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You are here: Home : Hiking Last Updated on 08/04/2002    
Diff: Rating 4/10
Scenic: Rating 6/10
Tech: Rating 4/10
Silver King Mine
         in the Calico Hills above Calico Ghost Town
Location: Barstow Area, Mojave Desert, Southern California
Region: Barstow Region
Wilderness: None
Total Distance: 3 Mi
Season: Year-round
Type: Wandering
Start Elev: 2,600 Ft
Total Time: 3 hr

Hike added by
on 08/04/2002
Driving Directions
From Southern California, head north on Interstate 15 to Barstow California. Follow the signs and exit at the appropriate spot for Calico Ghost Town. When you are getting close to the Ghost Town, pull onto one of the dirt roads and find a suitable place to park.
From your parking spot near Calico Ghost Town, hike up above the Ghost Town to the hill with the large white "Calico" sign on it. Just above the base of this hill and in front of and below the Calico sign is the entrance to the mine. There is another entrance up higher just below the Calico sign. You can reach the upper entrance by going through the mine and exiting here too.
The mine is very large and has many levels. As long as you make sure you have pleanty of light to last you a while and backup lights in case something goes wrong with your main lights, there is no problem of finding your way out of the place thanks to the numerous markings on the walls. It's a lot of fun inside the mine. There are large steep ladders that take you up some of the steepest slopes, one of the ladders was maybe 80 feet long. There was one spot where there was a drop-off in the middle of a walkway that went way down to the lower lever maybe 50 feet below. The mine is very dusty inside and the dust is a clay dust that will stick to all of your clothing and choke you up a little. It's like a whole world inside there though and very comfortable temperature during the heat of the summer. Headlamps are very useful and hard hats would have been nice to have. There was one spot where there was about a 20 foot drop to a lower level. There was a ladder to get down there but it was difficult to get onto and was broken. There was also this metal chute with a pipe running down the center. I took the pipe down through the chute and the room didn't really go anywhere so I climbed the pipe back up out of the chute, that was fun, but I caught my jeans on a nail in the chute and put a hole in them.

On this occasion, there was no water inside the mine. Navigation was easy but very dusty no matter how slow we moved. The distance quoted above is an estimate and probably not too accurate. It's hard to know how far you're going when you're inside of a mine.
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