September 2009 Issue Explore Historic California - Magazine for Enthusiasts










Room 8-The Most Famous Cat in Los Angeles




Sky high gas prices along with sluggish economic conditions have severely impacted our tour business for over a year.

We have reluctantly decided to suspend our tour operations for the time being.

Our sincere thanks and appreciation to all who continue to support us.

LOGO T Shirts Available


Explore Historic California with our  logo depicting the California backcountry and its rich history both true and farce.

We now offer shirts, sweats, jerseys and cups with our logo.

Click the shirt for details!


Friends of Last Chance Canyon is a new organization interested in sustaining and protecting areas within the El Paso Mountains, near Ridgecrest, California. The main focus is preserving and protecting historic sites like Burro Schmidt's tunnel and the Walt Bickel Camp.

Please click on either logo to visit the FLCC site.

We support


Support Room 8's charitable legacy by donating to the Room 8 Memorial Cat Foundation or adopting one of their cats.

Click on Room 8's photo or phone

951-361-2205 for more information.

Mules can taste the difference--so can you



The Panamint Breeze is a newsletter for people who love the rough and rugged deserts and mountains of California and beyond.

Published by Ruth and Emmett Harder, it is for people who are interested in the history of mining in the western states; and the people who had the fortitude to withstand the harsh elements.

It contains stories of the past and the present; stories of mining towns and the colorful residents who lived in them; and of present day adventurers.

Subscriptions are $20 per year (published quarterly March, June, September & December) Subscriptions outside the USA are $25 per year. All previous issues are available. Gift certificates are available also.

To subscribe mail check (made payable to Real Adventure Publishing) along with name, address, phone number & e-mail address to:  Real Adventure Publishing, 18201 Muriel Avenue, San Bernardino, CA 92407.

For more information about the Panamint Breeze e-mail Ruth at:


It's always FIRE SEASON! Click the NIFC logo above to see what's burning.



Click on the bag to find out how.


Visit Michael Piatt's site,, for the truth behind some of Bodie's myths.

Terri Geissinger is a Bodie area Historian, Guide and Chautauquan. A long time resident who lives in Bodie and Smith Valley, she is dedicated to preserving stories of the pioneer families, miners, ranchers and teamsters. Click the photo for information on her tours with the Mono Lake Committee.


Back to the past in California City--Wimpy's!

8209 California City Blvd.,
California City, 93505

Hey Brother,

Can 'Ya

Spare a Job?

The nation's economic downturn has severely affected the newspaper industry. My job of nearly 30 years was eliminated several months ago.

I'm actively looking for full or part time job opportunities within my diverse skill set.

If you have, or know of any openings, please contact me through this CONTACT  link.




Explore Historic California!

     Not too many years ago, the family station wagon was the magic carpet to adventure. Today, that family station wagon is likely to be a four wheel drive sport utility vehicle or pick up truck. SUV's and other 4x4's are one of the best selling classes of vehicles. Ironically, industry statistics show that once purchased, few owners will dare to drive their vehicles off the paved highway.

     Click your mouse through the website and enjoy our armchair adventures and the histories behind them.



Station Fire Close Call

by Roger Vargo

 The massive Station fire (148,000 acres as of 9/5/09) was an unwelcome visitor to our community. The arson-caused blaze started near the Angeles Crest (USFS) ranger station and roared west through Big Tujunga Canyon to within less than a mile of our home. We came within several blocks of a mandatory evacuation.

Thick clouds of smoke obscured the sky for several days. The orange glow of flames reflecting through the smoke, punctuated by fiery eruptions on the hillsides, kept area residents on edge throughout the nights.

Our thanks go the efforts of a unified team of more than 4,000 firefighters, law enforcement officers, and volunteers who worked to keep the flames away from structures.

Because of the fire, production of this month's Explore Historic California has been delayed. We hope to get back on track within a week.

Smoke from the Station fire billows towards the sky in angry clouds as the fire races west through Big Tujunga Canyon August 29, 2009 (top). A helicopter drops water on a hot spot near our home August 31 (bottom left).  Flames approach Mt. Lukens, the highest point in the City of Los Angeles, August 30 (bottom right). The Station fire is the largest blaze in Los Angeles County history.  Many of the forest hillsides near our community had not burned in more than 30 years.




Friends of Bodie Entry Wins

Best Adult Costume

in Bridgeport 2009 Parade

by Roger Vargo


Bodie's usually dormant blue Dodge Graham truck comes to life during Bridgeport's Independence Day parade to serve as transport for the Friends of Bodie entry "Where is the State Line". The entry celebrates a survey discrepancy in the original state line between California and Nevada.  According to the original survey, Aurora was located in California and became the first county seat of Mono County, Calif.   After the error was discovered, the county seat was eventually moved to its present location in Bridgeport. The entry won first place in the Adult Costume category.                                                 


Rod Duff pilots Bodie's Dodge Graham truck through the streets of Bridgeport during the 2009 Independence Day parade.


Bodie staff and volunteers portray proponents on both sides of the California-Nevada state line during Bridgeport's 2009 Independence Day parade. The entry won first place in the Adult Costume category. Copyright 2009, All Rights Reserved.                           Powered by