structures have been burned.

Dan
That's sad to hear. Sounds like you've been there. Was I correct in that Vail operated the old OK Mine?

The poster of town info was correct in that the Vail operation lasted into at least the early 80's.

Dezdan
05-15-2006, 09:35 PM
That's sad to hear. Sounds like you've been there. I have been there, but it has been a number of years. I have friends who frequent the area so I am kept informed on what all is going on in the area.


Was I correct in that Vail operated the old OK Mine? I don't believe so, as the 'Vail' mine sat on a hill above the OK. Oh, and in the past 2 or 3 years, someone has burnt down the ore bin at the OK mine.


The poster of town info was correct in that the Vail operation lasted into at least the early 80's. I am not sure as to its prior operating status, but there was a caretaker on the site for a number of years. The last caretaker died a tragic death after he caught himself on fire while setting fire to ant hills with gasoline! Someone found him, still alive (and reportedly covered with ants), but he didn't survive the burns.

~Dan