Ghosts Of Mining Past

For those who don’t believe in ghosts, think about the science of energy: it can be transformed or transferred but not destroyed.

Now think about the human consciousness as energy: our emotions and innate instincts possibly leaving impressions in a time-space continuum. To get to the point, I believe ghosts are energy remnants and I believe that places connected with adventure and passion – like old mines – are probably replete with these “recordings”.

That’s what I was contemplating as we struggled up the hill the last time we visited the property. Every time I paused to catch my breath, I took a moment to just listen and “feel” the place. I wanted to “ask” those who’d gone before us, where the gold still hides if much is left.

The California Mine and surrounding property has become more than just a business opportunity or a recreational getaway to us. It’s historically significant  and has a romantic appeal that has caught our imaginations.

Being there in person, we’re witnessing with our own eyes, what the miners took one last look at – maybe over a shoulder – before walking or riding away roughly seventy years ago.

Punching a hole through time, I feel our presence might stir up the cosmic “dust”. Except for the effects of nature, I feel we have walked in on time frozen. The mine was last worked in 1939, according to geological reports.

Roaming around the property, we’ve found mule shoes, mini rail spikes (everywhere), pots, chimneys, old oil cans, and tons of nails – everything rusty and sounding like gold on my metal detector.


My husband is fascinated with history and artifacts so this place is a dream come true for him. Picking up a chisel, so encrusted with oxidized iron it’s barely recognizable, one can’t help but imagine the poor soul who had to hold it while another miner swung at it with a sledge hammer. That’s trust and now, rust.

Huge timbers, built to hold up a mountain now lay strewn about, oversized bolts, nails and nuts still holding them together in places.

I can almost see the miners sorting the ore, hear the creak of loaded wagons bumping down the narrow paths, headed toward town then the smelter. Right where we are standing at any given moment, meals were made, people most likely fought, smoked pipes, and passed out soundly after a hard and dangerous day’s work.

Now, aside from the sounds of our voices and movements, the place is quiet. It can only speak through what remains.  Or is that really so?

As we explore, the energy feels thick, like the hewed beams littering the site. We are excited to set up camp. There, on our first night, with our tent set up, enjoying some nice reconstituted trail dinners, we have a plan. In the midst of what was once a busy mining camp, separated only by time – we hope to ask some questions.

One response to “Ghosts Of Mining Past”

  1. […] As we fight to reclaim our rightful access, two voices can now be heard from the top of the mountain on some days and certain nights. The sound of hammering too; and it ain’t Ghosts Of Mining Past. […]


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