Living Ghost Towns
Step back in time to see old mining towns that make up a large part of the Southwest’s history. Many were largely abandoned or forgotten but today these tiny towns are some of the best out-of-the-way adventures you will find. Walk down wooden plank sidewalks, watch a shootout at high noon, and feed a wild burro!
Nelson is a remote ghost town founded in part by American Civil War deserters from both the North and South, who used the area to hide out from authorities. Not long after, gold was discovered and it turned into a prosperous mining town. You can still tour one if it’s long-abandoned mines, the Eldorado Canyon Mine. Is it haunted? You’ll have to find out for yourself! Visit the general store to hear stories of movies filmed in the area and see artifacts left behind. Just around the bend you will also be able see the beautiful Colorado River and take pictures from its banks.
Follow famous Route 66 to a town where cowboys roam the street, re-enacting high-noon shoot outs. Wild burros, descendants of those left behind by gold miners, roam the streets begging for carrots. Visit the town’s haunted hotel where famed actors Clark Gable and Carol Lombard honeymooned.
From Oatman ride the Joshua Tree Highway and catch a glimpse of a wood pecker, a Golden Eagle, or maybe a desert tortoise among the open miles of Joshua Trees. You will find this stretch of highway quiet and peaceful, giving you a great chance to enjoy your surroundings.
Two miles from the Nevada/California border sits Nipton, an interesting old mining camp. Stop in the Nipton Trading Post & Whistle Stop Cafe for a cold beverage before heading back to the lights of Las Vegas, or stay the night in a room at the tiny Hotel Nipton or a replica miner's cabin. Sit around the campfire and listen to the whistle as a train rumbles through camp, adding to the ambience and old time feel.
We suggest calling ahead to make sure the restaurant will be open.
Pioneer Saloon at Goodsprings, NV
Goodsprings is a living ghost town which boasts one of the nation’s oldest stamped-metal buildings still standing, The Pioneer Saloon. Bullet holes in the walls still remain from a real shoot out in the early 1900’s over a poker game. It is also where Clark Gable sat, waiting three days for news of his bride, Carole Lombard, when her plane crashed just outside Mt. Potosi. Legend has it that their ghosts still wander through town.
For your convenience, we have provided you with the helpful links below to find deals on travel and hotel reservations, and to help you find further information on the areas you’ll be seeing on your tour.