Friday, April 25, 2014

Keystone Mine Camp

Up Goler Canyon there lies a large mine camp. It was a gold mine, which is higher up on the mountain and was not visited on this trip in spring of 2014. This gold mine was originally developed by the famed Carl Mengel in his days in the region, but it was sold to the Monte Cristo Mines company in 1935 and renamed the Lotus Mine. It was worked on and off into the 80s, when most of the modern mines closed in south Death Valley. There were two arial tramways constructed, and there is a lot of cool junk lying around the site. Some of the rocks in this canyon are around 1.8 Billion years old. Just up the canyon is a very pretty pink rhyolite intrusion. 2016 UPDATE: Work is being done to reopen this mine. Someone is now on site most of the time.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Spring Break 2014 Overview

The entire report will be divided into individual sections, but this is an overview.

Beginning the trip, we drove over to Butte Valley via Goler Canyon from Searles Valley. We stopped at the Newman Cabin, Gold Spur cableway, Keystone Mine camp, and Mengel Pass. Once in Butte Valley, we hit all the cabins; starting with Stella's (also called Mengel's, Anderson's, and Greater View Cabin), then we went to Russel Camp. Unfortunately people were setting up camp there and we didn't lurk around and invade their space. Finally we went to Geologist Cabin at Anvil Spring. I was amazed at how rutted the road and parking at Geologist was; it suffered heavily from overuse and subsequent erosion. Anyway, the new and controversial outhouse is far enough away that it didn't impede views of the cabin and butte together, so we were able to enjoy the solitude of the lonesome stone cabin.