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Thread: Visit to Rhyolite, NV

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default Visit to Rhyolite, NV

    We dropped by Rhyolite, NV on our way from Vegas to Lone Pine, by way of Death Valley (122 degrees) this past Saturday. The thing I love most about Rhyolite is the lack of people. I love having a town to ourselves to explore. The thing that struck me most about Rhyolite now is that the wildlife has really begun to take over again. There was a time when I was hard pressed to see a Jackrabbit, let alone half-a-dozen in the middle of the day. Add some Cottontail, Chuckar and numerous other song birds and it made for a good mixture of desert wildlife moving back into their areas.

    The buildings themselves haven't changed much since the last time I was there, but they have fenced the public out with small wire barriers and warning signs. A shame, but with walls hanging on by a little stucco or cement, I can see the reasoning behind it.

    We first spent a bit of time up at the railroad depot. One of only two buildings completely fenced off, the outside is in very good condition.

    http://www.varminter.com/images/gt/IMG_0049.JPG

    We then moved down Golden to some of the more popular buildings, just to see how different they look since the last time we were here. Nothing seems to have changed much since the last visit, maybe a brick or two less at the top of the Cook Bank. My wife got a good adrenaline rush when a rabbit that was hiding in the basement decided we were too close for comfort and scurried into a large sage brush. I guess all the "Beware of Rattlesnakes" signs can really make you jumpy!

    http://www.varminter.com/images/gt/IMG_0050.JPG

    Even though the Bank is the most photographed building in Rhyolite, the school is my favourite building.

    Here is a shot from the back:

    http://www.varminter.com/images/gt/IMG_0057.JPG

    Here is one I took a few years ago when a large storm was moving into the area:

    http://www.varminter.com/images/rhyolite1t.jpg

    What a difference a storm and a few years makes!!

    We then headed down to the graveyard. I know the Friends of Rhyolite had been working on putting grave markers on all the graves, but it seems they had to cancel that project because locating the individual sites and matching them to the deceased were next to impossible (due to washouts, etc). It is a somber place, with the hot wind blowing through the creosote making strange sounds and blowing dust off the sites. Some of the graves are noticeable only because the slight outline of disturbed ground is visible. Wiping the names from wood markers, the desert still gives no rest to the weary miners buried here.

    http://www.varminter.com/images/gt/IMG_0065.JPG

    After our visit to the cemetary, we turned west heading to Lone Pine. My wife and I talked about life in Rhyolite and the hardships the men, women and children endured just to survive. Things like running pipes for water, or bringing in building materials for the bank, school and other structures, seem impossible to us now. These people were determined to make a better life and I am thankful there is a legacy remaining so we do not forget.

    Rest well my beloved Rhyolite. We will be back to visit you soon and see what other mysteries and stories you wish to give up...

    Eric A. Mayer
    "The Desert is my Church and Hunting is my God" - EAM

  2. #2
    LauraA's Avatar
    LauraA is offline Rock Crawlin GPS Moving Map Totin Trailblazing Expert Ghost Towner
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    Reading about these wonderful places and viewing the photos is second only to being there.
    Great writing and photos. Thank You.

  3. #3
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    Jul 2006
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    Winnemucca, NV.
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    Those are some cool pics, Eric. Rhyolite is definitely on my to do list.

  4. #4
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    By far my favorite ghost town that I have been to. It's a shame to see the wires but they're not that gaudy. Can't wait to go back. Great pics

  5. #5
    old judge's Avatar
    old judge is offline Rock Crawlin GPS Moving Map Totin Trailblazing Expert Ghost Towner
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    Thank you Eric. Enjoyed your post and pics very much. Mike

  6. #6
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    San Fernando Valley, CA
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    Thanks for a good post and some good pic's!!!
    Andy

  7. #7
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    Feb 2005
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    Your pics make me want to make a sidetrip while on my trip back home to Az.

  8. #8
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    socorro new mexico
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    Thanks Eric,
    The wife and I was there last year and it is a neat place to see, Thanks for the pics.

    Kelly
    Socorro N.M.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
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    Mojave Desert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Mayer View Post
    ...
    We then headed down to the graveyard. I know the Friends of Rhyolite had been working on putting grave markers on all the graves, but it seems they had to cancel that project because locating the individual sites and matching them to the deceased were next to impossible (due to washouts, etc). It is a somber place, with the hot wind blowing through the creosote making strange sounds and blowing dust off the sites. Some of the graves are noticeable only because the slight outline of disturbed ground is visible. Wiping the names from wood markers, the desert still gives no rest to the weary miners buried here.

    http://www.varminter.com/images/gt/IMG_0065.JPG
    I'm glad to see the cemetery does exist. I've been out there a few times but only once had the time to look- without any luck. I'll make sure I'll find it next time, I'd like to add it to my collection.

    Graveyards

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