Ed and I took a small trip over to Nevada to check out an interesting little mine I had passed up before. I have visited some of the other mines in the district but overlooked this one in a small side canyon.
The Oro Copia (also known as the Dos Palmas) is an old mine in the heart of the Orocopia Mountains. It was discovered in 1892 by Edward Fish, his son G. B. Fish and C. O. Barker (of Joshua Tree dam fame). The ore body was reported to be quite rich with gold and they quickly erected a two-stamp mill down at Dos Palmas Spring.
Over the weekend, I visited the fairly remote Curtis Canyon Cabin. I found Boxcar and Ed already there and were busy cleaning and restoring the cabin to a habitable condition.
The narrow, one man cabin was built by Frank Curtis in 1958 and he used it for nearly 30 years. Up on the hill behind the cabin is a small mine, of which not much remains, except an unstable 40′ inclined shaft. I’m guessing not much ever came of the mine, but Frank chose a beautiful spot to have his cabin. It makes a great place to visit today.
This site was an amazing find for us and a place I had really been looking forward to explore. I had known about the mine for some time and, as is the usual case lately, and I just needed the time and some people to come with me underground. I was able to talk Bill and Dan into a side trip scouting the area at the end of another long trip in Nevada. Since it was the end of the trip, we didn’t have enough time to explore the whole mine but it looked promising. We also looked at a few other nearby sites on our list that were too close to pass up. I tried to put a return trip together but it took a few months before I could get the guys to come back with me for a full exploration of the mine. I’m glad we did.
Alysia and I met up with Brian and his daughter Alisha for a little cave exploring around the Stanislaus River. This wild cave is accessible by a hundred foot climb up a steep limestone cliff. The cave is small and only has only a few rooms to explore. And although some of the stalactites in the cave have suffered vandalism over the past one hundred years since its discovery, it is still a pretty awesome place.