2018 Nevada-Mojave Trip


Part five: Another adventure comes to an end!

Above: A massive array of mirrors focuses sunlight on the central tower at a solar power plant near Tonopah, NV.

Below: The waste rock pile at a former mine in Tonopah is streaked with colorful minerals.

Click on any of the photos or links in the article below to see more photos of each site...

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Lambertucci Roma Ranch, NV

I’ve driven by this site many times over the years but never visited it until now. From the highway, I could only see two large, corrugated metal buildings in the distance. Due to their location near Tonopah, I assumed they were some kind of mine or mill structures. Once I got up close, I found that they were barns. I also found many other, older, structures that could not be seen from the highway.

Vincenzo Lambertucci bought a small ranch near Tonopah in 1911, which became the Lambertucci Roma Ranch. The area today is dry, barren desert without any apparent source of water. For this reason I was quite surprised that a ranch had ever existed here, especially one so large. But according to documents provided by the Central Nevada Historical Society, Vincenzo and Dominico Lambertucci had an agreement with the Tonopah Extension Mining Company, giving them rights to use excess water pumped from the mines.

There are numerous structures and ruins at this site. Many of the structures are quite interesting and unusual. I wasn’t able to shoot enough good footage for a video of the ranch, so I plan to return there next year and try again.

Above: Undated, early photo of the Lambertucci Roma Ranch. Many of the buildings in this photo still exist in various stages of decay.

Below: The ranch buildings as they look in 2018. The large, rusty corrugated metal building was some kind of barn.

Above: The dark, sheetmetal-covered building at right was the blacksmith’s shop. I’m not sure what purpose was served by the small concrete building.

Below: The ranch mainly raised chickens and hogs. This was one of the original stone barns.

Above: Another stone barn is in ruins.

Below: At the west end of the site are several small structures and ruins. I didn’t have time to examine these up close.

Above: The ruins of a metal chicken coop at lower left. In the background is a large barn from a later period of the ranch, possibly dating to the 1950s or ‘60s. Another, even larger, barn from the same period is located just east of the original ranch structures.

Below: This Great Horned Owl was watching me from the rafters of the corrugated metal barn.

Above: The largest structure is this impressive metal barn located just east of the original ranch structures.

Below: The large barn was a later addition to the ranch, and was built near the entrance to the site.

Above: A view of Megaweapon and a small shed, seen through the windows of the large barn.

Left: Another Great Horned Owl was in this barn.

Below: Interesting rock formations at the ranch.

After leaving the Lambertucci Roma Ranch, I began heading south...

Above: Several wild burros seen near Beatty, NV.

Below: A sidewinder rattlesnake that was warming itself on the road after sunset. I chased it off the pavement so it wouldn’t get run over.

In the Amargosa Valley I was treated to yet another breathtaking sunset.

Above: The Milky Way setting over the Mojave Desert.

I had hoped to camp at the Ibex Mine in the southern end of Death Valley, but found that the trail has been closed. So I continued south, eventually setting up camp in the Mojave desert near Granite Pass, CA.

On the last morning of the trip I only had time to do a little exploration and got a few photos of the desert before heading home.

That concludes my 2018 Nevada/Mojave trip. Thanks for following along!

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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