Saturday, February 25, 2012

New Views, New Horizons … Deep Holes

One thing that it is hard to miss in this part of Arizona are the many huge, open-pit mines.  I have seen massive mine pits near Bisbee, Ajo, Superior, Miami, Globe, and other places that I have likely forgotten.  Some of them, like Bisbee, and Ajo are largely abandoned, but there are still some going strong.  One of these is near Kearny, and I could see bits of it from my camp on the hilltop about 10 miles away.  So I drove over for a look one day.P2191730

Only a little confusing to have the Visitor’s access point – right beside the ‘no trespassing’ sign?  On the way to the viewpoint, I had a look at some of the pipe they have laying around.  This stuff was huge, with walls 2” thick, and about 2 feet in diameter.


When you get to the actual viewpoint, you have to look down. Way down!  Even then you can’t even see the deepest part of the pit!  Did I say massive?  On Google Earth, the total size of the pit and tailings pond measures 10km (6 miles) long, and about 4km (2.5 miles) wide.  And that is 2006 imagery, so who knows if it is even larger now!


Those are huge excavators and giant rock trucks on the far side!


Meanwhile, back at camp, Hailey has a full time job keeping the wildlife ‘wild’. CIMG7600 CIMG7601And I filled up a bag with garbage (trash, they call it down here) from all around the campsite. This was red-neck garbage, not RV’er garbage.  It was mostly broken bottles, cans, shotgun shells, and plastic bottles.  There was a solar powered stock watering trough nearby, though I never saw any evidence of cows.  I noticed the tank had screens installed to allow small critters to get out after a swim.


I also checked out  the larger tower in the neighbourhood.


And found that some of the cactus and other vegetation was beginning to flower.


My iPhone app led me to a nearby geocache.


After all that was taken care of and things were in order, there was nothing left to do but hook up, and head ‘down’ the road again.



  1. I wonder if the fruits on that cactus are edible, like prickly pears. Love the pict of Hailey in the drawer. She's quite a model.

  2. I was just at that mine overlook on Thursday. How did I miss you? It is truly an amazing sight.

  3. I would find it interesting to see one of those large open pit mines in actual operation. Usually one has to use an uneducated mining imagination to visualize all the workings. I hear there's some pretty nice country over there around Kearney. I think we were close to there a couple years ago on our way up to Apache Junction. Hailey sure likes her trees:))

  4. We enjoyed the cactus pictures Ivan. Yes that is a big hole in the ground fascinating.