Saturday, January 22, 2011

Sights Around Tecopa

If you like offbeat destinations, you'll like Tecopa! Here is one of the town's landmarks, the abandoned U We laundromat, complete with matching rusted truck. That white stuff on the ground is minerals that have come more to the surface than usual after heavy rains this winter.

Down the road a piece, just before Shoshone, you'll find Dublin Gulch, where there are "caves" that miners and vagabonds lived in through the 1960s. Check out the stovepipes! Middens of rusted cans (mostly beer cans) are everywhere.

Here's a close-up of these dwellings dug out of the soft rock. You can tell they would be nice and cool during the hot summer months. Famous figures in the history of Death Valley spent time here, including Shorty Harris and the Ashford brothers.

For unspoiled natural beauty, there are hiking trails behind China Date Ranch that go way back into the hills. The Armagosa River is nearby. On our hike, we were followed by the calls of Phainopepla, a species of crested, silky flycatcher that thrives on desert mistletoe--which is abundant in the area's mesquite brushlands, below.