Who wants to take a road trip?  Who wants to explore the Wild West for real? Who wants to see ghost towns in the middle of nowhere, Nevada and drive down long, winding old highways or dusty, rocky dirt roads? We can stop to take photographs whenever we choose and investigate these abandoned buildings. We’ll visit the one-horse towns that are just barely clinging to life and have some coffee while talking with the locals. We can drive all day or all night listening to good road trips songs. And we will camp under the stars at night.

Who’s in? Of course, we’ll have no fear of trespassing on private property or strangers or unstable buildings or getting lost beyond the map.  

…and back to reality. I know there are such things as private property laws and there are many dangers about getting lost in the desert, but that doesn’t stop me from daydreaming about ghost towns and empty highways and untouched buildings.  Of course, the idea of exploring ghost towns brings up other issues such as trespassing, preservation, visitors, and many others. Feel free to add more concerns, readers.

I’ll save for that for another time. The romanticism of road trips and the middle of nowhere will always be an inspiration for me, regardless of fact vs. fiction. For now I’d just like to think about the ghost towns and the (unknown) stories associated with them. From photographing these places and theorizing who lived there and when and why they left, the entertainment for this preservationist never ends. There is just something about the radio, open windows, sunglasses, good company, and trying to figure out which direction we’re headed, that I will always love. Hopefully this summer will allow for a road trip.

In the meantime, there are many web sites and blogs out there with ghost town travel tales.  I recommend Bonneville Mariner (click on the “ghost towns” category).  Or check out Ghost Town Gallery, where you can click on the interactive map and see photographs from the town.

 What about you? What do you romanticize?


3 thoughts on “Wanderlust

  1. thedailycrazy says:

    Awesome – you’ve fired my imagination there. I romanticize about smuggling hang-outs. The sort of small country pubs/inns you get in old fishing villages over here in England. Close enough to a shingle beach to roll the barrels of illicit liquor off from a night-landing, up the lane and down in to the secret room at the back of the cellar. From the back of the room a sloping passageway doubtless leads back up in to the cliff behind the houses until it opens out in to a large cavern.

    It easiest to romanticize about smuggling on a cold and murky night, holed up in the pub, with the tendrils of an impenetrable seafog clawing at the window panes…

    Read Moonfleet by J. Falkner – published 1898 – a cracking smugglers’ tale to get you in the mood 🙂

  2. Kelly says:

    oh ghost towns and the old west! They are romantic, and fascinating, and there’s a little bit everywhere you look!

    And their stories are great, but sometimes create their own challenges- Brunkhow, one of the area’s early settlers, buried his gold under the fireplace in his little adobe cabin, or so the story goes. It draws attention and visitors, but also looters, digging under the walls (and destroying the building!) and hunting for that gold!

    If you make it out this way, I’ll show you around some of my favorite sites!

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