While many will finish the Lost Horse Mine Hike, turn around and double back down the trail to the parking lot, those skilled in backcountry navigation and with a wild hair should continue the half mile up to Lost Horse Mountain. After some careful scrambling, views from the summit of Lost Horse Mountain (5,313 feet) offer panoramic vistas of the valley, the surrounding hills, and the Wonderland of Rocks to the north.
From here, drop sharply southeast to a pass .4 miles to the Lang Mine. The trail ends at this point, but well-defined trail contours guide you forward, with cairns marking the way every so often.
Negotiate the small hill to the southeast before finding a stone chimney, tailings, and the trail of the Optimist Mine. From here the trail is relatively easy to track back to the parking lot. When it doubt, follow the wash! Don’t neglect to keep a sharp eye out for early 20th century mining relics and elusive desert fauna.
Bringing along a good topo map, a compass or GPS device, and some navigational savviness is ideal. Additionally, as with all desert travel, bring more water than you think you’ll need and expect sometimes excruciatingly hot temperatures with not much reprieve if you travel in late spring to early fall.