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Eastern Sierra Nevadas Old Mines Trip

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Staged outside of Independence (near Lone Pine) on Mazourka Canyon Road.

Heading for the Betty Jumbo Mine in the Inyo Mountains.

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First part of the ride was smooth. That's my '03 KLX 400. The highest point in the 48 states is in the background, Mt. Whitney, 14,494 ft.

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The road up ot the mine.

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Looking back at the road in, note the long drop off...

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At the mine...

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The next day we drove to Panamint Valley, it's the first valley west of Death Valley. We rode to some mines in the Panamint Mountains. They are called that because if you were panning gold you would want to Pan-a-Mint!

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Note the cable up to the mine...

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That's my buddy Fred with his 650 Husaberg.

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That's me and that's all!

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Great pics! Im a certified NV gold miner (dont mine anymore but stay current with MSHA) and you have to give it to all the old timers that would work their way back into the mountain sides to mine metals. If you will notice when you go back into some of the shafts that the ceilings are not very tall at all. In the late 1800's and the turn of the 20th century the average miners height was 5'6 or shorter. The average age of death was 38. I will have to make it out that way to check it out sometimes. Nice ride you guys went on :thumbsup:

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Very cool pics. I have worked the mines here in Northern Nevada as well. Good times... good times. I also love that there are ghost towns and abandoned mines everywhere, makes for good riding and good stories. Thanks for sharing,

Branden

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Mr. Handen, darned nice cellphone picks!

I think a couple of the Barker ranch would have been both interesting and topical.

Well that and some reference to; Fred ran this trip on his first and last Maxxis rear tire. It looked nice and the price seemed like a bargan. But reaching speeds of 106 to 111 mph on hard packed Mazourka Canyon Road resulted in tearing 100% center, and 50% edge knobs on the 120/100-18 Maxx Cross IT.

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Mr. Handen, darned nice cellphone picks!

I think a couple of the Barker ranch would have been both interesting and topical.

Well that and some reference to; Fred ran this trip on his first and last Maxxis rear tire. It looked nice and the price seemed like a bargan. But reaching speeds of 106 to 111 mph on hard packed Mazourka Canyon Road resulted in tearing 100% center, and 50% edge knobs on the 120/100-18 Maxx Cross IT.

I have had really good luck with the Maxxis Desert IT for jagged desert rock riding but at the speeds your reporting I dont think ANY real knobby is going to hold up to that? Damn you guys were moving!

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Thanks for the website. I've known about that ride but haven't done it yet. The webside is a great resource for many other trips too. Love the whole eastern sierras to Death Valley area....Joel

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Not being an ass, but abandoned mines can be lethal. Always exercise caution when around old mine sites.

http://www.forgottennevada.org/sites/files/amlbroch.pdf

Yeah Old mines can be hazardous forsure. I've been to all the safety schools and watched the videos of where people have died messing around in old shafts but I will admit I love to venture around and explore but I do know what to look for when it comes to stress on the mine shafts and NEVER make any loud noises while inside an old shaft. The real killer is the one you dont see, hear or even smell. The ground creates alot of carbon dioxide in the shafts and the old air vent shaft holes the miners blasted are mostly covered now and create a natural gas chamber that can drop you very quickly and your done, nada breathing, dead!!

The early miners used Parakeet's (birds) to fly back into the shafts to see where the bad air pockets were. If they came to where there was a dead bird they would back up, dynamite an air shaft to get fresh air into the shaft and continue. Since it is illegal to shaft mine anymore and pit mining does not allow anything directly over your head the modern day miners dont have those worries. Sorry about the history lesson but just make sure if your exploring old mines that the early miners did not worry about safety features so you could easily fall a VERY long ways to your death if you happen to step on a covered shaft or if you inside a shaft/tunnel it could collapse on you at anytime or you could suck a lung full of bad air and be done as well!

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