Starbuck's Exploring

Hiking and exploring backcountry locations of the Western United States.

Category: Sierra Nevada (page 1 of 6)

Par Value Mill

Late autumn of 2017 found us tracking down a very unusual stamp mill high in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. The mill was a unique hammer design called a Pratt Ideal Stamp Mill. Very few of these mills were ever put into use and even fewer (if any!) still exist in the wild, so we were very interested in finding it.

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Summit Mine

High up in the spires of the Sierra Nevada there lies a hidden and seldom visited mine where a trail goes through the mountain.

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Adamson Mine

At 12,990 ft, the Adamson is the highest mine in the Sierra Nevada. And as you might suspect, getting there is no easy feat. It is a strenuous 8.6 mile (one-way) and 3,670 foot climb up the rugged Wheeler Ridge to reach it. This is the top of the Sierras. Altitude sickness is a real concern here so be aware of headaches and fatigue. Turn around and head down if you feel sick.

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MV Mill

I found this hidden mill a few years ago. It is unusual in that it was powered by a Pelton wheel. Water was funneled into a ditch and then a pipe and poured over the waterwheel, which drove the equipment inside. A water-powered mill is a rare sight in the land of little rain

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Owens Valley Three Stamp Mill

Last year, I stopped by a forgotten and overlooked three stamp mill in the backcountry of Owens Valley. Seems like even the locals don’t know it exists.

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