In 2021 we had a mountain adventure in Nevada to the ghost town of Logan City.
According to Lincoln County Tourism, this area of Nevada was home to the Southern Paiute when in 1863 Missionary William Hamblin scouted the area for settlements. A tribesman showed Hamblin some rocks that he called “panagari” or “panacker”, which turned out to be silver ore. Hamblin returned the next year and established claims in the region, then created the Meadow Valley Mining District.
The town of Logan was settled in 1865 after the discovery of silver on the eastern slope of Mount Irish, about 2.5 miles south of Mount Irish Peak. It was also known as Logan, Logan Springs, and Logans’ Springs due to a small spring called Logan Springs, which provided the necessary water for survival. Some reports indicate the original prospectors were driven away by the Paiute, however, they quickly returned and forced the tribe out of the area.
Within a few months of setting up, the mining camp had a population of over 100. There was a bit of excitement in 1866 when Nevada Governor Henry Blasdel along with 20 people decided to venture from Carson City with the intention of organizing Lincoln County at nearby Crystal Springs. During the trip, they made their way through Death Valley and ended up without supplies and food. One man died and others survived on lizards and other desert animals. Governor Blasdel and another man saved the group after racing to Logan City for supplies to get them to Crystal Springs. It would be another year before Lincoln County was organized, with Hiko in the valley below Logan City as the County Seat.
By 1868 a mill was built in Hiko to process the Logan City mining. That same year, Logan City gained a post office and had a population of 300.
Logan City’s population began to decline in 1869 due to the silver veins lacking depth, and new discoveries in Pioche. Declining further the town was abandoned and the Post Office closed by 1871.
Getting to the ghost town of Logan City is an adventure in itself. If you take Highway 318 out of Crystal Springs, and up to Nesbitt Lake, there is a dirt road through BLM land called Logan Canyon Road. You really should map it first, as you might not see it from the highway. A gate is at the entrance that asks you to close it on your way through. Hope you are in a high clearance vehicle with four-wheel drive for this adventure.
As you near the Mt. Irish Wilderness, you’ll find areas of Petroglyphs. There are some BLM markers nearby to help you find them, so be on the lookout.
Today, Logan City and Mount Irish Wilderness are frequented by off-road vehicles and hikers. There are several remains and ruins of the original settlement, mainly foundations. There is also a stone house that was built by someone who prospected again in the area around the 1950s. After a jaunt of about 9 miles (that takes over 20 minutes), up into the mountains, you’ll reach Logan City, which has quite the view.
While you are in the area, take a drive down the Extraterrestrial Highway out of Crystal Springs and see the Alien Research Center just outside of town. You are near the infamous Area 51 here.
©Dave Alexander, Legends of America, March 2022.
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