Beatty Nevada and Rhyolite Ghost Town


What? : The small town of Beatty NV is located on the crossroads of Hwy. 95 and State Route 374. Beatty offers easy access to Death Valley National Park with few motel options. Just out of Beatty you will find the remaining of Rhyolite Ghost Town from the early 1900 and explore the art at the nearby Goldwell Open Air Museum.


Where? : On U.S. Highway 95, Beatty lies about 120 miles Northwest of LAs Vegas, and 90 miles South of Tonopah.

Google Map Link


When? : The recommended time to visit here is late fall, winter and early spring, summer is just too hot.


Due note 1: Always have enough water with you !


Due note 2: I came here to see Rhyolite Ghost Town; I did not find interest things to do in Beatty although I read that you can explore this old mining area with a lot of off-road trails. This is excellent place to get gas and resupply before driving to the Death Valley.


Due note 3: There is very little shade anywhere in Death Valley so use Sunscreen even in winter months.


Due note 4: There are no facilities in Rhyolite, always bring enough water with you.


Due note 5: when visiting or hiking at the Death Valley use several layers as clothing. You can start your day with cold temperatures during early morning sunrise to a very hot midday (even at fall, winter, and spring). At the afternoon it can warm but at sunset temperature plumage and it can be near freezing.


My thoughts: I like my short stop at Rhyolite Ghost Town. It was on my way back to the Death Valley. The few art statues, the buttle house and the remaining buildings of Rhyolite.


The visit:


Established in 1905, Beatty NV became a center for the Bullfrog Mining District. Today, after closing of the mines, this town offer motels and other road services to the passing tourists.


I came here mainly to visit the nearby Rhyolite Ghost Town and to drive from here to the Death Valley National Park.


You should plan for 1 hour visit that cover both Rhyolite Ghost Town and walk among the Goldwell Open Air Museum statues.


Rhyolite Ghost Town:

Where: From Beatty, Nevada, Take highway 374 West for 4 miles. Rhyolite Road is paved, and entrance will be on your right. Additional 1.5 miles drive up the hill will bring you into the center of the ruins.

This location is access is by any car.


In 1904 the gold-rush to this area started and several camps were set up in Bullfrog area, and the city of Rhyolite was formed.

There were over 2000 mining claims Rhyolite townsite immediately boomed with population. Many buildings were built including 3 stories tall, hotels, stores, a school for 250 children, an ice plant, two electric plants, foundries, machine shops, restaurants, and even a miner’s union hospital. In 1906 a miner built a Bottle House out of 50,000 beer and liquor bottles.

This boomtown declined as rapidly as it came to life. The end started at the financial panic of 1907, during the next few years mines start to get clos and banks and other supported business failed. The power companies shut down the electricity powering Rhyolite in 1914. This last move drove remaining residents out of town.


Today you can find only several remnants of Rhyolite glory days. Along the main road for most buildings only few walls are standing without much to see. The train depot near the end of the road is one of the few buildings left in the town, and the Bottle House on the left side of the road.

Although not inside the Death Valley National Park I did find a NP web page about this location:


Goldwell Open Air Museum:

Just when you are driving up the hill into Rhyolite main road you will see on your left side few statues in the open.

1984 Belgian artist Albert Szukalski created his interpretation of The Last Supper sculpture. Today, this outdoor sculpture garden is known as the Goldwell Open Air Museum.

This is a private open museum, and you are welcome to park your car and walk among the statues.

This is a short 15-minute stop.


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