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Bodie ghosts

Goto pictures of Bodie, CaliforniaThis past weekend I traveled to Bodie, California’s only Gold Rush ghost town. Nestled in a grassy meadow in the high Sierras about 75 miles from Lake Tahoe, the town stands frozen in a state of arrested decay with clapboard buildings spitting nails under a blisting sun.

1800s gold miners braved isolation, fires, disease, -40 Farenheit winters with 20-foot snows, dynamite accidents, gunfights, and stabbings to work their claims worth $35 to $100 million in total, depending on whom you ask. The clothes, hats, boots, beds, blankets, dry goods, cans, bottles, dishes, games, toys, false teeth, glass eyes, tools, horse-drawn carriages, art, books, magazines, and other belongings of the miners and their families lie right where they left them as they fled violence and firestorms…or died.

The town is still. The leaning houses & outhouses, church, town bank, hotel, bar, general store, cemetary, morgue where you can see tiny coffins lined up for babies, and Chinatown where murdering gunslingers smoked opium, gambled, and screwed hookers stand in eerie quiet. All you hear is wind in the grass and your boots in the gravel. Several times I peered through a dusty window and could swear I saw movement—a shadow, maybe, or a face darting from view. I loved it though it smelled of death.

E.S.P. overload.

Photos are posted here.

One Response to “Bodie ghosts”

  1. Broseph Says:

    Cool picture of you in the doorway. Kinda looks like an album cover you’d find from a 1970′s rock band – like the Eagles, Zep, or the Who.

    Good Times. Except the hair wasn’t invented until the mid-eighties when Sr. Billy Idol made it vogue. So, maybe find an old seventies male long hair wig and do a little photo shop fix up with the pix of you in the door way; and voila, you can say you were in a groovy rock band called the tailors.

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