Best Mine Tour - 2010
Goldfield Ghost Town
For years, when hiking on the west flanks of the Superstition Mountains, we wondered where the hell that train-whistle noise was coming from. This year, we found out — it's the whistle above the mine at the Goldfield Ghost Town. And we're happy to know, because the mine turns out to be a slice of Arizona we should have experienced years ago. A grizzled-looking prospector type gave the tour into the mine for our small group of adults and kids. Though we were impressed right away by the authentic mine elevator, which went down 30 or 40 feet (as far as we could tell), the ambiance of the tour was set when the prospector/guide had to jump up and down to make the elevator descend the final two feet. Inside the dim mine shaft, where the ceiling is held up by rickety-looking wooden and metal support beams, we were treated to a history of the place and interesting anecdotes — like how the 19th-century pneumatic jackhammers were called "Widowmakers" because the dust they kicked up had miners dropping like flies. After the relieved feeling of seeing sunlight when you get out, stop by the saloon and Wild West town for a Tombstone-like shoot-out. Don't wait for your Chicago relatives to visit before making a pilgrimage to this historic spot.