Trails to Trudge: Big Horn Mine

Trails to Trudge is a ongoing series of posts from my hiking/camping adventures since the early weeks of 2018.  Each post will focus on a location I spent time at as well as details about what we did (ie parking, trail quality and tips).  Check out my first post below, on Big Horn Mine…

rmkv2+stshydyr4vx6nwkw      It was early February of this last year, 2018 when Tyler and I decided to take the trek up to Big Horn Mine.  We had heard and seen pictures of it but we needed to make the journey for ourselves.  We knew where to go and had an actual address, but as always, things were slightly more complicated.  As we were driving, we started to descend a winding mountain road.  The GPS told me to make a left in a couple miles so I kept my eyes peeled for the turn-out.  I drove right by it. I flipped a bitch to get back to the turn only to find out that the road we needed to take was a service road (ie covered in gravel, loose rocks, and “forest debris”).  Once we got through Mr.Toad’s Wild Ride, the parking lot was right across the street…


The hike itself is relatively easy and straightforward.  It’s uphill the entire time but at only four miles, it’s a good workout.  All in all, including the mine exploration, we spent about two and a half hours cruising around.  Keep scrolling to check out my visual interpretation of the hike…

The beginning
views from the trail


Report: no actual candy found here…
…only this


After slowly circling the mountainside, we turned a corner to a path that wasn’t quite paved… more so well trodden. The dirt was packed so tight beneath our feet that it must have been in use since the 1890’s.  When I looked up, I realized we were making our ascent up to the mine…

Walking up…
BIg Horn Mine

Once inside, you feel the history behind the mine but you also can’t help but feel the overwhelming sense of nature exacting it’s revenge upon industrialization.  The roof is missing, entire walls and exposed beams lead straight off of cliffs, splintered wood litters the ground, everything is in disarray.  The mine itself is flooded and smells of rot and dirty water but having said all of that…

It’s really fucking cool.  The view from the main room is stunning and the missing walls make it all easier to see the view.  The climb up to the actual mine goes through the splintering roof which is tons of fun (if you’re careful) and going into the mine was thrilling.  When I walked in I felt the claustrophobia right away but we took out our headlamps and took it one step at a time until we couldn’t go any further.  Check out scenes from the mine below…

The Main Room


climbing up to the mine
“speak, friend, and enter”
into the mine…
“delving deeper and darker…”
we found an opening…
then decided to gtfo!
view from the mine
and we out…

…on to the Mojave National Preserve next week…

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