Chloride, Arizona, never quite became a ghost town. Although most of the old buildings burned down over the years, remnants from the town’s mining heyday remain standing, some buildings still in use. You’ll also find homes displaying “yard art,” a restaurant with nostalgic memorability mounted everywhere—even on the ceiling, murals opposite petroglyphs in the nearby mountains, and the quirkiest cemetery I have ever seen. Just 23 miles northeast of Kingman, Chloride is worth the short jaunt when you’re in the area.
Chloride Yard Art
Chloride folks take things that most people might toss out, arrange them creatively in their yards and call it “yard art.” Larger objects are incorporated into a rock garden. Pieces of scrap metal become sculptures, and kitchen utensils hang from trees.
The “art” doesn’t stop with homes. Digger Dave’s Food & Sprits is filled with it, inside and out. We happened to be in Chloride just as our tummies were telling us it was time for lunch. A sign outside Digger Dave’s advertised “10 hour BBQ pulled-pork”, so we gave it a try.
The barbecue was pretty good. Although a bit pricey ($12.95 for a sandwich, fries and coleslaw), when we asked to split the meal, they actually split it onto two plates and divided the meat onto two separate buns. The lunch was plenty for both of us.
Our waitress told us we had to go see the petroglyphs and murals in the Cerbat Mountains just east of town. You can drive there if you have a four-wheel-drive vehicle. Otherwise, you can walk it. She told us it’s about “an eighth” walk. We assumed that would be an eighth of a mile. So we abandoned the car at the end of the paved road and hoofed it up the rocky mountain road.
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About an eighth of a mile up we came to an arrow painted on a rock, so we kept walking. We came to another arrow and then two more, each spaced probably an eighth to a quarter mile apart.
Almost ready to give up after well over a mile hike up the mountain, we finally saw them—colorful Native American design murals painted on the granite canyon faces by Roy Purcell, a well-known local artist.
Though our waitress from Digger Dave’s was a little off on the distance to the murals, she was spot-on with the location of the petroglyphs. It took a little looking, but we found the prehistoric etchings across the road and down a bit from the murals.
Chloride’s quirkiness doesn’t stop with the living. The do-it-yourself grave sites in the Chloride Cemetery are as unusual as the residents’ yards. Some serious, some whimsical, but all creative, the graves seem to genuinely reflect the personalities of the deceased.
If you visit Chloride
Chloride is located on County Highway 125 reached via U.S. 93, approximately 23 miles from Kingman, Arizona, or 87 miles from Las Vegas, Nevada. Visit the town’s website for further details.
Accommodations near Chloride: Find the best deal, compare prices, and read what other travelers have to say at TripAdvisor.
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