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Thread: Las Vegas, Nevada

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    Default Las Vegas, Nevada

    Originally posted by Chris

    : Hi,
    : Does anyone know if the ghost towns around Las Vegas (including Rhyolite, which I know is a bit of a drive) are accessible this time of year (end of January)? Also, can anyone recommend a reasonably priced tour operation that would let me pick specific towns to see? Does such a service exist? I've searched the web and all I can find are some jeep tours that look great but are a bit out of my price range.
    : thanks!
    : Chris


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    Default Re: Las Vegas, Nevada

    Originally posted by David A. Wright

    : Ghost towns around Las Vegas tend to be accessible. It occassionally does snow in Las Vegas and there is much upland country near Vegas that does get considerable snow.

    : Such sites such as Potosi might have a bit of snow, but Potosi is on a maintained dirt road with occupied homes within sight, though that road would likely be low on the snow removal priority list and cleared a day or two after any storm. The semi-ghost of Goodsprings is on a state highway and thus maintained. There are several other Las Vegas area ghost towns, but require a SUV or 4x4 truck.

    : I have no knowledge of any tour businesses that include ghost towns, so cannot comment on that.


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    Default Re: Las Vegas, Nevada

    Originally posted by Chris

    : Thanks, David! Maybe I'll rent a car if the weather's good and check those two out.
    : Chris

    : : Ghost towns around Las Vegas tend to be accessible. It occassionally does snow in Las Vegas and there is much upland country near Vegas that does get considerable snow.

    : : Such sites such as Potosi might have a bit of snow, but Potosi is on a maintained dirt road with occupied homes within sight, though that road would likely be low on the snow removal priority list and cleared a day or two after any storm. The semi-ghost of Goodsprings is on a state highway and thus maintained. There are several other Las Vegas area ghost towns, but require a SUV or 4x4 truck.

    : : I have no knowledge of any tour businesses that include ghost towns, so cannot comment on that.


  4. #4
    ruzzel01 Guest

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    Well, sites such as Potosi might have a bit of snow, but it is a maintained dirt road with occupied homes within sight. I think that Goodsprings is on a state highway and thus maintained.




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    Default Re-post on Nelson (95 south to 165 nr Vegas)

    It is July now so way beyond the original poster's posting date, but just FYI the drive out to Nelson (near Las Vegas) and beyond is quite interesting and somewhat off the beaten track. You go south on 95 from Vegas past Boulder City, and take 165 out from 95 and keep going to El Dorado canyon.

    The elevation increases rapidly as you drive up the mountain to Nelson (is that a dumb statement or what) and the views are spectacular as you get closer to the Colorado east of Nelson.

    The Tehatchicup mine near El Dorado canyon is also an interesting stop. All of this is within forty or fifty miles (?) of Vegas and very few tourists ever go out there.

    When you drive all the way out and stop down at the Colorado river it appears someone has already been out there doing a lot of dredging, maybe from El Dorado camp, which existed in the late 1800's to early 1900's.

    El Dorado camp was on the Colorado long before Boulder Dam was built (south of today's dam location) and had a lot of history. Evidently that entire El Dorado canyon location around Nelson was pretty lawless in the old days when Vegas was still Gass ranch and the "sheriff" was many miles away in Pioche!
    Last edited by sbruce; 07-20-2009 at 03:09 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ruzzel01 View Post
    Well, sites such as Potosi might have a bit of snow, but it is a maintained dirt road with occupied homes within sight. I think that Goodsprings is on a state highway and thus maintained.
    Several years ago, during one of my then-frequent trips to the Potosi Mine, a home was recently built across the dirt road from the ruins of the tramway & springs....I spoke with the owner, and he informed me that he also owned the Potosi Mine & would be fencing it off as well as posting "No Trespassing" signs. He said he planned on refurbishing the mine & surrounding area, and offering tours inside. I left him my name & phone number to contact in case he needed any volunteer assistance to get up & running, but he never did contact me....subsequent trips found a few "No Trespassing" signs around, but the gate to the residence was locked & I couldn't get anyone's attention, so I drove on.

    I think access to the Potosi Mine might still be restricted; I haven't been able to find out anything recently, so perhaps I need to take another recon trip out there in the next several weeks (my Dad & I are going to start hitting the Goodsprings District mines hot & heavy starting Monday, before the BLM closes them all off completely).

    Does anyone have any recent, reliable info on the Potosi Mine?

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    Some areas around Las Vegas I'd highly recommend would be (but in no particular order):

    1. Techatticup Mine (Nelson, NV; just north of Searchlight & Laughlin). Tours offered by Eldorado Canyon Mine Tours/Colorado River Tours (http://eldoradocanyonminetours.com/), contact info available on website. Paved road all the way to the mine site, so rental cars are fine.

    2. Arden Plaster Mines (see my photo thread with directions & coordinates at http://forums.ghosttowns.com/showthr...ewpost&t=17414). 4-wheel-drive or ATVs are required to access, unless you park off the road and hike in.

    3. The old Mormon Fort located near downtown Las Vegas; the new Springs Preserve off of Valley View/Alta (near US95 and the Meadows Mall) is also worth visiting.

    4. The old railroad trail outside Boulder City, near Hoover Dam, is a hiking & biking trail maintained by the NPS, and well worth a visit. It features many old railroad tunnels constructed by Six Companies Inc. in order to transport construction materials for the building of Hoover Dam in the 1930s. The last tunnel nearest the dam has been reopened for pedestrian traffic! Kudos to the NPS for preserving & maintaining a great historic trail! You can also explore the northern leg that is NOT maintained, by following it North from the visitor's center & trailhead (well-marked signs from the road heading to the dam). It goes through a big cut, features several large fills, and ends on a residential street in Boulder City. While you're there, stop in at the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Boulder City, and also take time to walk around old historic Boulder City...my wife & I love going down there for a quick get-away. Lots of historic buildings, shops, bars, and restaurants. No gambling though! Unfortunately, the historic Boulder City Hotel just closed due to lack of business...sad.

    5. Goodsprings: Just 45 minutes south of Las Vegas, paved highways all the way in & through. Stop in at the Pioneer Saloon on your way in for a quick drink, snack, and visit; they'll appreciate the business. You can poke around some of the old mine ruins & tailings by driving on a well-graded dirt road to the N-NW of Goodsprings. Just PLEASE be sure to respect any "No Trespassing" signs! Some mines are posted as such. Most have been bulldozed or dynamited shut, including the Yellow Pine Mine, but you can explore the HUGE tailings piles and look at the remaining structures. Sharp eyes will be able to pick out the old Yellow Pine Mining Railroad right-of-way heading N-NW out of town, as well as near the junction of Hwy 161 & the Goodsprings Highway.

    6. St Thomas: I believe since the level of Lake Mead has dropped, the foundations & ruins of the old settlement of St Thomas are visible again. Refer to a road atlas or map; located near Logandale, about 1 hour + driving distance N-NE of Las Vegas, just off I-15.

    7. Gold Butte: If you have at least a full day and a 4x4 or ATV, you can explore the old mines & structures scattered around Gold Butte, which is past Logandale & Bunkerville. VERY HOT in the summertime though! Lake Mead access possible in spots (or used to be; I haven't been there in 15 years).

    8. Caliente & Pioche: Aaah, two of my favorite NV towns, located several hours NE of Las Vegas off US93. In the days of steam locomotives, the Union Pacific maintained a roundhouse & turntable with extensive maintenance facilities in Caliente, and just behind the roundhouse ruins is the old right-of-way grade for the UP branch to Pioche, which served the mines there; since the rails were finally lifted in 1985, most of the old railroad bridges are still in place (but much of the grade is now on private property & fenced). The old UP passenger station is still there, and worthy of looking around. The local businesses will appreciate your fuel & food purchases. There is also a very good burger joint there, we LOVE stopping there for a bite to eat whenever we pass through.

    Pioche is a hidden gem; I could spend hours & pages upon pages describing the wonderful people, sights, mines, and other items of interest we've experienced there. I simply love Pioche & its residents! It's a living ghost town, so be respectful of private property and "No Trespassing" signs. LOTS to see & explore here!! I'll save a detailed description of my many many trips here for another thread, which will NOT be 56K-friendly!

    9. Ely: About 4 hours' drive NE of Las Vegas on US93. WOW; although we would love to retire to the Pioche area, we are most likely to relocate here to Ely when we retire in 10-13 years. FANTASTIC people here, very conservative & friendly, lots of veterans & military retirees. LOTS of items of historic interest to see & explore. The Nevada Northern Railroad (aka "The Ghost Train") offers daily excursions and still has ALL of its original maintenance facilities intact & available for walking tours. You can head NW along Hwy 50 to Ruth, and up to the edge of a working open-pit copper mine, which has many neat static displays of historic mining equipment. Or head NE out of town to see the old High Line on the NNRR that dropped the copper ore into the huge mill facilities. The NNRR right-of-way still has ties & rails in place, and heads all the way north to Wells, NV, to connect with the Union Pacific line there (formerly Central Pacific, then Southern Pacific). To the East along Hwys 50 & 6 is the old mining district of Osceola, one of my favorites to explore....it actually features junipers & small pine trees, a nice change from the hot desert!

    I could go on for hours about the great things to see & explore in Ely, but I'll save it for another time.

    10. Beatty: Now we're on the western side of Nevada, along the border with California, off US95. About 2 hours' drive NW of Las Vegas. Just to the west of Beatty is the fabled ghost town of Rhyolite (and Bullfrog). Unfortunately, many of the old famous mines are being either covered up or "daylighted" by the currently-operating gold mines in the area. The Carrara marble mines & old gravity-powered incline railroad are just south of Beatty. Several old mining camps are also located near Beatty, as are many many old mines. The old railroad grades for the Las Vegas & Tonopah RR (my personal fave), the Tonopah & Tidewater RR, as well as the Bullfrog Goldfield RR are all located in & around Beatty and most are able to be explored. Be sure to top off your fuel tank & grab a snack from one of the local businesses there; they'll appreciate it.

    11. Death Valley: Without a doubt, worthy of the time taken to visit. Allow yourself at least ONE FULL DAY to see the minimum; 2 or 3 full days are necessary to truly see the full beauty & wonders of this National Park. Overnight stays are made easy with advance bookings at the Furnace Creek Ranch, or motels in Tonopah or Beatty (if I missed any, I apologize in advance). I don't need to waste anyone's time here explaining all there is to see here; but WOW, well worth the visit!!! The best time, IMHO, is in late March when the wildflowers are blooming; when I took my parents there in March 2004, the whole park was covered in all different varieties of wildflowers...it was beautiful (and cooler)!

    12. Goldfield: About an hour north of Beatty on US95. WOW! A true living ghost town, with tremendous mining areas & ruins, as well as extant old structures. Well worth the visit!! Very friendly residents, from my experiences anyway...

    13. Tonopah: An hour north of Goldfield on US95. Like Goldfield, WOW! LOTS of mining history & historic buildings/structures worthy of exploration, as well as an interesting mining museum & display. Lots of motels & places to stay here. Tonopah is a good gateway for extensive exploration trips (Berlin, Belmont, Candelaria, Silver Peak, Darwin, Panamints, et al...).

    -------------------------------

    If I've left any others out, please add to the list! I'm just going off of memory here, I don't even have a map in front of me...

    Hope this helps...there is soooo much more to Vegas & its surroundings than the casinos & the Strip (blech!).

    For the more adventurous, there is a cornucopia of 4x4 trails, old mines & ghost towns, and more just off of I-15 over the border in California, especially in & around the Mojave Preserve. There is even an old open-pit mine (the Colosseum Mine) at the far north end of the Mojave National Preserve, that is visible from your airliner when taking off from the Las Vegas airport (I've spotted it many times!), as long as you take off to the West.

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    Quote Originally Posted by silverstate55 View Post
    Some areas around Las Vegas I'd highly recommend would be (but in no particular order):

    1. Techatticup Mine (Nelson, NV; just north of Searchlight & Laughlin). Tours offered by Eldorado Canyon Mine Tours/Colorado River Tours (http://eldoradocanyonminetours.com/), contact info available on website. Paved road all the way to the mine site, so rental cars are fine.

    2. Arden Plaster Mines (see my photo thread with directions & coordinates at http://forums.ghosttowns.com/showthr...ewpost&t=17414). 4-wheel-drive or ATVs are required to access, unless you park off the road and hike in.

    3. The old Mormon Fort located near downtown Las Vegas; the new Springs Preserve off of Valley View/Alta (near US95 and the Meadows Mall) is also worth visiting.

    4. The old railroad trail outside Boulder City, near Hoover Dam, is a hiking & biking trail maintained by the NPS, and well worth a visit. It features many old railroad tunnels constructed by Six Companies Inc. in order to transport construction materials for the building of Hoover Dam in the 1930s. The last tunnel nearest the dam has been reopened for pedestrian traffic! Kudos to the NPS for preserving & maintaining a great historic trail! You can also explore the northern leg that is NOT maintained, by following it North from the visitor's center & trailhead (well-marked signs from the road heading to the dam). It goes through a big cut, features several large fills, and ends on a residential street in Boulder City. While you're there, stop in at the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Boulder City, and also take time to walk around old historic Boulder City...my wife & I love going down there for a quick get-away. Lots of historic buildings, shops, bars, and restaurants. No gambling though! Unfortunately, the historic Boulder City Hotel just closed due to lack of business...sad.

    5. Goodsprings: Just 45 minutes south of Las Vegas, paved highways all the way in & through. Stop in at the Pioneer Saloon on your way in for a quick drink, snack, and visit; they'll appreciate the business. You can poke around some of the old mine ruins & tailings by driving on a well-graded dirt road to the N-NW of Goodsprings. Just PLEASE be sure to respect any "No Trespassing" signs! Some mines are posted as such. Most have been bulldozed or dynamited shut, including the Yellow Pine Mine, but you can explore the HUGE tailings piles and look at the remaining structures. Sharp eyes will be able to pick out the old Yellow Pine Mining Railroad right-of-way heading N-NW out of town, as well as near the junction of Hwy 161 & the Goodsprings Highway.

    6. St Thomas: I believe since the level of Lake Mead has dropped, the foundations & ruins of the old settlement of St Thomas are visible again. Refer to a road atlas or map; located near Logandale, about 1 hour + driving distance N-NE of Las Vegas, just off I-15.

    7. Gold Butte: If you have at least a full day and a 4x4 or ATV, you can explore the old mines & structures scattered around Gold Butte, which is past Logandale & Bunkerville. VERY HOT in the summertime though! Lake Mead access possible in spots (or used to be; I haven't been there in 15 years).

    8. Caliente & Pioche: Aaah, two of my favorite NV towns, located several hours NE of Las Vegas off US93. In the days of steam locomotives, the Union Pacific maintained a roundhouse & turntable with extensive maintenance facilities in Caliente, and just behind the roundhouse ruins is the old right-of-way grade for the UP branch to Pioche, which served the mines there; since the rails were finally lifted in 1985, most of the old railroad bridges are still in place (but much of the grade is now on private property & fenced). The old UP passenger station is still there, and worthy of looking around. The local businesses will appreciate your fuel & food purchases. There is also a very good burger joint there, we LOVE stopping there for a bite to eat whenever we pass through.

    Pioche is a hidden gem; I could spend hours & pages upon pages describing the wonderful people, sights, mines, and other items of interest we've experienced there. I simply love Pioche & its residents! It's a living ghost town, so be respectful of private property and "No Trespassing" signs. LOTS to see & explore here!! I'll save a detailed description of my many many trips here for another thread, which will NOT be 56K-friendly!

    9. Ely: About 4 hours' drive NE of Las Vegas on US93. WOW; although we would love to retire to the Pioche area, we are most likely to relocate here to Ely when we retire in 10-13 years. FANTASTIC people here, very conservative & friendly, lots of veterans & military retirees. LOTS of items of historic interest to see & explore. The Nevada Northern Railroad (aka "The Ghost Train") offers daily excursions and still has ALL of its original maintenance facilities intact & available for walking tours. You can head NW along Hwy 50 to Ruth, and up to the edge of a working open-pit copper mine, which has many neat static displays of historic mining equipment. Or head NE out of town to see the old High Line on the NNRR that dropped the copper ore into the huge mill facilities. The NNRR right-of-way still has ties & rails in place, and heads all the way north to Wells, NV, to connect with the Union Pacific line there (formerly Central Pacific, then Southern Pacific). To the East along Hwys 50 & 6 is the old mining district of Osceola, one of my favorites to explore....it actually features junipers & small pine trees, a nice change from the hot desert!

    I could go on for hours about the great things to see & explore in Ely, but I'll save it for another time.

    10. Beatty: Now we're on the western side of Nevada, along the border with California, off US95. About 2 hours' drive NW of Las Vegas. Just to the west of Beatty is the fabled ghost town of Rhyolite (and Bullfrog). Unfortunately, many of the old famous mines are being either covered up or "daylighted" by the currently-operating gold mines in the area. The Carrara marble mines & old gravity-powered incline railroad are just south of Beatty. Several old mining camps are also located near Beatty, as are many many old mines. The old railroad grades for the Las Vegas & Tonopah RR (my personal fave), the Tonopah & Tidewater RR, as well as the Bullfrog Goldfield RR are all located in & around Beatty and most are able to be explored. Be sure to top off your fuel tank & grab a snack from one of the local businesses there; they'll appreciate it.

    11. Death Valley: Without a doubt, worthy of the time taken to visit. Allow yourself at least ONE FULL DAY to see the minimum; 2 or 3 full days are necessary to truly see the full beauty & wonders of this National Park. Overnight stays are made easy with advance bookings at the Furnace Creek Ranch, or motels in Tonopah or Beatty (if I missed any, I apologize in advance). I don't need to waste anyone's time here explaining all there is to see here; but WOW, well worth the visit!!! The best time, IMHO, is in late March when the wildflowers are blooming; when I took my parents there in March 2004, the whole park was covered in all different varieties of wildflowers...it was beautiful (and cooler)!

    12. Goldfield: About an hour north of Beatty on US95. WOW! A true living ghost town, with tremendous mining areas & ruins, as well as extant old structures. Well worth the visit!! Very friendly residents, from my experiences anyway...

    13. Tonopah: An hour north of Goldfield on US95. Like Goldfield, WOW! LOTS of mining history & historic buildings/structures worthy of exploration, as well as an interesting mining museum & display. Lots of motels & places to stay here. Tonopah is a good gateway for extensive exploration trips (Berlin, Belmont, Candelaria, Silver Peak, Darwin, Panamints, et al...).

    -------------------------------

    If I've left any others out, please add to the list! I'm just going off of memory here, I don't even have a map in front of me...

    Hope this helps...there is soooo much more to Vegas & its surroundings than the casinos & the Strip (blech!).

    For the more adventurous, there is a cornucopia of 4x4 trails, old mines & ghost towns, and more just off of I-15 over the border in California, especially in & around the Mojave Preserve. There is even an old open-pit mine (the Colosseum Mine) at the far north end of the Mojave National Preserve, that is visible from your airliner when taking off from the Las Vegas airport (I've spotted it many times!), as long as you take off to the West.
    Hey dude thanks for the information I'm going to be out that way next year but I only have time to do 1 or 2 on the list and wondered if you would recommend a couple of Landlord Insurance in particular??

    Thanks for the advice and i look forward to your reply
    Last edited by ringer; 12-22-2011 at 02:52 AM.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ringer View Post
    Hey dude thanks for the information I'm going to be out that way next year but I only have time to do 1 or 2 on the list and wondered if you would recommend a couple of them in particular??

    Thanks for the advice and i look forward to your reply
    I recommend them all, that's why I took the time to list them.

    However, the voice in the back of my head (the rarely-listened-to logical one) says to pick the Techatticup Mine Tour first, since it's close to Las Vegas AND if the owners are willing to take the time & financial risk to not only restore the mine & facilities to a condition suitable for tours, but also put up the necessary bonds & risk insurance, then they surely deserve to have you visit them.

    Hope this helps, good luck!
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."
    --Sigmund Freud, General Introduction to Psychoa*alysis (1952)

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by silverstate55 View Post
    Some Vegas Hotel list I'd highly recommend would be (but in no particular order):

    1. Techatticup Mine (Nelson, NV; just north of Searchlight & Laughlin). Tours offered by Eldorado Canyon Mine Tours/Colorado River Tours (Vdara, contact info available on website. Paved road all the way to the mine site, so rental cars are fine. Stratosphere Hotel Las Vegas

    2. Arden Plaster Mines (see my photo thread with directions & coordinates at Las Vegas Promos). 4-wheel-drive or ATVs are required to access, unless you park off the road and hike in.

    3. The old Mormon Fort located near downtown Las Vegas; the new Springs Preserve off of Valley View/Alta (near US95 and the Meadows Mall) is also worth visiting.

    4. The old railroad trail outside Boulder City, near Hoover Dam, is a hiking & biking trail maintained by the NPS, and well worth a visit. It features many old railroad tunnels constructed by Six Companies Inc. in order to transport construction materials for the building of Hoover Dam in the 1930s. The last tunnel nearest the dam has been reopened for pedestrian traffic! Kudos to the NPS for preserving & maintaining a great historic trail! You can also explore the northern leg that is NOT maintained, by following it North from the visitor's center & trailhead (well-marked signs from the road heading to the dam). It goes through a big cut, features several large fills, and ends on a residential street in Boulder City. While you're there, stop in at the Nevada State Railroad Museum in Boulder City, and also take time to walk around old historic Boulder City...my wife & I love going down there for a quick get-away. Lots of historic buildings, shops, bars, and restaurants. No gambling though! Unfortunately, the historic Boulder City Hotel just closed due to lack of business...sad. Riveira Hotel Vegas

    5. Goodsprings: Just 45 minutes south of Las Vegas, paved highways all the way in & through. Stop in at the Pioneer Saloon on your way in for a quick drink, snack, and visit; they'll appreciate the business. You can poke around some of the old mine ruins & tailings by driving on a well-graded dirt road to the N-NW of Goodsprings. Just PLEASE be sure to respect any "No Trespassing" signs! Some mines are posted as such. Most have been bulldozed or dynamited shut, including the Yellow Pine Mine, but you can explore the HUGE tailings piles and look at the remaining structures. Sharp eyes will be able to pick out the old Yellow Pine Mining Railroad right-of-way heading N-NW out of town, as well as near the junction of Hwy 161 & the Goodsprings Highway.

    6. St Thomas: I believe since the level of Lake Mead has dropped, the foundations & ruins of the old settlement of St Thomas are visible again. Refer to a road atlas or map; located near Logandale, about 1 hour + driving distance N-NE of Las Vegas, just off I-15.

    7. Gold Butte: If you have at least a full day and a 4x4 or ATV, you can explore the old mines & structures scattered around Gold Butte, which is past Logandale & Bunkerville. VERY HOT in the summertime though! Lake Mead access possible in spots (or used to be; I haven't been there in 15 years).

    8. Caliente & Pioche: Aaah, two of my favorite NV towns, located several hours NE of Shows in Las Vegas off US93. In the days of steam locomotives, the Union Pacific maintained a roundhouse & turntable with extensive maintenance facilities in Caliente, and just behind the roundhouse ruins is the old right-of-way grade for the UP branch to Pioche, which served the mines there; since the rails were finally lifted in 1985, most of the old railroad bridges are still in place (but much of the grade is now on private property & fenced). The old UP passenger station is still there, and worthy of looking around. The local businesses will appreciate your fuel & food purchases. There is also a very good burger joint there, we LOVE stopping there for a bite to eat whenever we pass through.

    Pioche is a hidden gem; I could spend hours & pages upon pages describing the wonderful people, sights, mines, and other items of interest we've experienced there. I simply love Pioche & its residents! It's a living ghost town, so be respectful of private property and "No Trespassing" signs. LOTS to see & explore here!! I'll save a detailed description of my many many trips here for another thread, which will NOT be 56K-friendly!

    9. Ely: About 4 hours' drive NE of Las Vegas on US93. WOW; although we would love to retire to the Pioche area, we are most likely to relocate here to Ely when we retire in 10-13 years. FANTASTIC people here, very conservative & friendly, lots of veterans & military retirees. LOTS of items of historic interest to see & explore. The Nevada Northern Railroad (aka "The Ghost Train") offers daily excursions and still has ALL of its original maintenance facilities intact & available for walking tours. You can head NW along Hwy 50 to Ruth, and up to the edge of a working open-pit copper mine, which has many neat static displays of historic mining equipment. Or head NE out of town to see the old High Line on the NNRR that dropped the copper ore into the huge mill facilities. The NNRR right-of-way still has ties & rails in place, and heads all the way north to Wells, NV, to connect with the Union Pacific line there (formerly Central Pacific, then Southern Pacific). To the East along Hwys 50 & 6 is the old mining district of Osceola, one of my favorites to explore....it actually features junipers & small pine trees, a nice change from the hot desert!

    I could go on for hours about the great things to see & explore in Ely, but I'll save it for another time.

    10. Beatty: Now we're on the western side of Nevada, along the border with California, off US95. About 2 hours' drive NW of Las Vegas. Just to the west of Beatty is the fabled ghost town of Rhyolite (and Bullfrog). Unfortunately, many of the old famous mines are being either covered up or "daylighted" by the currently-operating gold mines in the area. The Carrara marble mines & old gravity-powered incline railroad are just south of Beatty. Several old mining camps are also located near Beatty, as are many many old mines. The old railroad grades for the Las Vegas & Tonopah RR (my personal fave), the Tonopah & Tidewater RR, as well as the Bullfrog Goldfield RR are all located in & around Beatty and most are able to be explored. Be sure to top off your fuel tank & grab a snack from one of the local businesses there; they'll appreciate it.

    11. Death Valley: Without a doubt, worthy of the time taken to visit. Allow yourself at least ONE FULL DAY to see the minimum; 2 or 3 full days are necessary to truly see the full beauty & wonders of this National Park. Overnight stays are made easy with advance bookings at the Furnace Creek Ranch, or motels in Tonopah or Beatty (if I missed any, I apologize in advance). I don't need to waste anyone's time here explaining all there is to see here; but WOW, well worth the visit!!! The best time, IMHO, is in late March when the wildflowers are blooming; when I took my parents there in March 2004, the whole park was covered in all different varieties of wildflowers...it was beautiful (and cooler)!

    12. Goldfield: About an hour north of Beatty on US95. WOW! A true living ghost town, with tremendous mining areas & ruins, as well as extant old structures. Well worth the visit!! Very friendly residents, from my experiences anyway...

    13. Tonopah: An hour north of Goldfield on US95. Like Goldfield, WOW! LOTS of mining history & historic buildings/structures worthy of exploration, as well as an interesting mining museum & display. Lots of motels & places to stay here. Tonopah is a good gateway for extensive exploration trips (Berlin, Belmont, Candelaria, Silver Peak, Darwin, Panamints, et al...).

    -------------------------------

    If I've left any others out, please add to the list! I'm just going off of memory here, I don't even have a map in front of me...

    Hope this helps...there is soooo much more to Vegas & its surroundings than the casinos & the Strip (blech!).

    For the more adventurous, there is a cornucopia of 4x4 trails, old mines & ghost towns, and more just off of I-15 over the border in California, especially in & around the Mojave Preserve. There is even an old open-pit mine (the Colosseum Mine) at the far north end of the Mojave National Preserve, that is visible from your airliner when taking off from the Las Vegas airport (I've spotted it many times!), as long as you take off to the West.
    How is the terrain getting to the Arden Plaster Mines? I'm a relative novice with 4x4 stuff, would it be better to just hike it?
    Last edited by DarrellBray; 10-07-2010 at 03:20 PM.

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