We led a small group of friends on one of our favorite runs in the Last Chance Canyon area. We usually run this route “backwards”, starting in Goler Gulch which begins just off Charlie Road above Garlock, about 3 miles west of I395.
Making our way up Sand Gulch and through “The Narrows”, is a fairly easy 4×4 route but we like to stop at a short (about 200 yards) extra-credit offshoot (located here: https://goo.gl/maps/AkjTVUSWeaF2 ). It’s a small ledge followed by a fairly rocky section. It’s mildly difficult, not appropriate for stock vehicles and is the most difficult 4×4 section of the day, harder than even the hardest spots in Last Chance Canyon which we would be hitting at the end of the day.
From there we cut across Mormon Flat and headed over to Holland Camp, then went down to EP11 following it over to Burro Schmidt Tunnel where we stopped for lunch. The road between Holland Camp is mostly in good condition, but depending on which route you choose, you may run into a couple of steep hills. Of course, that’s the way we always go!
From Burro Schmidt Tunnel we headed down the hill over toward Bickel Camp then around the mountain to Bonanza Gulch to check out the old Bonanza Gulch Post Office .
We then made our way over to the Old Dutch Cleanser mine – an amazing spot overlooking Last Chance Canyon. The huge tunnels that honeycomb the mountain are amazing. We brought Jumpin Jill with us on this run and it was her first time here so she had to jump.
We spent a while exploring the mine and made it all the way to the bottom where there is a connecting tunnel that runs the length of the mine, at least 1/2 mile long.
From the old Dutch Cleanser mine we made our way past the Holly Ash mine but didn’t stop because it’s fenced off, and not as large or as interesting as the Old Dutch Cleanser mine and continued down into Last Chance Canyon for the 4 mile drive back down to Redrock Randsburg Road. The road is mostly flat and fairly well maintained but there are several rough and rocky spots that would be a serious challenge for a stock 4×4 vehicle or inexperienced driver – and of course then there is Graduation Hill. And yes, Graduation Hill IS as steep as it looks in the photos. We’ve been down it half-a-dozen times and it still makes us stop and think about it before we head down!
After the knee-shaking stopped after Graduation Hill, there were just a few more rough areas to make it through, but for what we think was the first time ever, we finished the day before dark and got to enjoy the beautiful sunset while airing back up.