20 January 2009

The Vulture Mine...

As if the name isn't kind of foreboding enough...there's the ghost town left behind.

Rich and I got up mighty early and jumped in the Titan on Monday for a trip down to Wikenburg...a little town about an hour and a half away from our perch up on the mountain...which means it was much warmer than our 25 degree morning up here.

After driving through the BLM land surrounding the old Vulture Mine area, we were both a little more than excited about the area. Putting it plainly, it is beautiful out there. There are mountains and peaks lush with green (I know...Arizona, weird...but it's this time of year I would think) and covered with bushes and some of the most amazing saguaros I've ever even seen in Arizona. Since this is BLM land, it also means that you can camp. For absolutely free. Seeing as it's so warm down there, this may be close to the perfect time of year to visit (can you tell what I'm angling for now? Giggle)

The old Vulture Mine was once the location of a thriving town of 5,000...which also housed the first house in Wikenburg...complete with large pipe's sticking out of the wall. These were used to shoot out of in case you were being attacked, and if they reached in the pipes without getting shot? Well then, you just cut their hands off.

of course.

This, at least, was the story told to us by the fine gentleman who was manning the desk area...and who was there to explain the maps, accept our entry money (it is $10 per person to get into the ghost town...but totally worth it, as it is wonderfully preserved, they allow you to walk all over...and I personally got more than 100 photos) and who also requested that since Rich is a professional photographer that he please send a disk back of the photos he took in case they wanted to use them in advertising (with plenty of recognition on his part, of course)

This place is still a veritable gold mine for picture opportunities and just the strolling around fun. There are buildings all around, and tons of the original things still left in the buildings. Some of these places seem as if they're still just falling down around you, and yet you can stroll right in if you're brave enough to walk on the old floors. It actually felt a little strange seeing as most of the places we've been are either No Trespassing zones, or there isn't much left, or you can't get anywhere near the inside...

I was totally in love with all the old cans and jugs that were still sporting their original paper labels...


There's also ton's of mining machinery left as well...which isn't usually my thing, but it was all so amazing and beautiful.

We also met another couple wandering around out there, and met back at the cars (when Rich and I went back for water...we totally forgot to carry with us...rookie mistake!) where we all stood and laughed and talked for some time. They've been here about a year longer than Rich and are loving exploring the area, they are new to hiking and are enjoying it, they are Mac users, and they are totally fun people who we made promise to call us when they're in the area next and we would take them all around...

We had big plans to hike back out to another area, but both felt a little hot and dehydrated. I'd also been sneezing all day...and I'm thinking I actually feel a little under the weather. Perhaps not getting a fantastic night's sleep the night before (and the night before that) has something to do with it...whatever the case, I'm now wondering if it would be OK to try to go to the gym...since I have my momentum.

Oh wait...before all that.

We had an amazing day!

(more of my favorite shots of the day over at Shutter Groupie)


megan said...

this looks super duper cool! maybe we can go back before it gets too hot!

Felicia said...

I'm totally digging this place!


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