Bodie California

Bodie California

Bodie California

Bodie California is a state historic park and even though it's slightly touristy it's still worth a visit. It makes a great side trip if you're in the Mono Lake area. Bodie was a gold mining center. It peaked in population from 1870-80. According to the Wikipedia article the peak population was 5000-7000 in 1879 although the census of 1880 counted only 2,712 and Bodie doesn't appear in the 1870 census tables I looked at. By the 1920 census the population of Bodie was down to 110. By 1943 the population of Bodie was 3. Bodie has a remarkable number of intact structures for a place that has not had residents for 70 years. The reason for it's state of preservation is that Bodie was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1961 and became a state park in 1962.

Bodie California

Bodie Swayze Hotel "arrested decay"

The park has a year round staff of caretakers inspite of the fact that it's closed to the public during winter months. The buildings are preserved in a state of 'arrested decay". All of the exposed wood surfaces are treated with a preservative similar to Thomsons water sealer or Flood. This gives the buildings an unnatural amber hue and slight sheen.

Bodie California

Bodie Stamp Mill and over view

The massive stamp mill and associated industrial buildings were the ones I was most interested in looking at. Unfortunately they are fenced off and inaccessible unless you go on a limited, guided tour.

Bodie Church

Bodie Methodist Church

I visited in August at the peak of tourist season and estimate that there were around 50-100 other visitors while I was there. The site is big enough though that it didn't feel crowded.

Bodie California overview

Bodie overview

 

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