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Thread: Aurora Aand Masonic road conditions

  1. #1
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    Default Aurora Aand Masonic road conditions

    Hi All,
    Has anybody recently been to either Masonic or Aurora? I am new to GT'ing and was wondering if anyone had any information about road conditions. I ask a couple of the Rangers at Bodie when I was there a few days ago, but they couldn't tell me anything of use. I have a basic 4WD truck off the showroom floor so if you could pass on any information, I would greatly appreciate it!!!

    Rich

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    Darin is offline Rock Crawlin GPS Moving Map Totin Trailblazing Expert Ghost Towner
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    Hey Rich, welcome to the forum.
    There are three threads in the "history" section of the forum created by DWinslow on Masonic and there was some discussion about the road conditions in one of them. You should be able to get some kind of idea of what the roads are like from there.

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    Hi Darin,
    Thank you for getting back to me. I did a quick search before I posted this Thread but didn't find anything. I'll look a little closer this time. Thanks Again!!!
    Rich

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    Here is the thread that I was referring to... http://forums.ghosttowns.com/showthread.php?t=17163 Though he said it's been a while and things may have changed, it could either be better or worse. The other 2 things I could think of is to download/check Google Earth. On there you can zoom in and find the road to the town, zoom in on it and see what it actually looks like or check with the state D.O.T. to see if anyone there knows about the road(s) you want to take.
    Hope this helps.

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    ghost chaser..........If you have a stock 4wd truck with average ground clearance, you won't have any problem getting to either Masonic, or Aurora. The road to Masonic from the Sweetwater Rd. on the Bridgeport side is usually pretty decent this time of year, but we've had rain/snow off and on for the last two weeks or so, and you may want to check at the CHP office in Bridgeport to see if they have any info. You can also get to Masonic from the Hawthorne/Lucky Boy Rd. side (north) , but it's more of an uphill grunt. The only part of the road into Aurora that is sketchy, is the the uphill climb the last 1/2 mile or so , past the old mill ruins. It can get a little mucky after heavy rains or snow. The mining company near the Aurora site keeps the road in passable condition most of the time. I wouldn't take the down canyon Bodie/Aurora Rd. though, as it can be a little bit of a rough 4wd trip at times. Both places are great to visit, and you'll have a fun trip.........

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darin View Post
    The other 2 things I could think of is to download/check Google Earth. On there you can zoom in and find the road to the town, zoom in on it and see what it actually looks like.
    This is what I usually do. This also helps with documenting driving directions, as many of these places involve many different turns and there are so many different dirt roads criss-crossing the desired route.

    Of course, seeing what appears to be a "passable" road on Google Satellite view (aka Google Earth) and actually being able to negotiate it can sometimes be two different things! Once I saw what looked like a "shortcut" to a ghost town that went over a mountain pass instead of the usual route around the mountains...HOLY MACKEREL, it was no shortcut! At the start, it wasn't too bad, and there were plenty of tire tracks...but at the entrance to the canyon, ALL the tire tracks turned around and there were NO tracks into the canyon. Hmmm, thinks me, I don't mind a little rockcrawling and if it gets too bad, I'll just come back out. HA! The "road" was driveable, but it was obvious that it hadn't been graded in many many years....all the dirt/sand that was packed in around the rocks had been washed away, and so it was nothing but rocks the whole way.

    It was so rocky & rough that I had to use 4-Low the whole way. As a result, what would have taken me 1-1/2 hours to drive around on well-graded dirt roads, took me over 2-1/2 hours on a supposed "shortcut." I was so beat up from the ride that I thought I'd be passing blood in my urine (but didn't, thankfully). I spent hours checking the tightness of every bolt & nut on my truck's chassis once I got home!

    Sometimes shortcuts come at a price!

    One time I tried climbing what looked like a good road via Google Earth, but it didn't show a mine shaft right smack in the middle of this road, near the top, after a loooooong climb up a very rocky & washed out trail...that was a long, white-knuckled backing experience!

    I don't mind rockclimbing with my truck (within reason of course), but what I hate about it is when you slide off a rock, or a rock rolls underneath your tires, generally in a downhill direction which means the edge of the road...too many times my truck was sliding/rolling towards the edge of the road (and a LOOOOOONG way down the steep mountainside) for my liking. Even in 4-Low...

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    It's been nearly a decade since I've been between Bodie and Aurora, but I've driven the road many, many times over the 34 years I lived in the area and have found it to be fairly consistant.

    First of all, barring any major flooding, you will find the road between Bodie and Aurora to be driveable even in a stock 4WD vehicle and generally 4WD is not necessary.

    Secondly, there is usually standing ground water on the road near the old stage station a few miles out of Bodie toward Aurora. There is ample room to avoid this most of the time.

    Thirdly, after passing the state line, the road enters a canyon and generally turns rougher, but not seriously rough. Just rough enough to require slowing down and keeping an eye on things. The gradient varies but is never really steep.

    Fourth, the turnoff to Aurora is down just where you exit the canyon and the road improves greatly.

    Fifth, the road into Aurora is generally in good shape to the turnoff to the ghost town.

    Sixth, the road up to Aurora climbs over a hill. You will hit the cemetery first, watch for it in the trees off to your right after topping the hill.

    Seventh, the road down into Aurora townsite is fine, but once hitting town, the road is two track, and there are several two-track roads that were once the town streets that run in a grid in the open canyon that holds the town itself.

    Eighth, don't be tempted to turn down the canyon from the townsite, which is the original road in from Bodie, as it is (or was) impassable as you get back into the Bodie Creek Canyon.
    David A. Wright
    Quote: "Happy Trails To You, Until We Meet Again!"

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    David ..........On your eighth point, are you talking about Del Monte Canyon, that intersects with Aurora Canyon Rd.? I just took that trail last week, and it is passable with 4WD or by quad. It knocks off about 6 miles if you're coming from Bodie.....

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    Holy Cow. it almost sounds like you guys know exactly what you are talking about. Now I want to go try it with my Prius.

    NJ
    "I got four things to live by: Don't say nothing that will hurt anybody. Don't give advice--nobody will take it anyway. Don't complain. Don't explain." Death Valley Scotty Walter Scott 1872-1954

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    Quote Originally Posted by Flatiron View Post
    David ..........On your eighth point, are you talking about Del Monte Canyon, that intersects with Aurora Canyon Rd.? I just took that trail last week, and it is passable with 4WD or by quad. It knocks off about 6 miles if you're coming from Bodie.....
    I think we're talking the same thing, but ...

    The topo map (Aurora, Nevada quad) shows Del Monte Canyon to be that of the main road from Bodie to Fletcher; Bodie Creek drains via Del Monte Canyon.

    The canyon I'm referring to isn't named, but Aurora Creek drains via this canyon and comes out at the site of Del Monte.

    If the road is passable now, that's good and should make for some good exploring of the greater Aurora region.

    Thank you for the information.
    David A. Wright
    Quote: "Happy Trails To You, Until We Meet Again!"

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