Hidden San Diego

Black Mountain Mine



 

Personal Experience:  The first time I read that there were old mine shafts hidden in the Black Mountain canyon, I could hardly believe it.  I had grown up in that area, but the most interesting adventures I had known about were of two mediocre waterfalls: one in Rancho Bernardo and one in Rancho Penasquitos.  An exploratory mine though? Sign me up! 

After scouring the internet for as much information as I could find, I learned that the rumors were true. Back in the 1920’s, a lively mining district was created to excavate arsenic. Arsenic used to be a valuable chemical element that was used to eradicate boll weevils that were infesting Southern cotton crops. 

Escondido rodeo cowboy and actor, Frank Hopkins, was able to get the funding back-up to set up his camp in Rancho Penasquitos and so it began.  Within several years of cold winters and dry summers though, the South was able to eliminate the boll weevils, thus lowering the demand for white arsenic.  By 1927, the mine had been abandoned, though the remnants and mine shafts still remain.  Here is where we enter.

Thanks to technology, I was able to located the mine’s flume through Google Maps and used that as a GPS guide through my phone to easily track the necessary path to our destination.  The tracking device helped to ensure us that we were going the correct way and I highly recommend using one if you decide to go.

There is the slightest evidence of a path which is just enough to let you know that you’re going the right way.  This is a rugged, off-the-traditional trail hike and therefore it is extremely important that you come prepared.  Cover up as there are ticks!  I know this because when I got home one was burrowing itself inside my leg.  Bring a backpack with regular safety gear and let someone know where you are going.  I cannot stress enough the importance of thorough research before you go on these types of adventures as well as coming prepared for the variety of situations that could occur.

Personally, these types of hikes are my favorite because they are off the beaten path.  It’s fun knowing not too many people have done this adventure and yet the slightly trampled ground tells you it has been explored before and to keep walking.  We went the long way and later learned that there was a much quicker way to get to the flume.  This is not a kid-friendly hike and these are old ruins that could potentially be very dangerous. 

 

 Locations Nearby:


     camino ruiz trail    



 

anza borrega desert

Arroyo Tapiado Mud Caves


bankers hill

Balboa Botanical Building

 

Balboa Dirt Bike Trails

 

Balboa Native& Rose Gardens

 

Bridle Trail

 

Centro Cultural de Raza

 

Florida Canyon

 

Free Tuesdays at the Park


Top of the Park


Japanese Friendship Garden


Marston Canyon & Footbridge

Marston House

 

Maple Canyon

 

Mingei International Museum

 

Museum of Man

 

Natural History Museum


House of Pacific Relations International Cottages

 

Palm Canyon

 

Reuben H. Fleet Science Center

 

Spanish Village Art Center

 

Twilight in the Park

 

World Beat Center


Campo

carmel valley

Carmel Valley Cemetery


Carlsbad

Batiquitos Lagoon

Carlsbad Flower Fields

El Salto Falls

Hosp Grove

Leo Carrillo Ranch

Museum of Making Music

Self-Realization FellowshipHermitage & Meditation Gardens


city heights 

City Farmers Nursery 

New Roots Community Farm

San Diego Peace Garden

Wat Sovannkiri Buddhist Temple


chula vista

Living Coast Discovery Center

Proctor Valley Rd.

Zorba's Greek Restaurant

U.S. Olympic Training Center

Upper Otay Lake


coronado

Coronado Sand Dune's Secret Message

Hotel Del Coronado 


encinitas

Good Morning

San Diego Botanic Gardens


el cajon


Escondido

 Altipiano Vineyard & Winery

Cordiano Winery

Castle Rock

Daley Ranch

Deer Park Winery &
Auto Museum

Distinction Gallery

Deer Park Monastary

Derbas House

Dixon Lake

Elfin Forest

Grand Tea Room

Philosophical Library

Felicita Park

Grape Day Park

Harmony Grove Spiritualist Center

Harmony Grove

Kit Carson Park Hiking Trails

Lawrence Welk Caves

Orfila Winery

Lake Hodges Dam

Lake Wohlford

Lake Wohlford Dam

Plan 9 Alehouse

San Pasqual Cemetary 

San Pasqual Indian Cemetary

Sikes Historic Adobe Farmstead

Street Life

Record Paradise

Questhaven Retreat

Questhaven Rd.

Queen Califia's Magical Circle Garden

Phap Vuong Monatsery

Stone Brewery


Fallbrook

Dinwiddie Preserve

Masonic Cemetery

Palomares House & Park


Golden Hill

Golden Hill Park


Villa Montezuma



Hillcrest

Co-Habitat

Suspension Bridge


photo

Mt. Olivet Cemetery


Suzie's Farm

Tijuana River Valley Regional Park Community Garden


jacumba

Desert View Tower

Boulder Park


Carrizo Gorge Railyard


Coyote's Flying Saucer Retrievals & Repairs


Institute of Perception


Mountain Meadows Ghost Town


Osama's Mica Mines



jamul


McGinty House



Julian


Wolf Sanctuary

Downtown Julian

Golden Gem Mine

Julian Pioneer Cemetery

Eagle Mine

Warlock Mine


kearny mesa

 94 Aero Squadron Restaurant


99 Ranch Market

The Fruit Shop


la jolla

Ho Chi Mihn Trail

Munchkin House 

Seal Beach

Mushroom Beach

La Jolla's Caves, Coves and Tidepools

Mount Soledad

Salk Institute

Scripps Coastal Reserve

Secrets of UCSD

Sunny Jim Cave

Pottery Canyon Natural Park


la mesa

La Mesa's Secret Stairs

Mount Helix

McKinney House

Wat Lao Boubpharam Temple


lakeside

Blue Sky Ranch


Little Italy

Little Italy

Washington St. Skatepark


 logan heights

Chicano Park Murals

Technomania Circus

Writerz Blok


Mira Mesa

Camino Ruiz Trail

misc

Aesthetigeist Art Collective

Christmas Light Displays

Community Acupuncture

Haunted San Diego Events

 Urban Ruins of HIghway 80


mission hills

Pioneer Park

Presidio Park

Presidio Park Historic Spots 

Topiary Garden


mission valley 
Adobe Falls

Mission Basilica San 
Diego de Alcala


mount laguna

Kwaayymi Point


normal heights

Folk Arts Rare Records


north park

Ray St.


ocean beach

Ocean Beach Farmers Market

Rum Runners Cave

Sunset Cliffs Caves & Coves


Villa Surf Ruins


oceanside

Succulent Cafe

San Luis Rey Mission

 

San Luis Rey Pioneer Cemetery



Old Town

Casa de Estudillo

Cosmopolitan Hotel

Dia de los Muertos

El Campo Cemetary

La Casa de Machado y Stewart Museum

Mason Schoolhouse

Old Adobe Chapel

Seeley Stables

Whaley House

Victorian Village Heritage Park



pacific beach
Kate O Sessions Park


Palomar Mountain

Palomar Observatory

The Weir


point loma

Cabrillo National Monument

  Fort Rosecrans Cemetary

Old Point Loma Lighthouse

poway

Blue Sky Reserve & Lake Poway 


Meadowbrook Tunnels

Lightning Brewery


Old Poway Park


Old Pomerado Rd.

Meadowbrook BMX Trail

Midland Tunnel

Smith Pioneer Cemetery & Homestead

Xpressive Arts Center BYOB Classes


ramona

Black Canyon

Devil's Punchbowl


Mount Woodson Castle


Sutherland Dam


rancho bernardo

  Battle Mountain

Lake Hodges

Lake Hodges Waterfall

Bernardo Winery


rancho penasquitos

Black Mountain Mine

Cara Knott Memorial Garden


Eichar's Grave


McKamey Manor


Pentagram Palace


Rancho de Los Penasquitos 

Rancho Penasquitos Waterfall 


santee

Crystal Cave


Santee Drive-In Theater

Old Mission Dam


Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor Center


Jacob's Cave


san marcos

Double Peak Park

Jack's Pond


scripps ranch

Ballast Point Brewery


Lake Miramar


Evan's Pond


seaport village

B-39 Submarine


Berkely Ferryboat


HMS Surprise Ship


Medea Steam Yacht


USS Dolphin Submarine


Star of India


serra mesa

Murphy Canyon



solana beach

Mushroom Caves



Sorrento Valley

Pet Cemetery

Seabreeze Organic Farm



torrey pines

Blacks Beach

Mushroom House

Torrey Pines State Reserve


university heights

Buchanan Canyon

The Massage Center

Soltan Banoo

Red Fox Piano Bar

Lips Restaurant

Lei Lounge

Rose Canyon


valley center

Abandoned Homes of Hellhole Canyon

Bates Nut Farm

Lavender Fields

Metta Forest Monastery

Morning Star Ranch

Old Castle Ranch

Valley Center Historical Museum

Yellow Deli


vista

Alta Vista Gardens

Butterfly Farm

Koral's Tropical Fruit Farm & Museum

Exotica Rare Fruit Farm

Indian Store

Yellow Deli

Rancho Guajome Adobe



warner springs

Santa Ysabel Mission

Sky Sailing

Warner Springs Town



big sur

Andrew Molera State Park

Ewoldsen Trail

Los Padres Beach

McWay Falls

Nepenthe Restaurant

Partington Cove

Pfeiffer Beach

River Inn

Salmon Creek Waterfall & Cave

Spirit Garden

Soberanes Creek Watershed

Ventana


Carmel

California Market Restaurant

Point Lobos State Reserve


 los angeles


Mendocino

san simeon

Please share your experiences with this location!


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I recently took the trek back down here for a photoshoot for music duo LNC's latest album: Artifacts.  You can check out some of my favorite shots below.

Click this photo to be taken to their album:




Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine

LNC

Black Mountain Mine


Here is our adventure and some of our neat findings!



Black Mountain Mine


Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine

We've arrived!
Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine


This is the bottom of the flume.  If you take the path we took you will end up here first.  If you take the correct path you will end up on the top.

Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine


The side of the flume:


Black Mountain Mine

Inside:

Black Mountain Mine


At the top of a crazy, (mostly) undocumented journey:

Black Mountain Mine


Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine


GREAT view!


Black Mountain Mine


ROUND 2

After reading on other sites of several actual mines in the area, we finally ventured back in search of them with much luck!  Read on.....


Black Mountain Mine



Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine

And here is the larger mine!


Black Mountain Mine


The first thing we came across was this creepy, decapitated witchy doll.  Nice touch!

Black Mountain Mine

 Black Mountain Mine



We also came across what appears to be several covered-up or collapsed mines:

Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine

We found an abandoned jeep!  I wonder what the story is behind this?


Black Mountain Mine

Black Mountain Mine

 

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