This weekend’s trip to Vegas was my first visit since the late 90s, and my first time driving there. Not to mention it was Patrick’s first ever visit to America’s playground. On our way we made some stops, including the ghost town of Calico.
Founded in 1881, Calico’s mines produced millions in silver, before silver dropped in price, and it became a ghost town for decades until Walter Knott, of Knott’s Berry Farm fame, purchased the property in 1951, restoring it and offering it as an attraction of sorts.
Today Calico is operated by San Bernardino County Regional Parks system, and the site offers buildings that have stood the test of time, some with artifacts, others turned into gift shops and restaurants, there is a “Mystery Shack” and even a train ride. Patrick and I had fun exploring, and we dined on buffalo burgers while sipping sarsaparilla at the Calico House Restaurant.
For those wishing to visit Calico, it is located off of Interstate 15, about 120 miles out of Los Angeles. It’s a swell place to stop on your way to Vegas or LA if you’re coming from the east, or if you are cruising Route 66 and find yourself in Barstow, it’s only a few minutes away! It costs $8.00 per person to enter Calico, and other amusements, such as the train, panning for gold, and the Mystery Shack are an additional cost.
Have you ever been to Calico or another ghost town?
Stay tuned for more on our trip!
February 2020 Update: Parts of Kesha’s music video “High Road” featured Calico, including its iconic Bottle House and School House.