De Ja Vu?
My son invited me to camp with him and a group of off road enthusiasts. About seventeen people showed up and four or five RV trailers. This OHV park is a huge piece of the Mojave desert wilderness known as Wagon Wheel in the BLM wilderness in Spangler Hills. It is about 30 miles South of Ridgecrest, CA.
GPS: 35°33′57″N 117°30′55″W
On Monday after Christmas, we gathered around and decided to take our reindeer out for a spin to Randsburg and back. An OHV trip of about 40 miles plus or minus. This we did, in spite of the 47F temperatures and zooming along at 40+ MPH.
Randsburg is self proclaimed to be the worlds only "Living" Ghost Town. I guess they never heard of the "oxymoron" there, as well.
Notice how they have recreated the ambiance of a "Ghost" town with a fluorescent "Open" sign and a poor paint job. I did get an authentic dime bottle of "Black" Cherry soda cirica 2015 and a two authentic nickel bags of peanuts for a paltry sum of $4.73. A nice mid-day snack for sure but didn't make me nostalgic, that's for sure.
We hitched up our 9 dirt bikes and a quadzilla and an RZR (also four wheeled) and strutted on in this authentic saloon to have a burger with frys (that's how they spelled fries back in the day) and a shot of Sasperilla. The White House Saloon, also well decorated by fluorescents from the 21st sentury, er century and a fifty state flag of the USA. Of our group of eleven machines, four of the dirt bikes were ridden by two wives and two teenage gurls. Nobody arrived back in camp without making
a dash for the shower. A drawback of well traveled DIRT roads.
At least they didn't have any modern attachments save for the outdoor electric light with conduit running on the outside.
This wasn't open so I don't know if it actually was a working "INN" or not. Adorned with a bunch of anti ques that had some authenticity to them but someone forgot the space between anti and que on their sign. Who would buy an anti que anyways? or Why are they even against ques?
An old gas pump similar to one I actually used in my errant youthful days at our local family run store in Point Pleasant, CA. First, you pumped the glass bowl full of gas, then you gravity fed as many gallons as you wanted to buy, into your tank. The fish tank bowl had a measuring stick inside it with 1 gallon at the top and ten gallons at the bottom. If you only wanted five gallons, you would stop at the five gallon mark, go back inside the store and then pay for 5 gallons x 17.6 cents. Since
I did odd farm jobs for $1.25 (minimum wage then) per hour when I was 16, that 5 gallons cost me almost a full hour of work. It's strange and peculiar to me, that five gallons of gas still costs approximately an hour of work at the now minimum wage.
I was surprised that they didn't have a sign offering employment to dust their display items. Maybe the dust is part of the ambiance.
Old timey insulators on the top shelf, the kind used on old telegraph lines between railroad stations. In the real olden days, if the Indians wanted to mess with the Cowboys, they would cut the wire and then reattach the two ends with rawhide. So, if you were a cowboy trying to find and fix the break, you wouldn't be able to find it unless you were right underneath it. Who said Indians didn't have a sense of humor? As a kid, these insulators made great target practice as well. They
wouldn't break when hit but the bullet would ricochet off of it making all different kinds of whistling noises.
A "Radio Flyer" wagon from the olden days.
In spite of Randsburg's almost authenticity, it was still fun to have a destination that was somewhat peculiar and interesting to descend on with all of our obnoxious Off Highway Vehicles (OHVs). I have never, ever traveled that far in an OHV so a new experience, even for me. We crossed a couple of asphalt roads but the rest of the trip was over some really bone jarring, brain juggling, knarliest bumpy dusty dirt roads that you can ever imagine. Dirt roads that Disney Land would have charged
extra to travel over. An "E" ticket ride, so to speak.
All the above photos were taken with a Canon EOS 5D MKii camera body, a wide angle zoom: 24-105mm L IS 1:4 USM lens and a 100-400mm telephoto lens.