2017 Nevada-Mojave Trip


Part TWo: More great scenery and historic sites!

You can click on any of the photos or links in the article to see more photos or videos of each site...

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The craggy, colorful mountain ridge is part of the Gabbs Valley Range. I shot some brief aerial video here with my Mavic Pro drone. I had to cut the flight short because the screen went dark on my iPhone, possibly due to the hot weather.

Click here to see video of Sawtooth Ridge, NV.

Gabbs, NV

This tiny, isolated town in central Nevada is home to a large brucite mine, which claims to be the oldest continuously operating mine in the state.

I stopped briefly to get a couple photos of the facilities

while I was there.

Downeyville, NV

This ghost town site is just north of Gabbs. Downeyville was named after the four Downey brothers who first discovered silver and lead ore here. By 1878 the town had a population of at least 200 people. The Downeyville Mine remained in production until 1901, and the post office closed in October of that year. Only a few scattered, crumbling stone walls are foundations remain.

I spotted this old building on what is now the Yomba Shoshone Indian reservation in the Reese River Valley.

Hess Ranch, NV

I first visited this historic pioneer ranch in 2015, and got extensive photos of the various buildings at that time. This year I shot some fantastic aerial video.

The ranch was originally owned by the Hess family, and there are several adobe structures dating to that time. The large main house was built of brick in 1910 when the ranch was owned by the Walsh family. This house is two stories high and has sixteen rooms.

Click here to see video of Hess Ranch, NV.

Above: Megaweapon takes a break somewhere north of the Hess Ranch.

Petersons Mill, NV

Petersons Mill is in the Smith Valley, north of Highway 50. There is a spring at the site, which is undoubtably why the mill was built there rather than on a hillside. I haven’t found any history for the mill, but it most likely served the mines in the nearby New Pass Range. Currently it is a watering hole for cattle, and also attracts wild horses. There is a single stone building, sans roof. The mill itself was a very small structure which is now just a pile of wooden debris close to the spring.

Below: Wild horses leaving the area after my arrival.

New Pass Mine and Mill, NV

Gold was first discovered here in 1865 and mining began the following year. The area went through a long cycle of booms and busts and intermittent activity. Over the years three different mills were built, the largest and most recent in 1930.

I arrived here well past sunset and it was already getting pretty dark, so I wasn’t able to get many photos. I had considered spending the night here, but noticed that at least one or two buildings seemed to be inhabited. Although I hadn’t seen any “no trespassing” signs, I wasn’t sure if my presence would be welcomed here. So I decided to move on. I hope to come back here again someday during daylight hours.

On the western shore I found the remains of stone buildings, apparently from an early salt works.

Below: After making my way back to the highway, I found this Great Basin rattlesnake warming himself on the road. I chased him out of the road so he wouldn’t get run over.

Go to the next page to read more about my 2017 Nevada/Mojave trip:

Nevada Trip 2017 Part Three

Coming up:  The McCoy Mine, Home Station Well, Stokes Castle, Ruby Hill mines, and more as the adventure continues!

Skip to:   Part One   Part Two   Part Three   Part Four   Part Five 

Note to modelers:

Many of the structures I’ve photographed would make great subjects for dioramas, or for your model railroad. It is my hope that these photos can be a useful reference resource. If you need larger, higher resolution images, just let me know. Also, in some cases I have additional detail photos that have not been posted online.

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