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Sunday, February 14, 2016

Near Tucki Mountain, DVNP - "with no bullet holes"

 We drove onto the broad drainage of Nemo Canyon looking to visit the Christmas Tree Mine cabin.
 I was curious to see if it was still standing. That question was quickly answered.
Although the outhouse was still in operation. Jan noted that it was a two-seater.
 Next it was on to Aguereberry Camp.
Pete's camp wasn't in very good shape. Jan noticed that someone had stolen the lucky horseshoe from above the front door of his cabin and in a another building the sheet-rock walls were broken and holed.
 Since we were close by, a walk over to the Cashier Mill seemed in order. Jan led the way taking the high trail.
 Jan, Jo Ann and Bosco are somewhere on top of the hill behind the mill. We all noticed that stabilization work had been performed on the mill and asked ourselves why it wasn't done on the Christmas Tree Cabin.
 Next we drove to a pull-out on the Emigrant Canyon Road and began a hike to another camp.
 Bosco out in front.
 Our first view of the camp.
We all dropped our packs and started to look around.
 A rare sight in the desert: a vehicle with no bullet holes.
 Looked like a post-WWII Pontiac.
 The interior of the cabin was spacious with bunk-beds and a separate bathroom with a tub.
 Two tanks on the hillside were supplied with water by pipes from a spring about 600 yards up the canyon.
 We discovered that the Pontiac had a flat-head straight eight, the most powerful engine Pontiac manufactured until the V-8 was introduced in the early 1950's.
 We hiked back to our vehicles and drove North on Emigrant Canyon Road to the access road for Telephone Canyon and the Tucki Mine.
 Crossing the broad expanse of Emigrant Wash.
 Eventually the route turned South into the canyon.
 The upper elevations of the canyon changed dramatically as evening fell. While I was taking this photograph Jo Ann exclaimed to Jan, who was riding with her, "What is a panel truck doing way up this canyon?" Jan informed Jo Ann that the panel truck was actually my truck and camper. Jo Ann replied, "Maybe this canyon should be named Hallucination Canyon."
 We set up camp on a saddle at the top of the canyon and prepared dinner as the last rays of the day disappeared into the night sky.
 Dawn over Death Valley to the East.
 After breakfast we jumped in Jo Ann's Rubicon and drove to the top of the hill in the photo to begin our next hike.
 On top of the hill at the wilderness boundary. The road continues but is now closed.
 We hiked down the really steep 4x4 road to the flats below where we found this sign.
Two major errors on this sign. Scroll to the bottom of the page to see the errors. Jo Ann and I discussed why the sign was needed in the first place. You can see the cabin about 1000 yards away.
 Cabin in sight.
 Very yucky interior.
 The view from the cabin looking East back toward the sign.
 We hiked back to the Jeep, drove down the hill and then East to the Tucki Mine.
The interior of the cabin.
 Jo Ann found this inscription on one of the foundations.
 Something happened here that I promised not to reveal but it was darn funny. After recovering from the laughter we looked around the area a little more and then drove back to camp.
 Jo Ann found this dugout just a few yards from our campsite.
 After lunch we began our drive down the canyon back to pavement.
We stopped at the mouth of Telephone Canyon.
 And hiked up to Telephone Arch where Bosco and Jan posed for a photo. (Shouldn't it be named Telephone Bridge because it was created by flowing water?)
 After the short hike to the arch we returned to the vehicles and continued our drive out of the canyon.
 As we approached the mouth of the canyon day was turning to night.

We drove into the sunset leaving Death Valley National Park behind.

Errors on sign: Directions for latitude and longitude are reversed and once that is fixed, the longitude should be West. Should read: 36º28'03" North 117º06'22"West

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Tuber Canyon DVNP - "Bosco heard burros approaching"

 We made a right turn off of Wildrose Road and drove across Wildrose Wash toward Tuber Canyon.
 After a few miles we reached the mouth of Tuber Canyon.
 Another couple of miles found us reaching a large bench of gravel and a closed road to our right that was once a route to Jail Canyon.
I parked our truck on the bench, left Bosco with Jan and jumped in Jo Ann's Rubicon. We drove another couple miles leaving the main canyon below and climbing up a smaller canyon to reach, according to, the OB Joyful Mine.
After parking her Jeep Jo Ann was ready to explore the mine.
(photo credit: Jo Ann Ward)
She photographed me entering the mine.
Ore chute from an upper level.
Written with carbide lamps, perhaps.
Ladder to a stope above the adit we were in.
After 45 minutes we returned to daylight.
We began the drive back down the canyon.
Passed several collapsed cabins and an iron stove.
Time to return to our truck and find a place to camp.
We set up camp at the mouth of the canyon on the foundations of an old mining camp.
Found on the foundation at our campsite.
We prepared dinner and watched the sun set.
Later in the evening while we were watching the moon move toward the horizon Bosco heard burros approaching long before we did and gave them an aggressive greeting.
I set up the game camera thinking that this would be the night to photograph a passing burro but our only nocturnal visitor was a fox.
Early dawn on the Argus Range.
30 minutes later.
Far to the northwest we could see Mount Whitney behind the snow covered slopes of Lone Pine Peak.
After breakfast we drove back out to Wildrose Road.
And found road crews working to repair the road on a SATURDAY!