February 17th - Road Trip to the "Desert Bar"

Several weeks ago on an RV Forum I participate in had a reference to a bar in the middle of the desert, off the grid and a great place to visit. I looked it up online and realized it was not that far from where I am currently camped for the winter, so I started watching the website and Facebook page for when they would be open and if there were any special activities planned.

Well yesterday was the day I was waiting for. They have an annual event which kind of kicks of their Spring season. They call it the Desert Dash and it is a 5K run, walk, bike, crawl from a location not far off the main highway and down the 5 mile dirt road that leads to the bar. The term road is used loosely, it resembles a road in that it is sometimes wide enough for two cars to pass each other and it has been graded at some point in time. However, I saw two people in standard automobiles changing tires along the way. It is rough and can easily damage a normal car tire. There were a couple times I was worried about my 10 ply All Terrain tires on my truck. I didn't need 4 wheel drive except at one point when I moved off the road to allow a regular passenger car to pass coming the other way hogging the middle of the "road"!

For me it was about a 100 miles each way with the last 6 miles on the dirt road...it was an adventure to say the least and great fun!

History of the Desert Bar
Ken Coughlin, founder of this saloon, built the Desert Bar at the site of an old copper mining camp in 1975. Although all remnants of the original camp are gone, its spirit lives; its parking lot is located directly on the site where the mining camp once stood. At first, the saloon was a three-sided enclosed room, not much bigger than a small storage shed. Today, while maintaining its Old West character, Coughlin has expanded it substantially.

The bar has a website and you can see it HERE!

Some more good reading and history HERE!

Parker Arizona Rotary Presents the 20th Annual Buckskin Mountain Desert Dash. This is a 5 mile mountain bike-5K run - 5K fitness walk out to the Nellie E Saloon aka The Desert Bar. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT the course runs through the Buckskin Mountains. The course is a graded road. This course lends itself not to a race but to a test of determination and adaptability. Vehicles will be parked at the registration area or continue to the Nellie E. Saloon finish line. THE COURSE WILL BE CLOSED TO ALL NON-AUTHORIZED TRAFFIC FROM 9:45 AM TO 11:00 AM. Since this is the only route, vehicles must be off the course by the 9:45 AM closure. Transportation will not be provided from the Nellie E Saloon finish line back to the parking (start) area.

Needless to say, I took some pictures around the bar and the desert to and from!

First thing I did was check the morning sky for any bad weather headed my way...clear as a bell and beautiful!

A cactus along the road.

Now for some scenes around the bar and party after the Desert Dash!

It was a great road trip and a fun time. If you are ever in Northern Arizona during the winter you must plan on a trip out to this place on a weekend as that is the only time it is open.

On another note - I have put a link to my latest publication - "Seasons in The Mist" about my last 6 seasons guiding in Alaska! The link is in the upper right corner of this blog or HERE! Feel free to preview it and order one if you are so inclined. It is published in a magazine format!

Capt. Jim - "The Gypsy"

Traveling and photographing the Southwest

No comments:

Post a Comment