The Ghosts of Rhyolite and Goldwell

Ghostly figures form a last supper scene. They are made from plaster soaked sheets draped over posed people and left to dry and harden.

High-five to Highway 95

Road sign features ghost with bicycle
Ghost towns and wild west works of art spiked our adventures along a lonely stretch of Nevada highway.

We decided to avoid California Interstates and drive Highway 95, since we had only a few days to get from Arizona to the Bay Area in California. The California 55 mph-when-towing rule had nothing to do with our decision, since we barely do 62-1/2 anyway. The ride was mostly smooth, and other vehicles were few and far between.

Beatty is a fun little place worthy of at least a couple of days worth of adventuring. We had only one day, so we chose a quick drive to see Rhyolite, a ghost town, and Goldwell, an open-air art museum right next door. Scotty’s Castle would have made a full day, but the access road is still closed after some flood damage. After we left, we discovered Goldwell is actually a Harvest Host location, so I will add Boondocks tohe tag list! Check out this amazing little town and all it has to offer here.

Ghostly figure made from a draped plaster soaked sheet seems to hold out an artists palette as if to share.
Join us?

Ghosty figure holds bicycle as if ready to climb on for a ride.

Next stop Hawthorne. Our plan was to spend three nights here and take a day trip up the east side of the Sierra Nevada to Bodie, a ghost town kept in an arrested state of decay by the State of California. A blowout and some damage control rearranged our plans. We had to detour over to the Gardnerville/Carson City area for our Bodie trip. Read about our Bodie adventure next!

plaster cast of face with artistic bits of glass, sand and amber resin added into mold
Interpretation is up to the viewer, but in this case curiosity caused a call. The faces sleeping under a sphere, not pictured, were cast by resident artist Megan Roberts of Ithaca, NY. The sphere was a prop from a play presented by Cockroach Theatre of Las Vegas at the Red Barn in 2008. Goldwell Open Air Museum Host Richard Stephens joined them into a ghostly installation.
House made from glass bottles on their sides with gray mortar between them. Windowsill is wood.
Glass House of Rhyolite.


Where we parked our home on wheels
View of desert trees from under an archway in an old building built of large sand-colored bricks.
Rhyolite train depot, hotel or? From the faded signs, this was even a circus-like attraction at one point in time.


We stopped at these RV parks rather than boon docking or staying in primitive campgrounds due to the blasting summer heat.
Cal-Nev Ari
Large level sites, easy in and out. Arrogant and unfriendly clerk in the store, where one goes to pay, and Passport America discount is no good if store is closed, which it was Sunday at 3:30 p.m. Just pay the $23 and avoid the clerk. We didn’t linger.

Beatty RV Park
Basic RV Park, easy in and out for Big Rig. Clean. Antenna TV and Verizon were okay. $25 in July 2018. Great place for a couple of days of rest and recreation.

Whisky Flats RV Park, Hawthorne
Basic RV park, easy in and out for big rig, although there were a couple of spots we thought we’d scrape bottom. Clean park. Antenna TV and Verizon were okay. Only Good Sam discount offered, and the clerk didn’t care if we were unhappy with that club or not. Some folks would have given us a senior discount or a goodwill one just for general purposes, but not here, It was $34.10 in July 2018.

Antique knob and tube wiring for an overhead light bulb. No bulb in the little black socket.
Old knob and tube electrical still hangs around in Rhyolite.

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