Lytle Ranch: A place that tells it’s own story
I love the west desert, the land out beyond the Utah hills that opens up like an ocean between Utah and Nevada. It is a place that “feels” like the desert. With low level vegetation and a view that stretches so far it seems to bend, it’s a place you might find yourself walking in a dream.
This winter has been anything but winter. It feels like spring. The weather is perfect for getting out and hiking in places that are scorching hot in the summer. I’ve been itching to get out to the west desert, Beaver Dam Wash area. We headed out there a couple of days ago with no particular destination in mind. Since I am a trail runner, every dirt road we passed (and there were a lot) looked like a good place to stop and hike. Instead we sped on.
Finally a weathered, small sign that read Lytle Ranch Nature Preserve caught my attention. Looking out in front of us at the endless miles of rock, black brush, and Joshua trees I thought, “What kind of nature preserve?” We decided to find out. We drove through a Joshua Tree forest – in the desert, you can still see in a forest. The landscape was dry, quiet. We saw a sign for the Utah/Nevada border. Someone marked the line between the two out in what seemed to be the middle of nowhere.
We finally dropped down into a valley. Stock corals, old vehicles, and buildings could be seen. Clearly there was water because there were huge cottonwoods – a sign of Mormon settlers. We drove to a gate that said closed to the public. There was a number to call for tours and campsites. We decided to get out and look around at the area not closed off. I’ll let the pictures tell the rest.
Posted on February 3, 2015, in Film, Art & Photography and tagged abandonded ranch, Beaver Dam Wash, BYU, exploring the desert, Joshua tree forest, Lytle Ranch Nature Preserve, Mojave Desert, Mormon history, Mormon pioneers, polygamy, The Nature Conservancy, Utah HIll, Utah Nevada border, Washington County historical site. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.