Press "Enter" to skip to content

Tag: lead mine

Searching for the Scallywag | Missing Death Valley #3

I slept soundly at the head of Ashford Canyon, two days of driving and hiking finally catching up to my aging body. Knowing that I'd have another long hike - and steep climb - ahead of me for the day, I spent a few minutes around camp, soaking in the sunrise and enjoying the shade that I knew I'd long for as the day went on. With the Tacoma still cool in the shade, a little glow on the Owlsheads, just as the sun is cresting the horizon. As I was eating my breakfast, I spotted this little guy near…

5 Comments

One Dark Mile | Montana #4

After climbing into our tents to escape the oncoming storm, wind gusts and rain continued in fits and spurts for the next several hours. Even with my tent now tied down, a stronger-than-normal gust lifted it - with me inside - six inches, a situation I was forced to remedy during a lull in the storm. Thankfully however, by midnight, things had significantly calmed down. Winds were in the much-more-reasonable 5mph range, and only intermittent sprinkles fell on our flies. This allowed everything to dry out reasonably well by morning - each of us glad that we weren't putting our…

6 Comments

Weather Turns | Montana #3

After a long camp fire, sleep came easy on the edge of the field, 8,000 feet in the Flint Creek Range. And, with Mike @Digiratus and Zane @Speedytech7 tucked into the trees, there was plenty of time for me to send the flying camera up into the sky for an early morning flight before either of them got wise to my shenanigans. Turns out the meadow in which I'd taken up residence was a little more interesting than it looked from ground level. Fred Burr Lake was glassy as I searched for signs of fellow campers. I found none. Back…

4 Comments

Crowds | Joshua Tree #2

After a very pleasant night - temps in the low 40s °F, only a slight breeze - on the southern edge of Pinto Basin, I was up bright and early to make the 12-mile drive back to the intersection of Pinto Basin, Old Dale, and Black Eagle Mine Roads. I'd gotten out of camp just before sunset, knowing that I had a full day ahead, and knowing - even if I didn't admit it to myself - that each of my dozen or so stops would take longer than I imagined. As I sped across Pinto Valley, the sun crested…

9 Comments

Better to be Lucky | Left, Again #1

With the Tacoma stored in Las Vegas and a 6:00am flight, we headed out the door a little after 4:00am for a 45-minute light rail ride to the airport. In high spirits - the trip south would only take two-and-a-half hours - our discussion focused on what hike we should tackle when we arrived in Death Valley a few minutes after lunchtime. Train tickets purchased, we headed to the platform to wait for the next train. Unfortunately, we'd neglected to research when the trains started running, and only as we were waiting did we discover that the first train wouldn't…

6 Comments

Tramways and Waterfalls, Cascading Down Canyons | Inyo East #2

Nestled into the mouth of an unnamed canyon of the eastern Inyo Mountains, sleep came quickly after climbing into the tent a little after 8:00pm. For five hours, everything was great - temperatures were perfect, in the low 40s °F, a gentle breeze cascaded down the canyon, and clear skies eliminated any anxiety about putting the tent away wet in the morning. Then, as if to remind us that conditions should never be taken for granted in the desert, the wind picked up. As though a switch had been flipped, gusts up to 40mph seemed to appear out of nowhere.…

7 Comments

Into the Inyo | Inyo East #1

We wrapped up our long drive south as we turned onto CA-168 from Big Pine. My plan - crazy as it seems now - had been to get all the way to our first trailhead prior to calling it a day, but given that it was already 3:00am and the trip over North Pass and into Saline Valley would take another 90 minutes, it seemed prudent to find camp rather than risk needing to do so in the much colder elevations should the pass be... impassable. There was no getting up at sunrise. Nestled in a small side canyon and…

22 Comments

Big Mines and Squeeze Slots | Highway Hikes #2

It was shortly after 2:00pm when I arrived at the trailhead for my next destination. Literally parked along the shoulder of CA-190, anyone driving by might surely wonder, "why is a person parked here?" I know I was wondering why a white Tacoma was parked in the same spot, almost exactly one year earlier. Like the time of day, to the casual observer, there's nothing remotely remarkable about this place - though with a little knowledge, both the time and place become noteworthy. The time, because I had only a little over two hours - before sunset - to complete…

6 Comments

Mines of the Funeral Mountains | Loose Ends #1

I don't know whether it's an "oh, duh!" moment, or "can you believe it?" situation, but less than two weeks after returning from our Death Valley trip along the Nadeau Trail, we were headed back for more! I was jazzed, and - a little surprisingly to me - so was @mrs.turbodb! This time, the land area we'd cover would be larger than the last, with our plan to see several places that we've meant to visit over the last few years but that we've never gotten to - largely because there's only so much you can see on a given…

2 Comments

A Most Scenic Destination and Unexpected Residents | Nadeau #3

It was still a little before 2:00pm when we started back down the canyon towards the last segment of the Nadeau Trail - the segment that would lead us to the Modoc Mine. This mine was the reason that Remi Nadeau had built this trail - the ore from this area valuable enough to warrant the construction of a road that shaved precious miles off of the previous routes. In April 1875, a new silver bonanza was set off on the eastern slope of the Argus Range overlooking Panamint Valley. Prospector B. E. Ball discovered there an enormous lode assaying…

8 Comments