Revisiting an Abandoned Mine

Congress, AZ

When we made a brief visit to this area three years ago, we drove north of Congress to check out an abandoned mine and some Crested Saguaros in the area.  So a few days ago we drove back out there to revisit the site.

To get there we drove four miles north of Congress on Rte. 89.  Just past the frog (a large painted rock on the west side of the highway) we turned right on to Stanton Road.

After four miles on the dirt road we turned left at a For Sale sign and headed up a narrow, rough road for about a mile.  A high clearance vehicle is needed for this part of the drive.

The road ends at a gate, with the mine area just a hundred yards ahead.

Looking west from the mine area with the Jeep parked at the gate

There are a couple of mines in the area but one entrance in the hillside is open for a bit of careful exploration.

A young miner heads to work

The miner poses before heading in deeper

You can just see his legs as the young man heads deeper

An old table 25 yards into the mine

Of course, one of us was very intent on spotting the Crested Saguaros we had seen during our previous visit.  One is located along Stanton Road just before the For Sale sign.  Later, when we reviewed our photos, we found that we had a shot of it from about the same spot as the earlier visit.  The comparison allows us to see the growth of the crest over the past three years.  The photo on the left below was taken in February of 2013, the one on the right was taken this week.


There is one very large crest up near the mine that we particularly wanted to see.  Again, when we returned to the motorhome and compared pictures we found that we had a shot of this large Saguaro from exactly the same location.  Even the Jeep was in the same spot in both photos!



This guy didn’t seem to change much, but he is still magnificent.

Next up is a trip up to Prescott.  More on that later . . .

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21 Responses to Revisiting an Abandoned Mine

  1. Sue says:

    It is neat to see the growth on the smaller crested. The big one -wow! Its real and its spectacular…

  2. Dick says:

    Went in an old mine near Salome. Had a head light on and ran into bats flying every where, But they must have had their radar working as done hit me, but came very close.

  3. libertatemamo says:

    That last Saguaro looks like a sculpture. Wow!

  4. geogypsy2u says:

    I hope that brave young miner had a flashlight. Surprising how much that first crested grew in just three years compared to the second one. All the winters I lived in Yarnell and I never saw either of these. But then I didn’t own a 4×4.

  5. Laurel says:

    Hey, that young miner isn’t wearing regulation gear! Where’s his hard hat? So interesting to see the growth of that young crested saguaro in just three years. I didn’t realize they grew that quickly!

  6. Very cool to be able to see noticeable changes in only three yeas!

    Ahhhh Prescott, love that area!

  7. Jim and Barb says:

    Now you need to go back in another 3 years to see how it has changed again!

  8. Jeff says:

    Great idea of looking up the old photos. We can see the some changes in the young saguaro, but the weather still looks the same!

  9. Sherry says:

    I think it is wonderful to revisit places I’ve been before and see not only the things I saw the first time and how they are different but also to see the thing I missed first time around. There’s something comforting and familiar about knowing where you are going. Love those Saguaro comparison pictures. The first one grew quite a bit I thought. Perhaps it is younger than that really magnificent second one.

    • placestheygo says:

      With this ever changing life on the road, I also enjoy returning to the familiar. It was great to see how healthy all four crested cacti were. The large one had grown quite a bit and actually looked much healthier this year.

  10. Maxxtrails says:

    It was great to see the pictures of the Saguaro side by side, they sure are magnificent looking!

  11. pmbweaver says:

    Cool cave.
    What a neat comparison of the cactus. The sky even looks the same…always clear and blue.
    Love the last photo. Looks like the cactus wants to hug Pam.

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