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Visiting This Small Gold Mining Town in Arizona Will Literally Transport You Back to the Wild West

Suny Errot

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Ghost town getaways can be one of the most fulfilling experiences you’ll have if you actually know where to go. There are literally thousands of abandoned mines and surrounding communities throughout Arizona. You’ve probably already heard of Jerome and Bisbee when the subject of ghost towns in Arizona come to light. But, there are also less popular ones you need to look at. The Goldfield Ghost Town is also rich in history, and has a lot to offer for all curious travelers. It’s time to explore this place!

The Goldfield Ghost Town is the Gateway to the Legendary Superstition Mountains

goldfield mining towns in arizona

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The Goldfield was once situated on a hilltop close to the Superstition Mountains, and the Goldfield Mountains literally struck gold back in the 1890s. As you know, it is considered a highly valuable material, so many miners naturally went here to do some digging. Some curious people also just came over because of the booming mining activities. It wasn’t long until a town developed in 1893. Goldfield was complete with saloons, a general store, a boarding house, brewery, school, official post office, and blacksmith shop. It wasn’t anything fancy or grand, but these were the essential amenities any resident needs. The place had hope and potential for a brighter future. It even looked like Goldfield would outgrow Mesa. Unfornately, things went downhill in the town a few years down the line. Gold became scarce, and the quality of the gold found here significantly dropped.

This led to miners eventually leaving the place in search of better mining prospects. As a result, the town died a slow painful death. There was an attempt to bring back the life of this place. The town did come to life on and off from 1910 until 1926. However, negligible gold output only forced people to abandon the town again.

But what do you do with an abandoned place?

goldfield az historic places

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You look for someone who holds a deep interest for its fascinating story. A man by the name of Robert F. “Bob” Schoose likes abandoned places or ghost towns. He was also fascinated by the mining history of Goldfield that he decided to take a chance with this one. He bought a few acres of this area and transformed it into a Wild West tourist spot. It only started with a mining tunnel and a snack bar, but eventually developed into something more.

Today, the Goldfield Ghost Town is the gateway to the legendary Superstition Mountains.

Go Back to the Riveting Days of the Wild West

Stroll through the dusty land of Goldfield Ghost Town and discover why travelers from all over the world visit this town! The place promises the grandeur and excitement of Arizona’s wild west. But of course, it comes with a twist. You can do all sorts of fun activities here because now there are mine walks, train rides, and even ziplining. A visit here is all you need if you want to learn more about one of Arizona’s most fascinating history. You will also find several individuals walking around in periodic costumes. It definitely gives an authentic feel to the town!

What Can You Do at Goldfield Ghost Town?

Goldfield ghost town Arizona where to go

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There are lots of activities you can do here. You just need to choose what’s best for you and your family.

  • Goldfield Mine Tours. Nothing beats going on an underground mine tour in Arizona. This activity is one of the most popular activities in Goldfield Ghost Town because it’s exciting, and you will be fascinated by life in the mines. There are knowledgeable guides who will accompany you, and they’ll gill you in on everything you need to know.
  • Superstition Zipline. This is just a recent addition at Goldfield Ghost Town, but it’s already so popular with all guests. It’s safe to say many enjoy the high-flying adventure provided by a zipline. See the area from a whole new perspective and be in awe of the town, mountains, and desert views while you’re up in the air.
  • Superstition Narrow Gauge Railroad. Train rides are fun rides! The Superstition Narrow Gauge Railroad lets you sit in the passenger car while you go around town for a 20-minute ride. The guide will also give you interesting stories or information about the Superstition Mountains too.
  • Goldfield’s Historic Museum. History junkies and museum lovers will definitely appreciate a visit to this museum. The place has many interesting exhibits about the town, the mining days and the mountains. But since it’s close to the Superstition Mountains, it’s only fair that the most popular exhibit is that of the Lost Dutchman gold mine. There are also some Native American artifacts in the museum’s collection.
  • Superstition’s O.K. Corral Stables. Sometimes, a horse ride in a beautiful area is what you need to de-stress. When you are out in the wild west, you might as well try Superstition’s O.K. Corral Stables. You can explore the mountainous area on horseback accompanied by a guide. Ride into the wilderness! We’re sure you’ll love the scenic trails.
  • Goldfield Gunfighters. Okay, take cover! There is a gunfight! Well, not really. The Goldfield Gunfighters is just a staged act that transports you to the sets of a western. Watch this amazing reenactment for free along the boardwalks. The action between the cowboys taking over the street and the good men who are trying to maintain law and order is just too exciting. The gunfight also seems real, and the gunshots will definitely surprise you.

There Are Also Other Cool Attractions!

Lu Lu’s Bordello arizona

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Some other attractions at Goldfield Ghost Town are worth checking out as well.

  • Superstition Reptile Exhibit. Head over to the base of the Superstition Mountains and visit the Superstition Live Reptile Exhibit! There are many reptiles & invertebrates on display and you will be interested in the species and all other animals.
  • Eagle Eye Shooting Gallery. If you like shooting interactive targets, then this one is for you. The Eagle Eye Shooting Gallery gives you great fun, and is guaranteed to make you laugh. It will be really fun for special occasions such as birthday parties. Before you go, you might also want to check out the unique guns, bullet, and bling items for sale.
  • The Mystery Shack. Conquer the ghostly pool-table that refuses to let you hit the balls straight. You’ll find many objects hanging from the ceiling at 45 degree angles no matter how hard you push them back.
  • Gold Panning at Prospector’s Palace. Learn how to properly pan for real gold with a true gold historian. You can just make a stop at the Prospector’s Palace for a good time! Any gold you find is yours to keep, provided of course, that these are small slivers, not nuggets.
  • Lu Lu’s Bordello. This is a short tour that gives you a glimpse of the history of the women of the 1800s, both good and bad. You will also get an insight as to what it would be like if women travel into the west, leaving the lives they lived in the east behind them. There are also the “Floozy’s,” or the girl guides who will lead the tour.

Lastly, you should visit the Mammoth Steakhouse & Saloon and try the famous Mammoth Burgers. They also have the juiciest steaks that are very mouthwatering, and coldest drinks that will save you from the Arizona heat.

Just Got Back From Hiking? Well, This Is a Fun Stop on the Way Home

goldfield ghost town az reenactment gunfight

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Many Arizonans go hiking, but after that, the adventure is just over. Make a fun little stop on the way home by visiting Goldfield Ghost Town. If you have time, you can do a couple of activities before leaving. If not, then don’t forget to peek through the shops, or grab a tasty bite and a refreshing drink from the saloon. You are free to immerse yourself in the surroundings and explore the place. This is literally a cool gem located on the edge of town. And for a “ghost town,” it’s actually pretty alive. 100% family fun is guaranteed!

Note: The attractions and retail stores at Goldfield Ghost Town just reopened. But the management encourages its guests to still practice social distancing and the guidelines set forth by CDC and various health organizations. Please wear a mask when in close proximity to others, and make sure to regularly disinfect your hands.

Schedule:

Merchants: Open from 10 am to 5 pm
Bakery: Open from 9 am to 5 pm
Saloon: Open from 11 am to 9 pm (daily)

Location: 4650 N. Mammoth Mine Rd, Apache Junction, Arizona 85119
Website: http://goldfieldghosttown.com/

If you like visiting ghost towns, you should check out this town that was once called “the wicked-est city in the west.” There is also a small town in Northwestern Arizona off the historic Route 66 with lots of great stories to tell.

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