Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Enamoured With Ghost Towns!

No doubt it is that nostalgic part of me that keeps me on a constant hunt for ghost towns, sometimes going back to the same ones over and over again. Though I like them all, I truly
prefer those that are not commercial, favoring them preserved rather than restored.

For whatever reasons, I enjoy the silence of these lost and lonely places and the nostaligia that overwhelms me as I walk their dusty streets. I just can't help but think of the people that once lived here, this place that was once lively and now sits empty and abandoned. What brought them here or were they just passing through on there way to yet another place? Did they make the fortunes for which they sought or was this town too, just another in a string of failures? Did outlaws roam these old and dusty streets. No doubt my imagination is sometimes more vivid than this town's actual past.

Last month saw me in Las Vegas - Sin City of the World!! Did I spend my days there enjoying the sounds of lively crowds and the ting, ting, ting of the slot machines? Did I spend my nights straining my neck in every direction gawking at the neon lights and adult Disney Land type pleasures? No. Every morning I hit the road in search of Nevada ghost towns, returning
to Las Vegas in the evening so dusty and exhausted I barely had the energy for dinner before falling into bed. And what a great state Nevada is for its ghost towns!!

I visited a few that I had already written about such as Rhyolite and Delamar. Rhyolite was everything I hoped for and then some, but Delamar was quite a disappointment. Though rich in history, this old place is very remote and I would recommend getting there only in a four wheel drive. Though I was glad that I went, I wasn't sure it was worth the long trip. Most of its buildings are gone. I learned from a local that many of these old structures have been taken apart, piece by piece, by treasure hunters looking for gold or other valuables hidden in the walls. Though I think treasure hunting is a great way to spend the day, I would be ashamed to know anyone who actually destroys history in their conquest for hidden treasure.

On the other hand, I found some new ghost towns that I had not yet written about -- Gold Point, Goldfield and Nelson. While Goldfield is often written about as one of the best ghost towns in Nevada and was certainly worth the trip, I felt that nearby Goldfield was even better. Here in this old town, that now supports a population of just about six people, many of the buildings have been preserved. Walking down its quiet and dusty street was like stepping back in time. The owner of the town now provides numerous events throughout the year and wedded couples to be can even have their ceremony in this historic place. A must visit for ghost towners in Nevada.

Another great find along my journey was Nelson, Nevada and Eldorado Canyon. Just east of Nelson is the Techatticup Mine with many restored buildings at its base. Having a rich and rebald past, the site has served as the set of several movies. An interesting tidbit that we picked up while there is that Eldorado Canyon is supposedly haunted by canine spirits. The locals call them the Helldogs of Eldorado Canyon. Yup, we've got a lot of ghost stories on the website, but this is a first for ghostly dogs. Don't miss Eldorado Canyon when you're in the Las Vegas area. Do you have a favorite ghost town that you would like to share? Let's hear it!!

In the meantime, here are a couple of great links to Nevada Ghost Towns:

CmdrMark's Ghost Towns
Ghost Town Gallery
Ghost Town Seekers
Nevada Ghost Towns

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