It was time to explore some of the history of the area. I had done my research by searching the web and looked at aerials. I was ready I thought. My first stop would be Clair Camp up Pleasant Canyon by Ballarat. I stopped at Ballarat and confirmed with the friendly store proprietor that my truck could make it with no problem. I bought a cold drink to help “pay” for this information and left to go see Clair Camp.
Up I drove into Pleasant Canyon. It was a slow go, with the road being very rocky. This was OK but it was rather tedious requiring I constantly watch the road. And as I looked ahead I saw a road carved into the hillside with a shear drop off on one side. That type of road is my ultimate irrational fear of the worst road to drive on. That must be a different road I convinced myself. But I was wrong, the road I was on ventured up the side of a canyon. Me – no go. No way. I turned around and left without making it to Clair Camp. My research had been less than perfect.
My next venture was to go see a hole in the ground. Yup – a hole in the ground. An oddity. A label on my map had perked my interest. I had done some research on how to possibly get to the site. Off I went. The road wasn’t too bad. I came to a Y and had to make an educated guess on which way to go. I guessed correctly. Eventually the road ended and when I got out of the truck I realized I was at the hole.
I found out some information about the hole. Briefly the story is that in the early 1960s a drill rig was lowered into the hole and drilled sixty holes. No meteoritic material was found and a firm bottom was not found in the center. Later a 6 ft x 5 ft timber shaft was built to a depth of 100 feet. It did not reach a firm bottom or find meteoritic material. The conclusion is that the hole appears to be caused by either a limestone sink or by a penetrating meteoritic mass (not explosive) moving at a slow velocity.
Not an exciting find, but a fun venture.
My final venture was to see the Minnietta Mine. I wish I had spent more time exploring, but I had left my old dog in the truck and didn’t want to leave him for too long. The last mile of road was drivable at 5 mph, but I enjoyed walking instead.
And during any trip to any new place, I find pleasure in looking at the details.
Ruth Bartron said:
I think my dad took our family to some of these spots in my early sixties. I loved the rocks but wasn’t crazy about the long hours in the back seat with my little sister in brother.