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Swansea to Cerro Gordo

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Swansea to Cerro Gordo

Post by Morrie » Wed Jun 05, 2019 8:16 am

Anyone been on the Swansea road to Burgess Mine and then to Cerro Gordo this season yet?

D.A. Wright
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Re: Swansea to Cerro Gordo

Post by D.A. Wright » Wed Jun 05, 2019 10:07 am

I haven’t been recently, but in my experience summer monsoon thunderstorms do more to rearrange the trail than melting snow.

Boiler Canyon, in my opinion, is easier run toward Cerro Gordo. The descent has a lot of loose shale, drops nearly 1500 feet in 1.5 miles, is off camber along much of it. Every time I descended, in places I was in a controlled slide (low range 1st gear, no brakes, wheels turning and sliding). The climb out toward Cerro Gordo is gentler. Conditions change. An acquaintence with a Land Cruiser FJ60 and locked at both ends has run it both ways but has failed to make it out away from Cerro Gordo on occasion due to traction issues. A friend with a stock Wrangler YJ with BFG All Terrains never could climb it. I watched a couple of motorcycle riders try in vain to climb. The biggest problem is at the bottom where shale is deep and pocketed with a sharp turn, likely a lot of shale is brought down from above by vehicles. I’ve never attempted in my Tacoma TRD to climb out to the north.

The trail can easily be done in one day. Burgess and the tram summit station make fine overnight camps.

The Ridgecrest Gear Grinders help keep this trail in shape. Their website may have more current info.
D.A. Wright
~When You Live in Nevada, "just down the road" is anywhere in the line of sight within the curvature of the earth.

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Re: Swansea to Cerro Gordo

Post by Inyo » Fri Jul 12, 2019 4:53 pm

Folks visiting the Cerro Gordo district might want to check out my site, High Inyo Mountains Fossils , California, over at Some superior late Mississippian ammonoids (an extinct variety of cephalopod) and pelecypods (many preserved with both valves splayed open along the hinge line--very showy bivalves, indeed), plus shark teeth and even terrestrial plants can be found in the roughly 325 million year-old upper Mississippian Chainman Shale in the vicinty of Cerro Gordo ghost town. The page contains a detailed text, in addition to on-site images and photographs of representative paleontological specimens.

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