Black Magic Mine - Death Valley National Park

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Shoshone, California (SanBernardino County)
Last Updated: 01/16/2019

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The Black Magic Mine backcountry 4x4 route is located in perhaps the most remote area of Death Valley National Park. You will likely see wild burros in the area, and lucky travelers may spot desert bighorn sheep. The road to the Black Magic Mine frequently floods during the rainy season, and unless you know there actually is a road, the mine could be difficult to find. There are no signs, and due to water running down the sand wash, previous vehicle tracks may be obliterated making you wonder where you are headed. Prior to WWII, 20 mule team borax wagon trains followed the Owl Hole Spring Road that accesses the road to the Black Magic Mine. These wagon trains would stop at Owl Hole Spring at the Black Magic Mine trailhead on their way to and from the railroad terminal at Mojave, California. Created originally as a national monument, Death Valley was substantially expanded and became a national park in 1994, but the history of the Black Magic Mine goes back to its discovery in 1916. Early ore prices made hauling the magnesium ore out of Death Valley too expensive to develop the mine until WWII when the demand for magnesium drove prices up.
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