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Dale & Debbie Part 41 - Nevada

Dale & Debbie Part 41 - Nevada

20th Dec 2023

Moving on to Caliente, NV...
Historic Pioche & Cathedral Gorge State Park

After leaving Kanab we headed for Caliente, NV. There are several state parks in that area we wanted to visit. We passed many snowy mountains along the way. Then we began seeing hills, valleys and fields.
Some of these photos were taken at one of the state parks and some in a nearby valley.
Pioche was a silver mining boomtown in the 1800’s. The aerial tramway operated in the 1920’s and 1930’s carrying ore from Treasure Hill to the mill in the valley. Pioche was practically a ghost town by 1900, but during World War II, profitable lead-zinc deposits were developed.
Our next stop was a visit to Boot Hill Cemetery. A portion of the town’s cemetery was sectioned off where outlaws were buried separately from respectable folks. The sign read, "Crime was rampant in Pioche in the early 1870's during the first few years of Pioche's boom days it was said that 72 men 'were buried with their boots on' before anyone died of natural causes. Many of these men are buried in this old Boot Hill Cemetery."
There are many wooden grave markers with interesting carvings. Some say things such as who killed them, why they were killed, how many times they were shot, and more. One man was shot in a dispute over a dog.
The cost estimated to build this Court House (located in Pioche) in 1871 was $26,600. By the time it was completed a year later, costs had escalated to more than $88,000 due to alterations, cost overruns, mismanagement, and kickbacks. To finance it, the Board of Commissioners issued certificates of indebtedness at high interest rates. When the final payment was made in 1937, four years after the building had been condemned, the total cost of the courthouse was nearly $1,000,000. Now that’s a sad story!
We ventured out to a very remote state park (via a 28 mile dirt and gravel road) because so many reviews said it was such a beautiful and peaceful place. We didn’t see the beauty they were speaking of, so much so that I’m not even going to share any photos. We had planned to hike, but the trails were in terrible condition.

In addition to our disappointment, we got a flat tire! Dale had to pump it up 9 times before we got back. He couldn’t fix it so he took it to the only garage in town. It took them more than a day to look at it, but they were able to patch it. So far, so good! I told Dale we need to stay off those dirt/sand/gravel roads, but he won’t.
Here we are at a nearby state park. We saw a huge cottonwood tree and some wildlife.
I had no idea where we were hiking on this day. We walked way up a wash and then Dale pointed up and told me that's where we were going. The views were great from the top, but my favorite was on our way up. I like the distant mountains against the threatening skies and the green valley with the brighter foreground.
We saw this "rock head" on our descent. The sky really changed, but the stormed stayed on the other side of the ridge.
Cathedral Gorge State Park is the one we particularly wanted to see. And it did not disappoint! The photo below does not look like it was taken in the same park as the others, but it was.
Cathedral Gorge is known for its many cathedral-like spires and cave-like formations. They are also referred to as moon caves and slots. Some are like mazes inside; they all come to a dead end and are rather short. The photo on the left is one of the many openings we entered for exploration. This area began as piles of ash from volcanic eruptions and eroded into these dramatic patterns in the soft bentonite clay. Come along on our photo tour and see for yourself!
We also hiked above looking down on the valley, but it was not nearly as impressive. There were some wildflowers on the valley floor.