A once robust mining town founded in the late 1800’s, this town got it’s nickname the “Widow Maker”, due to the large amount of men that perished mining the hills for gold.
History of Delamar
John Ferguson and Joseph Sharp were the first to discover the secret stash of gold hiding in the hills of Delamar. Soon after, a mining camp was established near the now defunct Monkeywrench Mine.
The town expanded rapidly. They first added a post office and a newspaper publication was born shortly thereafter in 1894. Quick growth led to a population of over 3,000 in just three short years, which lead to the town becoming the largest producer of ore in the State of Nevada.
Many of the buildings in the area were made of stone, remnants of which you can still see today hiking around the area.
Given the remoteness of the area, all supplies (including water) had to be brought to the bustling town. Visiting the remote area on a hot sun soaked day will leave you yearning for the comfort of air conditioning and a cool glass of lemonade, none of which would have been available to these hearty souls in the 1900’s.
Down the mountain road, you can also stop and visit the two graveyards populated with past local residents.
What does Delamar Look like today?
All that remains of Delamar today is the remants of a once bustling community. When the gold ran out, so did the town. You’ll find rusted out cars, piles of brightly colored glass debris and crumbling stone structures.
When we visited, there was only one other car parked on the dusty road. Some adventurous souls still visit Delamar for shooting practice and to explore the now defunct mine shafts in the area (neither of which should be attempted), but it’s largely abandoned as a tourist attraction.
Know before you go:
- There are no ZERO services in the “town” of Delamar. It’s a ghost town and there is no one around.
- The old mine shafts are closed for a reason. Do NOT venture inside them. They are unstable and you’re likely to get yourself killed. Plus, it’s illegal.
- The road is rocky, bumpy and not well maintained. A Honda Civic isn’t going to get you up there. In fact, if you don’t have an SUV or a truck with 4-wheel drive, do yourself a favor and STAY HOME. Those vehicles could still get stuck and good luck getting help out there. I can’t picture a typical tow truck making it up there.
- Cell phone service is basically non-existent at Delamar (and in the surrounding areas.) Maybe it has to do with the nearby Nevada Testing and Training Range that you definitely aren’t visiting.
- If you want snacks and water, you better take it with you.
- If something happens and you need to get help, you’re looking at a 12+ mile hike down uneven terrain to potentially flag someone down on U.S. 93.
Still want to go?
Should you visit the Delamar Mining Town?
Rating: 2.0 Mooses
If you love history and getting off the beaten path, this is definitely the place for you! If you don’t have an off-road vehicle, are scared of tumbling off a highly questionable mountain “road” and need to have official signs of the historic significance of an area, I would recommend skipping this one. On the positive side, the views of the hillside on a clear day are absolutely stunning.
Verdict: Skip unless you’re a hardcore history buff and adventurer.