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Sunday, January 19, 2014

East of Green Mountain Lake - "rough old road that dropped into the canyon"

Dawn east of Green Mountain Lake. The small lake where we shot the reflection photos the day before did not have a name. The mine next to it was called the Green Mountain Mine because of the green stone mined at the quarry. Green Mountain Lake seemed logical.
Clark and Jo Ann watching the sun rise.
After breakfast we decided to follow a faint road track and see where it led.
In about 400 yards we discovered this collection of motorcycle parts.
NGK spark plugs were first sold in the US in the 1960's. The Barstow to Vegas race began in the 1960's. Could these parts and tools be artifacts from the race? How many years have the ViceGrips been waiting to be used after their owner placed them on the rock?
The 1974 BTV "Tie" between Bakken and Mayes.
We continued hiking, following the old road to the east.
 After another half mile we found this old "flimsy" gas can. Flimsies were used to carry gasoline before WWII but during the war both the US and British armies began to use "Jerry" cans after seeing their use by the German Wehrmacht.
After that we came across several oil cans and started to think that the road was going to lead to something.
Hiking another half mile and we discovered this rock shelter and a few prospect holes.
Jo Ann found some broken Johnson Brothers tableware.
Remains of an old cot frame.
An old sardine can.
One of the prospect holes. According to this was part of the Condor Group of claims. First recorded claim was in 1945 and the main commodity reported was copper although we found evidence of turquoise mining. Elmo Proctor's name surfaced in the claim report. He operated a service station at the south end of East Cronese Lake from the 1920's to 40's.
 Clark left us and hiked back to camp because he and Jan were headed for home.
Jo Ann and I continued east following a rough old road that dropped into the canyon ahead. We found this old tortoise shell alongside the road.
At the end of the canyon there was an old claim monument.
The claim papers were still inside the monument, although these documents would probably be unreadable.
We scanned around the first monument hoping to find another. Jo Ann spotted the next one, of what turned out to be four, to the north. It was the direction we were headed.
We began to see
more evidence
of prospecting
but never found another camp.
 No mystery about where this balloon came from considering that we were only a few miles south of Fort Irwin. It is amazing how many mylar balloons we find in the desert.
Another tortoise shell.
Looking NE with Kingston Range far in the distance.
We turned west with the intent to circle back to our camp.
Neither one of us knew what to make of this metal number tag glued to a rock laying in the wash.
I placed it on top of a nearby rock so it would be easier to find in the future.
We continued hiking west headed for the Midway Green Quarry.
The sun had set when we reached the quarry. From there it was only about a mile back to camp.
At the conclusion of our five mile hike the camp was just as we had left it, sans Jan and Clark.
Wanting to camp at another location we drove the two miles back to Green Mountain Lake. I demonstrated my laziness by leaving the camper popped up during our relocation. Tom Hannigan at FWC once told me how he had driven down the highway with the top up for several miles after a trade show. I figured that two miles at 10 MPH would be much less stress than Tom's freeway test and our move proved to be uneventful.
Jo Ann pitched her tent away from the camper to distance herself from my snoring. Part of our purpose in moving camp was to get close enough to the lake so we might see some wildlife coming in for water. Later after dinner two coyotes came to the lake about 200 yards away from camp and made their presence known with some very impressive howling. Wanting to join the carnivore duet I roared like a bear. The addition of the ursine voice concluded the coyote concert.

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