Saturday, February 25, 2017

Back Roads and Abandoned Mines

Saturday, February, 25, 2017

My location:  Eight miles West of Bouse, Arizona just off Plomosa Drive

It was rather cool last night.  Got down to the upper thirties, but Yuma and I were comfortable under our sleeping bags over our covers. 

We took our walk and then had a leisurely breakfast.  At about eleven, we decided to drive down to Bouse and take a right on hwy 72 and drive the twenty miles to see if we could find some gas in the small towns near I-10.   The gas gauge  indicates a little over an eighth of a tank near the red zone.

I guess I didn’t realize how small they were.  I should have known that towns with names like Bush Pit, Vicksburg Junction, Desert Wells and Pioneer would be too small to have a gas station.   Here’s the KOFA Café at Vicksburg Junction.  It is a beautiful old building of the western style, but out of business.


Decided to take I-10 West twenty miles to Quartzsite where I should have gone  in the first place. 

It was a nice drive, but didn’t like the drama of not knowing if I had enough gas to get there.  Had a five gallon gas can full of gas, but it was sitting next to the RV.  Not very bright.

Well, we got gas and drove around Quartzsite a little bit, but wasn’t interested in anything, so we headed back towards Plomosa Drive and home.  As we got close to the KOFA  Mountains, I saw a dirt road leading up into the mountains and decided to do a little Jeepin’.

If you have ever driven past the long-term sites and into the mountains on Plomosa Drive heading toward Bouse, you have seen this road going up a steep hill to the right of the blacktop.


Up we went towards the sky, wondering what was on the other side.


We see beautiful mountains off in the distance.


We drive into them and every so often stop to look around and take photos.  It is beautiful and quiet back in here.  I take a photo of Yuma and he takes one of me.




We soon start running into old abandoned mines along the mountain sides.



Looks like the foundation to a home or building and across the way was another mine with slabs everywhere.  This must have been a big operation.


I just couldn’t stop taking pictures of everything around me.  I wish I could make these photos show you what my eye sees, but just can’t.



There is Bouse in the desert below off in the distance.  Not wanting to turn around, I just keep following the dirt road hoping it will end up somewhere near Bouse. 


We’re tired of bumping around and Yuma wants to go home.  We follow this road for another six grueling miles through rocks, washes and bushes wondering if we would ever get out.  I could see Bouse at times, but the bushes in the desert kept me in the dark most of the time.


Finally, I spot an ATV coming out of the bushes ahead and I run him down.  Turns out to be some Bouse residents showing an Aunt from Michigan the desert country.

Asked him if I was close to Bouse.  With a laugh, he said I was only about a mile and to keep following the road. 


Never lost, but I was wondering when it would ever end.  Soon, the trail turns into a nice flat dirt road and then to the blacktop. 


Didn’t expect such a long drive on the back roads, but it was beautiful.  My resistance to turning around and backtracking keeps getting me in hot water.

See you later.


  1. Luckily, you didn't really get in hot water. 😊 Such beautiful scenery around Bouce. There were a lot of old mines around there. I'm glad neither for you fell in one! Just wonder why you and Yuma took pictures of each other's backsides?? ha,ha Really spectacular of the Kofa Mountains!

    1. There was one that was so deep I couldn't see the bottom. I put Yuma on a leash when we got close. Our backsides are our best sides.

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  3. I think you are trying to get into hot water! ha ha, love your humour. Yuma is one smart dog!

  4. Beautiful pictures. I do not know how many times over the years Tom and I have said, we will just go over one more hill or around one more curve. Sometimes we have found the end, like you did today, and sometimes we have made the long trek back. Either way it is an adventure. You and Yuma stay safe.

    1. Thank you. It was a long trail, but we did have fun.

  5. My goodness! You keep having adventures!

    1. Hopefully, today is a nice easy day that doesn't wear us out. Lying in the lounger all day would be nice.

  6. I like this area much better than the Badlands - so much green to add contrast to the browns and of coarse the deep blue sky. The ocotillo and brittle bush will soon burst into bloom and make everything even more colorful.

    1. It is a lot greener this year thanks to the wet winter. I think you mentioned last year about the blooms in the Mohave Desert. Maybe this year I will make it. I hadn't noticed the green grass on the ground in my pictures till you mentioned green and I went back and looked.

  7. You have trained Yuma well, he takes wonderful pictures.
    Another adventure filled day with some amazing scenery.

    1. Thank you. Turned out to be another adventure. Beautiful in the KOFA Mountains.

  8. All the old mining claims make for a lot of interesting exploring and I am always amazed at how the old timers dug and picked their way through solid rock day after day and especially in the scorching summer's heat.