Hike-in Required
No
Open Year-round
Yes
ADA accessible
No
Guided tours
No
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Nevada's Unionville Ghost Town is more accurately a semi-ghost town, as there are still a few people—about 20—who remain living in the picturesque canyon tucked deep into the Humboldt Mountain Range. About an hour from the nearest amenities, the current site of Unionville displays a handful of buildings and structures from its storied history as a mining camp. Once containing a poplulation as high as 1,500, the camp was largely abandoned when it was determined that most of the ore had little value.

However, for its short-lived existence, Unionville did contain some significant traces of the history. Samuel Clemens, later to rename himself Mark Twain, moved to Unionville with the intention of prospecting, however, he soon left for Virginia City, where he would switch careers and write for the town newspaper. Unionville also held Humboldt County's first public building, a schoolhouse, and would be the county seat for a period of time. (The area would later become part of Pershing County when it was created in 1919.)

Unionville itself was originally called Buena Vista, after the Buena Vista canyon that lies downhill. This name was later changed to Dixie, before Confederacy sympathisers were outnumbered by Union sympathisers, who changed the town's name again to the name that would ultimately stick.

The Arizona Mine was the area's largest producer, operating up to three stamp mills during its use from 1862 to 1880. Today, remains of the mine and its structures can be found, although most remains sit dispersed, with no marked trails or signs. Many old buildings sit on private property and are unreachable without permission, and as time goes on, more and more of these buildings decay. Overall, the ghost town is interesting, but accessibility is more difficult due to the lack of preservation and the hard-to-reach locales of much of the interesting features. Those willing to walk and climb around in the adjacent canyons or view building ruins from a nearby distance may find it worth the stop.

Mohea Whitaker Memorial Park near the top of the town occupies the site of Mark Twain's former home, and contains picnic tables and grills for travelers who may want to sit down.

Parking is available at the park or the large dirt turnaround at the top of the town. Monitor Canyon and Wilson Canyon both have double tracks that offer hikes high up into the Humboldt Mountains. The last several miles into Unionville from State Highway 400 are up a graded dirt road normally accessible to all passenger vehicles. Please respect private property signs.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Summer
Fall
Spring

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

None

Pros

Interesting history.

Cons

Few remains.

Pets allowed

Allowed

Features

Historically significant
Family friendly
Mine
Picnic tables

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Rye Patch State Recreation Area
Rye Patch State Recreation Area

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