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Monday, April 4, 2016

Jackass Flat, Saline Range, DVNP - "two vehicles flagged us down"

 After fuel in Big Pine we drove east on CA 168 and turned right on to Death Valley Road.
 And after a few miles right again on the Saline/Waucoba Road
 And then left toward Cowhorn Valley.
 Where we stopped to visit a sinkhole. Always makes me nervous walking and driving around sinkholes. Is there another one lurking below?
 We had a pleasant surprise shortly after we returned to the Saline Valley Road and two vehicles flagged us down. Explorer Rebekah and her family were driving north after camping at the hot springs where she was photographed holding a sign that read, "Mr. Johnson, I am here and you are not." The next day Mr. Johnson photographed her holding the same sign but this time he was there.
 We continued to the junction of Opal and Marble Canyons where we turned left and drove East down Marble.
 The road down Marble was a bit rocky at times but did not require 4x4.
 The road through Jackass Canyon did.
 We drove South across Jackass Flats.
And finally arrived at the Morning Star Mine cabin.
The interior was tidy and livable except for the right front corner where mice had started to nest.
We drove back down to a junction on the flats and set up camp. Jan's phone with AT&T had cell service with data. No joy with my T-Mobile phone.
For three days we ate farm fresh eggs for breakfast provided by Rebekah's family who maintain a small chicken farm.
After breakfast I contemplated a hike to something I found on GoogleEarth a few months ago. The curiosity was about three miles away and there was a spirited debate in my brain between Curious and Lazy.
Later in the day after lunch Curious won out. Bosco and I started hiking up and down a series of hills toward our objective.
Almost there.
Evidence that the playa of this small dry lake was wet sometime during the winter.
A panorama of the area.
The sun was setting as we started back to camp.
A Four Wheel Camper and a hot meal awaits far in the distance.
Dawn on Jackass Flats.
Our route to the next cabin took us North and then East through a short canyon down to the Eastern section of Jackass Flats.
We turned South and drove across the flats.
The Micadon Mine cabin.
Clever solution to a rodent problem on the far wall.
Looking North when something caught my eye.
Gas burner shower head? Jan thought that was very clever.
Our route back to Jackass Canyon.
The narrows of Jackass Canyon below.
Working our way down Jackass Canyon and on to our next destination.


  1. Hi -- this is a great web site! I do have a question -- where did you get the name "Morning Star Mine cabin" for that cabin at the end of Jackass Flats?

    1. I stumbled across the name while researching the area. It was one of those flow of the clicks discoveries. Cheers.

    2. Very cool! I've known of these cabins for years, but have yet to make the drive. Also, yours are the only photos I've seen from ground level. Hope to visit in March! Thanks for sharing. - Jim

    3. Don't think the area has many visitors because the narrows in Jackass Canyon looks more difficult than it is. As with most cabins I would have liked to seen them a couple of decades earlier. Thanks for posting Jim.

  2. I entirely meant to arrive thru Jackass Flats this past week but did not, instead crawled to the top of those very rugose hills west toward Waucoba. what a view, could see a small portion of JAF and the Saline range and the Last Chance range and on up the alluvial fan of Eureka valley to the very north east corner of DV....

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  4. On the way to the Morning Star mine cabin if you go far enough up one of the side canyons you will find what is left of an old freight wagon under some pine trees, you will be on the right track to finding the illusive Micadon Mine.