Dublin Gulch - Atlas Obscura

Dublin Gulch

Shoshone, California

A unique collection of old miners' cave homes carved in to the hillside cliffs near Death Valley. 

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In the town of Shoshone, California, is a unique ghost town of carved-out cave dwellings called Dublin Gulch. In the late 1800s, miners and railroad workers created hillside living quarters in the cliffs. These cave dwellings kept the residents cool during the scorching summer heat and provided insulation from the freezing Mojave Desert winters.

Most of these cave dwellings have just one room. However, a few of the homes have multiple rooms, wall niches, and fireplaces with stove pipes protruding from the top of the bluff. One of the dwellings even has a large garage carved out.

The exact dates of habitation aren’t known, but “1870” is carved largely near one dwelling, and it’s believed that people lived in these caves on and off up until the mid-1970s. There are rumors that several Manson family members lived in these caves after Charles Manson kicked them out of Barker Ranch. A well-known Death Valley prospector by the name of Frank “Shorty” Harris also lived in the Dublin Gulch.

To visit Dublin Gulch, it’s easily accessible by car (park just off of  Highway 127 near the Shoshone Cemetery) or on foot (walk over from the Shoshone Museum). Most of the dwellings are a quarter-mile up a rough dirt road. They are easy to find and some dwellings are open for exploration. Some of the cave homes are locked or only visible through windows.

Know Before You Go

Dublin Gulch can be visited on the way to Death Valley (it's south of Death Valley Junction). It's also near the historic Shoshone Cemetery, it's across the street from the Shoshone Museum and the Crowbar Cafe & Saloon. The Dublin Gulch is a really unique ghost town. 

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