|UPDATED: January 1,
Dave's Volvo Page
Below are a series of PDF maps I've created over the years just for fun. The first set of maps I did covered all 139 miles of The Mojave Road, along with some other surrounding areas. I originally did these for my own use for trips to this great area. All are now offered here FREE.
I have also created more maps for a large number of associated off-road trails in the region, adding numerous historical points of interest, landmarks, useful comments and GPS coordinates. The most recent additions are 24 new pages of the McCullough Range just north of the Mojave Preserve that few people ever see. I have also added 10 pages of the eastern slope of the Providence Mountains where you can find sites such as the Bonanza King Mine.
There are now more than 250 pages of maps below that will make you more familiar with the Mojave Preserve and surrounding region than any of your friends.
Historic Sites found in all Maps: CLICK HERE
These maps were done originally for personal use during a number of 4WD trips to the area over a number of years. They have been a big help for me getting to know the layout of this large remote region and they will make you more knowledgeable about the area than any of your friends. These maps can mostly be considered complete, but I frequently add more detail or updates when I find the need or when others contribute additional info. And because I know how useful these maps can be, I offer them here for all other Mojave Road and Eastern Mojave Desert explorers. You may save or print these maps or install them on a tablet or laptop for use on the trail. Low-resolution and high-resolution PDF maps are all available below.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTA special acknowledgement and thank you goes to Dennis Casebier, author of the Mojave Road Guide and many other Mojave Desert book titles. Without his work, I would never have made any trips to this great region. His books sparked the interest to explore more of it. With that in mind, the below maps are not intended to be a substitute for Dennis' essential Mojave Road Guide. If you don't yet own a copy, do yourself a favor and read the Mojave Road Guide before you go.
is a scale
map of the Mojave Road region and major surrounding wagon trails,
sites, etc. Familiarizing yourself with this map will help to
better orient you to the
layout of the historic eastern Mojave Desert region.
A high resolution PDF of this map is available if you want to save it.
To save on your computer, right click on this link and choose "save link as.": >>> mojaveroadmap-dbarton2016lo (10mb)
|Click below for
image (0.67mb JPG)
Road Area Detailed
Map Segments - PDF
Downloads (low resolution files)
The below files are divided into multiple parts to reduce their download sizes. If combined or printed, they may be put in alpha/numeric order.
These files below are considered to be low resolution, so downloading will be easier if you have slower bandwidth.
To save a file on your computer, right click and choose "save link as."
|MojaveRd INDEXlo (0.5mb):||Overview map of PDF map sets. This
is essentially the same as the
above colored "Overview of PDF
index of numerous historical points of interest you'll find along the
way on these trails, along
with historical trivia for the region that
find interesting and helpful.
|MojaveRd1 Westlo (4mb):||The Mojave Road (Western Half, pages 1-14). Covers
Barstow) on the western end to the crossing at
Kelbaker Road (south of Baker). This part of the
Mojave Road mostly follows the Mojave River, passes through Afton
Canyon, traverses Soda Lake and passes Seventeen Mile Point near
14 pages, 54 miles.
|MojaveRd2 Eastlo (5.5mb):||The Mojave Road (Eastern Half, pages 15-38) Covers
Kelbaker Road crossing
to the eastern end point at the Colorado
River. This part covers the Lava Tubes, Mojave Road Mailbox, Marl
Springs, Cedar Canyon, Government Holes, Rock Springs, Lanfair Valley,
Fort Piute and the eastern end near the Colorado River.
24 pages, 85 miles.
|MojaveRd3 Marlsouthlo (1.3mb):||These trails are
directly south of Marl Springs.
The earliest wagon route taking settlers west
originally turned south from Marl Springs instead of the better known
route around the north side of the Marl Mountains. It then
went over Rocky Ridge and through Jackass Canyon and then west across
the sandy flats to Afton
This route was abandoned around 1859 due to harsh terrain at Rocky
sandy areas in the canyon. Unfortunately the historic trails
immediately south of Marl
Closed to Vehicles by the NPS. Most other portions are still
|MojaveRd4 Cimalo (1.4mb):||The Cima area trails are to the
north of the Mojave Road and
to the west of the New
York Mountains. It is accessed by turning north on Cima
Road (AKA Death Valley Mine Road) off of the Mojave Road (Cedar Canyon
Road) in Round Valley. One of the many prominent features to see in
this area is
of the Death Valley Mine.
|MojaveRd5 PintoNYMtnslo (3.2mb):||These are trails to the
north of the Mojave Road and east of the above Cima maps. Included are Pinto Valley,
New York Mountains, Carruthers Canyon and surrounding areas.
Access is made by
turning north on New York
Mountain Road (off of Cedar Canyon Road in Round Valley) or turn north
Canyon Road (off of the Mojave Road) in Lanfair Valley.
off of or near Black Canyon Road,
which runs south from the Mojave Road (near Round Valley). Black Canyon
Road runs 19 miles south to Essex Road, which can connect you to I-40.
Round Valley, Wild
Horse Canyon, Wild Horse Canyon Road Loop, Mid Hills Campground, Gold
Valley, Hole in
the Wall, Hole in the Wall Campground and Visitors Center, Woods
Mountains and Colton Hills.
||This map of
Lanfair Valley Trail runs north/south from Searchlight, NV to
CA, a total distance of about 48 trail miles. It intersects with
the Mojave Road just west of the Piute Mountains. This is the NORTH half, which covers about 35 trail
miles from Searchlight to the Mojave Road.
13 pages, 35 miles.
|MojaveRd8 EastLanfairTrSolo (1.3mb):||The East
Lanfair Valley Trail runs north/south from Searchlight, NV to
Goffs, CA, a total distance of about 48 trail miles. It
with the Mojave Road just west of the Piute Mountains. This is the SOUTH half, which covers about 13 trail
miles from the Mojave Road to Goffs.
6 pages, 13 miles.
|MojaveRd9 ToughNutlo (0.5mb):||The
Tough Nut area shows some
east of Kelso Cima Road (about 10 miles south of the Mojave Road).
These trails lead to
gold mines; Globe Mine, Good Hope Mine and Tough Nut Mine. This area is
considered to be in the
northern Providence Mountains.
|MojaveRd10 ElDoradoCañonRdlo (0.8mb):||The
El Dorado Cañon Road is a historic route, circa 1860s, that begins
Mojave Road in Lanfair Valley and goes northeast through the Castle
Mountains to Searchlight,
beyond to gold mines in El Dorado Cañon near the Colorado River.
This route could also connected travelers to Las Vegas and the Salt
Trail to Utah. This
road merges with the East Lanfair
Valley Trail in the northeast corner of Lanfair Valley and it continues
north within this map MojaveRd7 East
Lanfair Tr North (beginning with Page 8).
|MojaveRd11 PiuteValleyTraillo (1.8mb):||The
Piute Valley Trail may
the correct historical name for this section, however it serves as a
fitting description. It covers a 25 miles section from Searchlight,
Nevada south to Piute Springs and Fort Piute. This trail is the
southern portion of
the larger trail
which extends north to El Dorado Cañon and further north to Las
Vegas and connection with the Salt Lake Trail. It's existence
Searchlight (originally a mining camp in 1897) by many years and it is
to possibly be as old as
the Spanish Trail. While this trail does not offer the entertainment
value of most of the others, it's just as historically important.
11 pages, 25 miles.
|MojaveRd12 KelsoTraillo (1.2mb):||The
Kelso Trail may not be
the correct historical name for this trail, however it works.
The northern end of this trail begins in the center of Jackass Canyon
and runs 13 miles
Kelso. This early road once existed as part of the most
direct route between Baker and Kelso long before Kelbaker Road was
constructed (Kelbaker Road did not yet exist in USGS topo maps dated
1956. There was only an early road between Kelso and Amboy to the
south, so Kelbaker Road was built sometime after 1956).
6 pages, 13 miles.
|MojaveRd13 Piute Detourlo (1.6mb):||These
Piute Detour maps were
created after heavy rains in the spring of 2016 washed out parts of the
Old Cable Road (used as an important Mojave Road bypass). This affected
between Mojave Road mile 27 and 30.9 and travels up the canyon from the
side of the Piute Mountains to the west side into Lanfair Valley.
If needed, this detour
to the south
will take you 14 miles out of the way. 2017
Update Note: Reports have said repairs still have not been made
and closure signs still exist, however crossing the washout areas have
been found to be easy with reasonably high-clearance vehicles.
7 pages, 14 miles.
|MojaveRd14 Macedonialo (1.3mb):||The
Macedonia area shows
south of Mojave Road (off Cedar Canyon Road) and east of Kelso Cima
The most prominent trail is Macedonia Canyon Road, which runs 6.2 miles
from Kelso Cima Road to Wild Horse Canyon Road. A large number of
trails, old mines and springs are illustrated in these maps.
|HIGH-RESOLUTION versions of the
map segments are located below.
To save a file on your computer, right click and choose "save link as."
MojaveRd2 East (39mb):
MojaveRd3 Marlsouth (8mb):
MojaveRd4 Cima (9.7mb):
MojaveRd5 PintoNYMtns (15.4mb):
MojaveRd6 BlackCanyonRd (15mb):
MojaveRd7 EastLanfairTrNo (13.8mb):
MojaveRd8 EastLanfairTrSo (6.3mb):
MojaveRd9 ToughNut (2mb):
MojaveRd10 ElDoradoCañonRd (4.2mb):
MojaveRd11 PiuteValleyTrail (22mb):
MojaveRd12 KelsoTrail (5.8mb):
MojaveRd13 Piute Detour (9.4mb):
MojaveRd14 Macedonia (5.8mb):
MojaveRd INDEX2 (0.07mb):
|These high-resolution files to the left
are higher are up to 80%
larger in size than the low-resolution maps listed above. I added
these for those of
internet speeds or plenty of storage space. The images are more crisp and
INDEX2 at the bottom is a text index of notable sites in the area. That information may also be found HERE.
image (1mb JPG)
The above image is a summary of the below additional 75 pages of maps I've developed covering the Cady Mountains area west of Crucero Road and south of Afton Canyon. This area is vast and typically less explored and uncrowded. For those of you interested in something new, this might be the ticket.
I have provided low resolution and high resolution PDF maps below.
This map set is divided into three segments to help with downloads, etc.
Each segment includes 25 map pages.
|MojaveRd15CadyMtns-Crucero1lo (4.2mb):||Low resolution, pages 1-25.
|MojaveRd15CadyMtns-Crucero2lo (4mb):||Low resolution, pages 26-50.
|MojaveRd15CadyMtns-Crucero3lo (4.3mb):||Low resolution, pages 51-75.
|MojaveRd15CadyMtns-Crucero1 (25mb):||HIGH resolution, pages 1-25.
|MojaveRd15CadyMtns-Crucero2 (25mb):||HIGH resolution, pages 26-50.
|MojaveRd15CadyMtns-Crucero3 (24mb):||HIGH resolution, pages 51-75.
|Click for larger
image (340kb JPG)
Region Map Segments
<<< This image is a summary of the below additional 7 pages of maps I have developed covering Cave Mountain north of Afton Canyon.
I have provided low resolution and high resolution PDF maps below.
|MojaveRd16CaveMtnlo (1.5mb):||Low resolution maps.
|MojaveRd16CaveMtn (7mb):||HIGH resolution maps.
|Click for larger
image (190kb JPG)
Range Map Segments
<<< 24 pages showing the McCullough Range just northeast of the California/Nevada border and just north of the Mojave Preserve and east of Primm, Nevada.
These mountains feature some higher elevations (over 6000 feet) along with many tree filled areas typically not found in the Mojave Preserve.
I have provided low resolution and high resolution PDF maps below.
|MojaveRd17McCulloughRangelo (4.5mb):||Low resolution maps.
|MojaveRd17McCulloughRangehi (20mb):||HIGH resolution maps.
|Click for larger
image (240kb JPG)
Mountains EAST Map Segments
<<< 10 pages showing the eastern slope region of the Providence Mountains.
These maps feature the eastern slope region of the Providence Mountains and surround the Providence Mountains State Recreation Area (Mitchell Caverns) and Bonanza King Mine regions.
More info about the Bonanza King Mine HERE.
I have provided low resolution and high resolution PDF maps below.
|MojaveRd18ProvidenceEastlo (2mb):||Low resolution maps.
|MojaveRd18ProvidenceEasthi (8.4mb):||HIGH resolution maps.
|Mojave Road Stickers
|Expedition Portal Forum: http://forum.expeditionportal.com/index.php
Expedition Portal relevant to Mojave Road area:
Overland Bound Forum: https://www.overlandbound.com/forums/
Overland Bound Forum relevant to Mojave Road region:
RELEVENT MOJAVE AREA BLOGS
Desert Trip Logs. Many cool locations with photos:
Mojave Preserve Maps, Camping and Trail Brochures provided by the NPS:
USGS Topo Map of Mojave Preserve Area. A MUST HAVE ITEM. (pdf):
CA_Ivanpah_299098_1985_100000_geo (22mb pdf)
Funtreks.com Mojave Road GPX Download (look for #98, 99 and 100): https://www.funtreks.com/free-gps-waypoint-downloads#cali2nd
Mojave-road.com Downloads: http://www.mojave-road.com/gps-coordinates.htm
Wikipedia: MOJAVE ROAD
pics from past Mojave Road trips.
Some older fun pics of our 4WD trip to Leadville, Colorado way back in July 2000.
Please excuse the photo quality. Digital cameras in 2000 were pretty new and primitive. Nothing like now.
This trip was called BroncoFest 2000 and was the first event organized by members of the 2BigBroncos club web forum, so it was historic. Approximately 50 Broncos (and a couple other brand 4x4s) trekked to Leadville, Colorado from nearly every state in the country, including Alaska, for a 5-day festival in Printer Boy Campground. A large number of 4WD trail excursions were accomplished with groups divided by levels of vehicle capability and trips made each day.
|Holy Cross Trail
|Mosquito Pass Trail
|INDEX OF HISTORIC SITES FOUND IN
A text PDF document with all this may be found here: MojaveRd INDEX2
|Afton Canyon:|| Afton Canyon is often called
Canyon of the Mojave.” It was originally called Cave Canyon, but
acquired the current name after the railroad
stop of Afton was created at the west end of the canyon. It’s one
of the few places where the Mojave River flows above
ground in places all year round. Four-wheel drive vehicle
permitted through most of the canyon, however no vehicles are allowed
in the far western end, where the “horseshoe” bend is and where the
caves are located. This closed area is
accessible on foot only. It may be bypassed in your vehicle from the
east by taking the access road along the railroad tracks and driving
through the Mojave River wash and under the railroad tressel.
Afton Cemetery is located south of where the station once sat. There are five stone-covered mounds and wooden crosses. One of the burials has been identified as that of Jose Flores, born about 1882, died May 29, 1906. Flores was one of three men who arrived at Afton Station on an early-morning train hoping to be hired on in a local mine. They were intoxicated and attacked Section Foreman Robert Y. Williams, who was severely injured in the brawl. Flores was killed. The other two were wounded, one reportedly died later. [John V. Richardson, Jr., San Bernardino County Museum Association Quarterly, Vol. 55, Number 4, 2010].
MojaveRd1West Pages 5, 6. GPS: 35.030936,-116.366846
|Arbuckle Mine:|| A magnesite (magnesium) mine
high up on
the side of a cliff on the south side in Afton Canyon. A large piece of
timber at the mine has "Arbuckle Mine 1894" carved into it. At one time
there was an aerial tramway to carry the ore down the cliff and across
the Mojave River wash to a railroad siding. Arbuckle was later called
MojaveRd1West Page 6. GPS: 35.021987,-116.350769
|Bitter Springs:|| A large spring among a green
(mostly mesquite and cattails) along the Salt Lake Trail (also known as
the Mormon Trail or Spanish Trail). It sits in the Mojave Desert
30 miles northeast of the Forks of the Road, a place where the Salt
splits from the Mojave Road a few miles west of
Camp Cady. The name, Bitter Springs, was given for its brackish taste,
although the water was drinkable.
Bitter Springs is currently off limits to
the public because it's within the borders of present day Fort Irwin.
The Army takes steps to preserve and protect the area from
damage during training.
Found in Scale Map. GPS: 35.2271814,-116.4316653
|Bonanza King Mine:|| Located on the eastern slope of
Providence Mountains. Silver was discovered in this area in 1880 and
soon a large mining operation was built. A ten-stamp mill was brought
in from San Francisco and the mine employed as many as 150 men earning
a wage of $4 per day. The nearby town of Providence was built with a
office, two general stores, two hotels, a saloon, a blacksmith and a
survey office. By it’s closure in
1885, 1.7 million dollars in silver had been mined (valued at over $40
million today). Ruins of the town
still remain along with stone walls of at least a dozen
MojaveRd18ProvidenceEast Page 5. GPS: 34.980278,-115.505278
|Brannigan Mine:|| Located in the Old Dad
Mountains. The most
intact mine in the area. Gold was discovered at the Brannigan Mine in
1905. It was sparsely mined until 1930 when M. A. Sisley and John
Herrod found high-grade ore and relocated the claims. From
1938 to 1940 it yielded 51 tons of ore with 59 ounces of gold and 20
ounces of silver (source: Geology and Mineral Resources of the Ivanpah
Quadrangle). Despite the short mining period,
the Herrod family lived at the claim well into the 1970s, with John
Herrod’s grandchildren returning in April of 2012 to visit the
There are still two cabins there that are maintained by a local 4WD group and are open and available for use to all 4WD explorers. They ask only that you please leave them in the same or better condition as you found them. The Oro Fino Mine is a short distance further up the same road.
MojaveRd1West Page 14. GPS: 35.192629,-115.892476
|Camp Cady:|| Located on the northern bank of
River a few miles east of Barstow, Camp Cady was established in 1860 by
Major James H. Carleton of the U.S. Army. Their purpose in the area was
to punish area Paiute Indians who had been attacking wagon train
travelers and had murdered a cattleman and some other travelers near
Bitter Springs. Bitter Springs was located on the Los Angeles to Salt
and it is currently within the Fort Irwin Training Center north of
Barstow. Carlton's superior in San
Francisco, General Newman S. Clarke, ordered him to "proceed to Bitter
and chastise the Indians you find in the vicinity." The General
specifically instructed Carleton that "the punishment must fall on
dwelling nearest to the place of the murder or frequenting the water
courses in its vicinity."
After establishing his base at Camp Cady, Carlton sent out patrols looking for hostiles. On April 22nd, 1860, on Carlton's orders, the bodies of two Native American men, who had been slain earlier by a detachment of troops on the Mojave River at the Fish Ponds, were taken to Bitter Springs. There at the site of the earlier attack, the bodies were hung from an improvised scaffold. Then after another engagement at Old Dad Mountain on May 2nd, the heads of three more natives killed were cut off, taken to Bitter Springs and placed on display with those already hung. On May 28th, following reports of the displays in the San Francisco press, General Clarke ordered Carleton to stop mutilating the dead and remove all evidence of the mutilation from public gaze. Camp Cady was eventually abandoned after 1871 when it was deemed the Paiutes had been sufficiently pacified.
MojaveRd1West Page 1. GPS: 34.940513,-116.599452, 34.945869,-116.589727
|Carruthers Canyon:|| Also spelled Caruthers Canyon.
2 miles deep and a fairly wide canyon in the New York Mountains. This
location has some higher elevations from 5300 to 6000 feet and features
plenty of trees, rock formations and hiking trails. It’s
a popular spot for camping. A few of the features: Giant Ledge
Mine (at the end of the Carruthers Canyon Trail), Phallic Rock and
Stone Table Campsite, a primitive camping area (AKA: Phallic Rock
MojaveRd5PintoNY Page 8. GPS: 35.230132,-115.300869
|Death Valley Mine:|| Located a few miles north of
Road and east of Cima, the Death Valley Mine was founded in 1906 by
local Kelso resident J. L. Bright. Bright sold the mine to the Death
Valley Gold Milling and Mining Company of Denver that same year. A camp
by the name of Dawson sprang up nearby, named after the Dawson
brothers, who were directors of the mining company. Dawson Camp served
community for the workers of not only the Death
Valley Mine, but other mines that played a part in the Cima Mining
District. In 1907, Death Valley Gold Milling and Mining Company and
neighboring Arcalvada Mining and Milling
Company consolidated and became known as the
Death Valley-Arcalvada Consolidated Mines Company. Between the two
mines, seventy-five men were employed
as of November 1907. The total haul for 1907 was estimated at
around 75,000 ounces of silver. The mine was active until the 1930s
and revived for a short time in the 1950s. It has been a ghost town
ever since. Overall silver production was estimated at $131,000. A
number of structures still survive,
including a large two-story home, a small single story home, as well as
a number of shops and sheds. There are no “private property” signs,
however there is a locked gate that will keep vehicles out. Mining
equipment litters the landscape, most of it appearing to be from the
MojaveRd4CIMA Page 2. GPS: 35.21861,-115.464722
||The Mojave Road intersects with
El Dorado Cañon Road in Lanfair
Valley at mile 96.1/43.7. This intersection may be seen at MojaveRd2East
Page 27. GPS: 35.139792,-115.217798.
El Dorado Cañon Road travels northeast from that intersection and then merges with the East Lanfair Valley Trail about 11 miles away in the northeast corner of Lanfair Valley. This stretch of El Dorado Cañon Road running through Lanfair Valley is nearly a straight line. It's faint in some areas, but still visible and appears navigable for its entire length.
Intersection with East Lanfair Valley Trail at MojaveRd7EastLanfairTrNo Page 8.
This northeastern wagon route was important to travelers in the 1860s as an early route to the north. After 28 miles it would pass through the site (which eventually became a mining camp), now known as Searchlight, Nevada, founded in 1897. It then turned north to El Dorado Cañon near the Colorado River (about 28 miles north of Searchlight). Beyond El Dorado Cañon was Las Vegas where there were connections to the Salt Lake Trail.
El Dorado Cañon is located in southern Clark County, Nevada near the small town of Nelson. It got famous for its rich silver and gold mines. There are mine tours in the area near the Techatticup Mine, one of the oldest and historically most productive mines in the area.
|Forks of the Road:
||This is the location where the
Salt Lake Trail splits from the Mojave Road. It’s location was a short
distance west of
Camp Cady. The trail began on the north side of the Mojave River wash
and travelled northeast to the Alvord Mountains and then to Bitter
Spring, a popular water stop for immigrants on the trail, which is now
the Fort Irwin military base and off limits to the public. See Scale Map. The exact location for Forks in the Road is
not known, but it is believed to be near Minneola Road and Cajalco Blvd
in rural East Barstow here: 34.908806,-116.768698.
||Fort Mojave was originally named
Camp Colorado when it was established on April 19, 1859 by U.S. Army
Lieutenant Colonel William Hoffman during the Mojave War. It was
located on the eastern bank of the Colorado River at Beale's Crossing,
near the head of the Mojave Valley in Mojave County, Arizona. The site
was recommended by Lieutenant Edward F. Beale, who had previously
explored the region.
The fort was used as a base of military operations against the Mojave Indians. With 50 soldiers, Lieutenant Hoffman reportedly defeated 200 Mojave in a battle in the summer of 1859, after which hostilities with the Mojave ended. Two years later, after the start of the American Civil War, Brigadier General Edwin V. Sumner ordered the post abandoned and the buildings burned on May 28, 1861, in order to withdraw the regular troops to garrison Los Angeles against an anticipated secessionist uprising. Later that year the regulars were sent east to serve with the Union Army.
On May 19, 1863, the post was rebuilt and infantry troops reassigned to protect travelers along the Mojave and Prescott road. This time the Infantry successfully cultivated friendly relations with the Mojave Indians. These volunteer soldiers also took up prospecting and established mining claims in the area and many later found they did not want to leave. Many of them would return after being mustered out after the end of the Civil War. After the end of the Indian Wars, the fort was transferred in 1890 to the Bureau of Indian Affairs. In 1935 it was transferred to the Fort Mojave Indian Reservation. The location is currently administered by the state of Arizona.
MojaveRd2East Page 37. GPS: 35.044115,-114.622305
||Fort Piute was established in
late 1859 by U.S. Army Captain James H. Carleton. It was eventually
made a sub-post of Camp Cady. It was placed near Piute Springs in the
foothills of the Piute Mountains 23 miles west of Fort Mojave. Captain
Carleton originally named the post Fort Beale for Lieutenant Edward F.
Beale, U.S. Navy. In 1857 to 1859, Lieutenant Beale and his caravan of
camels famously explored the area for a suitable wagon road to the
name was later changed to Fort Piute. Fort Piute was abandoned in 1868.
MojaveRd2East Page 31. GPS: 35.115020, -114.985260
|Fred Welch Home:
||Homestead of Fred L. Welch,
circa 1914. Mojave Road at intersection with Caruthers Canyon Road.
MojaveRd2East Page 26. GPS: 35.13999,-115.25584
||Originally named Banning’s Well,
this well was dug in 1859 by employees of Phineas Banning (who was
considered the "Father of the Port of Los Angeles, founder of
Wilmington, California, and the man for whom the City of Banning,
California was named) . Banning's Well was later renamed Government
Holes after U.S. solders enlarged and improved it in 1860. Even though
"Holes" is used, there is only one well. Countless early travelers made
use of this well, but it has mostly been used for cattle
operations in the area. The most famous incident at Government Holes
November 8, 1925, when two men, Matt Burts and J. W. "Bill" Robinson,
shot it out in a cabin there. Both were killed.
MojaveRd2East Page 24. GPS: 35.149245,-115.354778
|Hole in the Wall
|This campground is located at
4,400 feet elevation and surrounded by sculptured volcanic rock walls.
It has 35 campsites with areas large enough for motorhomes, trailers
and two walk-in tent sites. Facilities include pit toilets, picnic
tables, fire rings, trash cans, and drinkable water on a limited basis.
There are no utility hookups but there is a sanitary disposal
station. Fees: $12 per site per night, $6 for America the
Beautiful Senior Access Pass holders. Campsites available on a
first-come, first-served basis.
MojaveRd6BlackCanyonRd Page 4. GPS: 35.045382,-115.392908
|A large collection of large
rocks on a hill which display hundreds of detailed and clear petroglyph
drawings. Also you’ll
discover a large natural stone well on the southwest side of the hill.
The site is well-preserved, with
minimal vandalism. There are a few inscriptions from early white
travelers with dates ranging from 1900 to 1919. The well still
holds water, however appearing a bit stagnant. It’s easy to miss this
but worth the visit. It's only about a mile out of your way when on the
MojaveRd2East Page 28. GPS: 35.145670,-115.159135
||You may find the road leading
east to Indian Spring off Kelbaker Road at
This intersection is about 0.7 mile north of the entrance of the lava flow split (south of Seventeen Mile Point). This is NOT the same road as Indian Springs Trail, which is a few miles south. Indian Spring is about 3.5 miles east of Kelbaker Road.
Near MojaveRd1West Page 14.
The approximate location of Indian Spring is GPS: 35.232219,-115.821186
||Before the Mojave Road as we
know it was created, the earliest wagon route west went south from Marl
Springs, instead of northwest. It crossed a valley and then went over
Rocky Ridge, through Jackass Canyon, and west across what is now known
as Devil's Playground. This route
was abandoned around 1859 due to harsh terrain on Rocky Ridge and deep
MojaveRd3MarlSouth Page 4. GPS: 35.079913,-115.842572
||Kelso Depot was built in 1924
and was used as a railroad depot until 1962. It's a Spanish Mission
style building, with red-tile roof and graceful arches. At its peak
during World War II, the town of Kelso supported 2,000 residents. The
depot's diner, the Beanery, served customers 24 hours a day for many
years. Once slated for demolition, the depot was saved and has been
restored by the National Park Service for use as a visitor center. The
Beanery is no longer open.
||Most of the eastern Mojave was
opened to homesteading by the US government in 1910. That year,
inspired by the gospel of dryfarming techniques, and sensitive to the
potential increase in value of property with good access to
transportation, Ernest Lanfair, a merchant from Searchlight, claimed a
portion of the valley that would later bear his name. His homestead and
several others became the heart of a community along the railroad.
Migration to the area rose sharply in 1912 as word
spread of Lanfair's bumper crops and free land. Settlers, referred
derisively by cattlemen as "nesters," established a post office, a
general store and a school. Further north, a settlement at Ledge had
similar amenities. A 1914 Fourth of July community barbecue, hosted by
Lanfair, counted some 400 participants. Future residents would rent
boxcars from the Santa Fe Railway, known as "immigrant cars," load all
of their possessions, and then meet the boxcar several days later on a
siding in Lanfair Valley. Newly arrived migrants staked and recorded
their claims, and worked to clear and plant a portion of the land to
meet government requirements. Later homesteaders often came along and
bought the improved claims of former residents who moved away before
receiving title to the land. When that happened, the process of gaining
title would begin anew, but at least the new arrivals did not have to
worry about constructing a place to live.
Ernest Lanfair’s home can be seen still standing near the intersection of the Mojave Road and an unknown north-south road at MojaveRd2East Page 28. GPS 35.131571,-115.16512
||The Mojave Desert Lava Tubes are
off of Aiken Cinder Mine Road 3 miles north of the Mojave Road. Within
the lava field is a short trail leading to subterranean tubes formed by
molten lava. A stout steel ladder takes hikers down into the tubes
where a few skylights above light things up. Bring a flashlight if you
want to explore inside.
MojaveRd2East Page 16. GPS: 35.216348,-115.751417
||Also known as Camp Marl Springs,
first garrisoned as a small informal Army outpost by troops from Camp
Cady and Camp Rock Spring in October 1867. It was continuously occupied
until May 1868, when it was abandoned permanently. In 1867 the post was
reportedly surrounded by hostile Indians. During a 24 hour siege the
station had a
full test of its position. There were only three men there but they
came out with their scalps intact. In the true spirit of the West, just
at dawn a rescue column of soldiers cut through the besieging circle of
Indians to save the post. Marl Springs continued to be an important
station on the travel route across the Mojave Desert. It also served as
the site for
several trading posts. Some old deserted structures and ruins still
occupy the site. Crumbling rock walls mark the site of the old Army
MojaveRd2East Page 19. GPS: 35.170700,-115.647590
||This 26-spot campground is
nestled in pinyon pine and juniper trees at 5,600 feet. Temperatures
are typically 10 to 15 degrees lower than Hole in the Wall Campground.
Facilities include pit toilets, picnic tables, fire rings, trash cans,
and drinkable water on a limited basis.The road to the campground is
not paved and is not recommended for motorhomes or trailers.
Fees: $12 per site per night, $6 for America the Beautiful Senior
Access Pass holders. Campsites available on a first-come, first-served
MojaveRd6BlackCanyonRd Page 6. GPS: 35.131637,-115.435568
||The Mojave Desert Veterans
Memorial was erected in 1934 by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) in
honor of World War I veterans and those who were killed in action.
Riley Bembry, one of the founders of the memorial and a veteran of
World War I, took care of the cross until his death in 1984. Shortly
before his passing, he asked his friend, Henry Sandoz, to care for the
memorial. Since that time, Henry and his wife, Wanda, have looked after
the cross. In 2001 the ACLU filed a lawsuit on behalf of a man
living in Oregon who argued the cross was unconstitutional, because it
was located on government land. Lower federal courts agreed, ordering
the removal of the cross and prohibiting Congress (who passed a law to
transfer the property to the VFW) from making the transfer
happen. Liberty Institute stepped in and filed an amicus
brief at the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the VFW, The American
Legion, Military Order of the Purple Heart and American Ex-Prisoners of
War. In 2010 the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the lower court
ruling and declared that the law passed by Congress in 2003, allowing
the transfer to the VFW, was constitutional. The transfer was made in
exchange for other land in the Mojave Desert owned by Henry
Sandoz. Days after that ruling, vandals stole the cross. It was
recovered 500 miles away and returned.
On Cima Road 10.8 mile north of the Mojave Road. GPS: 35.314280,-115.548789
See Scale Map.
|The Mojave Desert Heritage and
Cultural Association is located at 37198 Lanfair Road in Goffs, CA.
location features a cultural center and museum as well as the restored
Goff’s Schoolhouse, originally built in 1914. The center is open a
limited number of days each week, so be sure to check the web
can also open the facility for visiting groups with a few days advanced
notice. The center is funded through donations, so your
generosity is appreciated.
||One of the peculiar mysteries of
the eastern Mojave Desert. There are a lot of speculative stories on
the internet about what it is and why it was made, from a warning siren
to a gun sight to a drum. Or maybe a hoax of some sort or just
plain art. Either way, no one seems to know how long ago it was
placed there. MojaveRd15CadyMtns-Crucero pages 12 &
13. GPS: 35.0054,-116.1964.
||Be sure to stop at the Mojave
Road Mailbox at Mojave Road mile 74. This metal box and flag pole with
U.S. flag was installed in 1983 by the Friends of the Mojave Road, an
affiliate of the Mojave Desert Heritage and Cultural Association in
Goffs, CA. Visit www.mdhca.org.
There is a register inside the
mailbox for Mojave Road travelers to sign in, record their passing and
MojaveRd2East Page 18 GPS: 35.185400,-115.692840
||Large concrete monument on the
southwestern corner of the Mohave Road and Ivanpah-Lanfair Road.
A brass plaque reads the following:
“Nevada Southern Railway. In January of 1893 construction of Isaac C. Blake’s Nevada Southern Railway commenced northward from Geoffs toward Manvel (later known as Barnwell) for the purpose of hauling ore from the mining districts of southeastern California and southern Nevada. It soon went bankrupt and was reorganized in 1895 as the California Eastern Railway. Six years later the line was extended north into Ivanpah Valleyand in July of 1902 was acquired by the Santa Fe Railroad. Four years later the Barnwell & Searchlight Railway was built from Barnwell to the mines at Searchlight, Nevada. After 1918 the Santa Fe abandoned part of it’s line in the Ivanpah and only ran trains beyond Barnwell when warranted by demand. Several substantial washouts and continuing unprofitability caused the Santa Fe to abandon their rails north of Goffs in 1923. Lanfair and Ivanpah Road parallel the former Southern Nevada Railway grade as it proceeds northward from Goffs, then runs directly upon it for part of the distance through the New York Mountains. Sections of the roadbed, washed out in several places, can be seen from Ivanpah and Lanfair Road. This monument has been erected on a portion of the original grade used by the N S and C E Railroads.” “Plaque dedicated October 12, 2008, by the Billy Holcomb Chapter of the Ancient and Honorable Order of E Clampus Vitus in cooperation with the Mojave Desert Heritage & Cultural Association.”
MojaveRd2East Page 27. GPS: 35.13866,-115.186983
|Old Dad Mountains:
||This mountain range received the
name “Old Dad,” after Joseph “Old Dad” Wallace, a railroad worker from
Kelso, who later became a prospector. Wallace was accused of murdering
his fiancée, which prompted him to leave town. He moved to this
mountain range with a team of donkeys to prospect.
MojaveRd1West Page 14, MojaveRd2East Page 15. GPS: 35.158779,-115.875728
||The Oro Fino Mine is one of the
earliest mines in the area. It began production in the 1890s. The
expense of moving the ore at the time is what likely shut the mine down
after a few years. The mine was reactivated in the 1930s and operated
through 1943, producing about $50,000 in gold. It’s just past the
Brannigan Mine on the same road.
MojaveRd1West Page 14.
||The Paymaster Mine, also known
as the Whitney Mine, was the largest producer in the Old Dad Range.
It’s most relevant years were from 1900-1914. Water was piped in from
Indian Spring and it had a mill operating in 1911. It is estimated to
have made between $50,000 and $100,000 before being shut down in 1914
due to litigation. The mine was reopened in 1930 and was active on and
off through the 1980s.
MojaveRd1West Page 14. GPS: 35.199127,-115.906398
||The Penny Can is an old can
(often several cans) hanging from a tree on the north side of the
about head level. Tradition is to leave a penny as a tongue-in-cheek
contribution to Mojave Road maintenance. According to Dennis Casebier,
as the Mojave Road was being developed as a recreational trail in 1983,
the can was found hanging here with a few pennies inside. Extra cans
are generally added when one becomes full.
MojaveRd2East Page 27. GPS: 35.135488,-115.177167
||Piute Springs are natural
springs about 3500 feet distance up the canyon toward the west from
Piute. It is generally isolated and only accessible by foot,
since vehicle traffic is prohibited by the NPS beyond fort Piute.
MojaveRd2East Pages 30, 31. GPS: 35.110825,-114.996066
||Camp Rock Spring was established
by the U.S. Army on December 30, 1866 as a small outpost of Camp Cady.
Water was a problem at the post. The spring was poor and irregular and
water had to be brought in from a mile west at Government Holes. It was
maintained as an army post until May 21, 1868.
MojaveRd2East Page 25. GPS: 35.152830, -115.327300
||Before the Mojave Road as we
know it was created, the earliest wagon route to the west proceeded
south from Marl Springs instead of northwest. From there it would cross
Rocky Ridge and then through Jackass Canyon. After exiting
Jackass Canyon, the route would cross the expanse of Devil’s
Playground. This route across Devil’s Playground is nearly due west
from Jackass Canyon on a 25 mile track directly to the east end of
This route was abandoned around 1859 due to harsh terrain on Rocky
and deep sand in the canyon and beyond. While the road down the ridge
is really no longer
visible, you can still see the lines of stones that were moved aside
down the ridge that borders where the wagons used to go. This area is
accessed from a modern powerline road nearby.
Details here: MojaveRd3MarlSouth Page 3. GPS: 35.110814,-115.794721
|Stray Cow Wells:
||During the Civil War the US
military spent time scouting the Mojave Desert looking for suitable
routes for moving men and supplies. Captain George Price was
given such a commission and in 1864 he led a company of men from Salt
Lake City to Fort Mojave. They then travelled west to a well named
During Captain Price’s journey his company came upon a stray cow at a
watering hole near Lewis Holes. Prices men killed and ate the cow. The
watering hole was named Stray Cow Wells in commemoration of the event.
Located south of Searchlight, Nevada on the El Dorado Cañon Road
Trail at the California/Nevada line. MojaveRd7EastLanfairTrNo Page 5. GPS: 35.331488,-115.043951.
||Located on a mesa overlooking
the Mojave River Wash, on the north west side. They were created by
unknown people by removing rocks from the desert surface. They are
easily visible and may be accessed by a side road that climbs up the
back of the mesa. There is a line of posts to prevent you from driving
too close, but you can walk right up to them. The Triangles are large
enough to be visible in Google Maps.
MojaveRd1West Page 3. GPS: 34.986632,-116.486365
||The Travelers Monument is a fun
part of the journey on the Mojave Road. It sits near the center of Soda
Lake. Bring a large rock if you want to add to the monument. Thousands
have done so over the years. Once you arrive, you’ll get to read the
plaque and receive the profound knowledge that only travelers of the
Mojave Road can know. Do not divulge
this secret to any non-Mojave Road Travelers.
MojaveRd1West Page 10. GPS: 35.13086,-116.095365
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