One of Nevada’s recent and popular treasures is Ted Binion’s fortunes. Binion was a casino executive who died at the age of 55. Before his death, he reportedly buried millions of dollars’ worth of silver in one of his properties in Nevada.
Nevada has other treasures, and they are waiting to discover them.
1. Sentinel Dome – Mariposa County
It is a granite dome located at the Yosemite National Park in Sierra Nevada, USA. What makes Sentinel Dome popular is the Jeffrey Pine that grew from the dome’s peak. The tree died due to the drought in 1976, but photographer Carleton Watkins snapped a photo of it in 1867.
Sentinel Dome consists of a 1.1-mile hiking trail, which is 6 miles away from Glacier Point road’s Bridalveil Creek. Once you reach the base of the course, you can traverse the dome’s northeast granite slope to reach the dome’s summit.
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2. Merced River – Stanislaus County
This river lies in the central part of California. Merced River is a tributary of the San Joaquin River and starts flowing at the Sierra Nevada Valley, going to the San Joaquin Valley. This body of water is famous for its swift course that travels through the south of Yosemite National Park. It is also the primary watercourse flowing through Yosemite Valley.
The formation of the Merced River happened some 10 million years ago when the Sierra Nevada’s land rose and its sediment eroded, thus forming San Joaquin Valley’s flat floor. The ice caps melting during the ice age created the river that people know today.
3. Glacier Point – A Viewpoint Above Yosemite Valley
Glacier Point sits on Yosemite Valley’s south wall. It has an elevation of 3,200 feet above Curry Village, with its peak providing hikers a fantastic view of Yosemite National Park’s few famous landmarks. That includes the Half Dome, Yosemite Falls, Clouds Rest, and Nevada Falls.
If you plan to visit Glacier Point, you need to note that the place has hundreds of tourists during the summer. Tours by bus last for approximately four hours, allowing you to explore most of Glacier Point. Moreover, Glacier Point Road – the road you need to travel to reach the area – is open from June to October. Snow covers the road the rest of the year, making it inaccessible.
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4. Aurora – Mineral County
Aurora is a ghost town located 22 miles southwest of Hawthorne. James M. Braly, James M. Cory, and E.R. Hicks founded this town in 1860. Esmeralda County was established a few years later, and Aurora became a part of it. Upon exploring Aurora, explorers credited Cory as the one who named Esmeralda.
However, Cory reportedly changed the name to Aurora in the late 1860s to honor the Greek goddess of the dawn.
Today, Aurora is a ghost town damaged by vandals. World War II turned the town into ashes, making it one of the best places for treasure hunters today.
5. Paradise Valley – Humboldt County
This small town has a long history, though it is unclear when people began settling here. However, there is a post office in paradise valley that has been operating since 1871. According to the 2010 census, the town has a population of 109.
While Paradise Valley has a relatively small population, the people here will willingly show people around when they visit the town. For this reason, asking permission to treasure hunt in any area can be easy. Some treasure hunters who visited the town reportedly found old jewelry and mining tools.
6. Goldfield – Esmeralda County
Goldfield is an unincorporated down in Esmeralda county with a population of 268 according to the 2010 census. The first decade of the 20th century witnessed the rapid increase of Goldfield’s population. The increase in population happened due to the discovery of gold in the town between 1903 and 1940.
Forty years after the discovery of gold, miners extracted more than 86 million dollars of gold. However, natural disasters and fires occurred, which brought the town into an economic downturn. When 2000 came, Goldfield struggled to remain economically stable. As a result, it is now uninhabited.
7. Dixie Valley – Churchill County
Acquired by the US Navy in 1995, Dixie Valley is a small ranching town in Churchill County. Back then, the town had no retail businesses, so most residents had to travel for over a mile to reach the nearest neighboring town. Dixie Valley had a one-room school for grades 1 to 8 students, which was also the home of the town’s teacher. Meanwhile, grades 9 to 12 students had to travel 75 miles via bus to reach their school in Fallon, Nevada.
Today, the town is a popular spot for metal detector hobbyists.
8. Cactus Springs – Clark County
This town is an unincorporated community near Indian Springs. It is famous as the site of The Temple Of Goddess Spirituality Dedicated to Sekhmet. Sekhmet is an Egyptian goddess, and Genevieve Vaughan built the temple in 1993. Vaughan said the temple was “founded on the principles of Peace, Goddess Spirituality, & the gift economy.”
Today, you can treasure hunt at Cactus Springs, but you need to be careful not to disturb anyone.
9. Frenchman’s Station – Churchill County
Frenchman’s Station is also famous as Bremond. Founded in 1904, it served as a stagecoach stop named after the French immigrant Aime “Frenchy” Bremond. The town also served as a stoppage for travelers on their way to Fallon, Fairview, and Wonder. Frenchman provided lodging, food, stables, and saloons to those who passed by and stayed for the night.
In 1985, the US Navy bought Frenchman due to its proximity to the military bombing range, Dixie Valley. For this reason, the establishments built in Frenchman’s Station were demolished, and people had no choice but to relocate.
10. Charleston – Elko County
Charleston is a ghost town south of the Mountain City and Jabidge Ranger District, specifically along the Bruneau River. The town was established in 1876 when people found gold in Seventy-Six Creek, at the southwest base of Copper Mountain. It once had the name Mardis, but people changed its name to Charleston, which came from the name of a local prospector Tom Charles.
This settlement increased in terms of population and establishments. Soon after the town’s discovery, it became populated with buildings like hotels, schools, saloons, and stores. However, the majority of the mining operations in Charleston stopped by 1884. People relocated, abandoning the mines, now a paradise for treasure hunters.
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11. Blue Diamond – Clark County
Blue Diamond is a small town with a population of 290, according to the 2010 census. It has an elementary school, library, park, church, event hall, and gas station. There is also a mercantile built in 1942. Most of the people in this town were miners at the Blue Diamond Mine.
Moreover, the walls inside the store exhibit many of the town’s historical photos captured by the Blue Diamond Historical Society.
The town’s history began when the Blue Diamond Corporation of California purchased its neighboring gypsum mine in 1923. By 1941, the company opened a wallboard manufacturing plant and built a company town in 1942. Initially, people called Blue Diamond Cottonwood but later changed it to today’s name when a post office opened under Blue Diamondville in 1942. Blue Diamond – Clark County google maps link.
12. Candelaria – Mineral County
The Kinross Gold Candelaria Mine dominates Candelaria. Back in 1864, Mexican prospectors discovered that the silver slopes of the mountain in the town had silver, so they founded the town of Candelaria. In 1873, miners opened the town’s most profitable mine – the Northern Belle.
Due to the success of the mining activities in Candelaria, people started relocating here, building businesses that made the town economically stable. But as the population and the water supply decreased, Candelaria’s stamp mill began operating as a dry mill. However, the dry mill produced toxic dust that caused respiratory disease and killed its residents.
As a result, Candelaria’s population decreased, causing it to become a ghost town.
13. Nevada Copper Belt Railroad – Lyon County
This abandoned railroad once connected the mining facilities of Nevada-Douglas Copper Company to the former Carson and Colorado Railway Subsidiary. Built-in 1910, it began operating on March 1 of the same year. The railroad stretched from Wabuska to the Walker River at Mason, Nevada.
Nevada Copper Belt Railroad ran as a passenger railroad until 1945. However, it became bankrupt and stopped all operations in 1947.
14. Barnwell And Searchlight Railway
This 23-mile railroad operated from 1906 to 1911. It connects Barnwell, California to Searchlight Nevada, with the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railway operating it from beginning to end.
The founding of this railway happened when miners discovered gold in Searchlight, Nevada, in 1997. This event caused a gold rush in the said town.
By 1907, the mining activities in the area caused its population to reach approximately 5,000. Thus, prompting the state to establish this railway.
Furthermore, the railway stopped its operation on February 18, 1924.
15. Eureka And Palisade Railroad
Eureka and Palisade Railroad was founded from 1873 to 1875 and had a distance of approximately 85 miles. The railroad construction aimed to connect the center of a silver mining area, Eureka, with Palisade’s national railway network. Mining companies also used this railroad to carry silver-lead ore from Eureka, Nevada, to Palisade.
However, floods, fire, and road traffic caused the amount of ore extracted in Eureka to diminish. As a result, its operation stopped in 1983.
In 2019, three men went on a treasure hunt and illegally dug at casino executive Ted Binion’s property. Before Binion’s death, he hired Rick Tabish to bury his silver and gold in an underground vault at one casino executive’s properties in the desert of Nevada. (source)
Metal detecting laws in Nevada vary depending on your city or country. For this reason, you need to ask the people in charge of the area you are in before you can start hunting. As per the state parks, only a few have designated areas for metal detector hobbyists. So, you first need to contact the park supervisor before proceeding with your activity.
The Bureau of Land Management in Nevada is a legal place to use a metal detector. However, you must ensure that you will not remove any cultural treasure.
Finally, private properties are open for hobbyists if their owners give you a written permit. (source)
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Like other states in the US, Nevada permits metal detector enthusiasts to keep the modern treasures they found. That includes coins, jewelry, and other valuable relics.
However, more than 100 years old artifacts should not be removed or damaged while metal detecting. In an instance that you found a relic that you believe has a cultural value, you need to report it to the authorities governing the land where you are metal detecting. (source)
- Treasure hunters believe casino executive Ted Binion buried his treasure in his Pahrump property. (source)
- The Cherpeski family from Carson City solved the Nevada Day Treasure Hunt and tracked the Nevada Treasure Hunt Medallion. (source)
- Divers found no trace of long-lost treasure chests at Lake Tahoe. (source)
- The Lost Hardin Silver – Allen Hardin and two of his friends traveled west using an immigrant wagon train. While traveling, they stumbled on a rich silver deposit in North America. However, they could only carry a small amount of silver when they proceeded to Nevada.
After decades of searching, Hardin could never relocate where the silver deposits were. Hundreds of years later, treasure hunters are still roaming in Nevada, aiming to look for the fortune once discovered. (source)
- The Curse of the Lost Sheepherder’s Mine – This story revolves around the Jarbridge Mountains in northern Nevada, which has a rich yet difficult-to-find gold deposit. Treasure hunters found the gold mine years ago, but those who discovered the gold deposit died. (source)
- Lost Blue Bucket Placer Gold – According to this story, Oregon-bound immigrants accidentally found a fortune in placer gold. The immigrants collected several gold nuggets, but no one knew what they were back then. Years later, people discovered they were gold nuggets, and some immigrants tried finding the fortune again. However, these immigrants were unsuccessful. (source)
10 Treasure Legends! Nevada: Lost Gold, Hidden Hoards, and Fantastic Fortunes – Commander Pulitzer, Jovan Hutton Pulitzer, and National Treasure Society
Half of this book contains the treasure legends of Nevada, and the other half is a customizable journal where you can list the treasures you found. If you want to look for the long-lost fortunes buried in Nevada, this book can help you do that. (source)
Nevada Lost Mines and Buried Treasures (Prospecting and Treasure Hunting) – Douglas McDonald
This book by Douglas McDonald contains some of the most famous treasure legends in Nevada. The author narrated the legends as detailed as possible, so you can make a map in your mind about where to find the treasures while reading the stories. Even better, McDonald tried to verify every detail of every story. (source)
Mining Districts and Mineral Resources of Nevada (Prospecting and Treasure Hunting) – Francis G. Lincoln
This book contains current and authentic information about Nevada’s mineral resources and mining districts. In this book, you will find a compilation of information written by the staff of the US Geological Survey. For this reason, you can potentially find gold and mineral treasures in the places mentioned in this book. (source)
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- 8 News NOW Las Vegas. I-Team Archives: The legend of Ted Binion’s buried treasure. Youtube Video. 0:01. Posted By 8 News NOW Las Vegas. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FtatsjM9E24.
- MDHTALK Metal Detecting State Law. State Park Links and State Park Metal Detecting Laws & Regulations. https://www.mdhtalk.org/cf/city-regulation.cfm?st=NV#:~:text=Metal%20detector%20use%20is%20allowed,old%20may%20not%20be%20collected.
- Duncan Phenix. Pahrump Land Believed To Hide Ted Binion’s Treasure Sold For $1.9m. April 19, 2022. https://www.8newsnow.com/news/local-news/pahrump-land-believed-to-hide-ted-binions-treasure-sold-for-1-9m/.
- Faith Evans. Carson City Residents Solve Nevada Day Treasure Hunt (The Clues Are Explained). October 20, 2021. https://www.nevadaappeal.com/news/2021/oct/20/carson-city-residents-solve-nevada-treasure-hunt/.
- Scott Sonner. No Sea Serpents, Mobsters But Tahoe Trash Divers Strike Gold. May 13, 2022. https://apnews.com/article/science-lakes-california-nevada-7e74aa67d25e37b272a3781e1bdc1499.
- W. C. Jameson. Buried Treasures of the Rocky Mountain West: Legends of Lost Mines, Train Robbery Gold, Caves of Forgotten Riches, and Indians’ Buried Silver. USA: August House, 1993. https://books.google.com.ph/books?id=58aSz0RZeZEC&printsec=frontcover&dq=treasure+legends+nevada&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiiytn_vPr4AhVIet4KHZj0CHEQ6AF6BAgCEAI#v=onepage&q=treasure%20legends%20nevada&f=false.
- 10 Treasure Legends! Nevada: Lost Gold, Hidden Hoards, and Fantastic Fortunes. Amazon. Accessed July 15. 2022. https://www.amazon.com/10-Treasure-Legends-Nevada-Fantastic/dp/1495444155/ref=sr_1_3?crid=1WD7A2ADSH7YN&keywords=treasure+hunting+books+nevada&qid=1657874800&sprefix=treasure+hunting+books+nevad%2Caps%2C296&sr=8-3.
- Nevada Lost Mines and Buried Treasures (Prospecting and Treasure Hunting). Amazon. Accessed July 15. 2022. https://www.amazon.com/Nevada-Treasures-Prospecting-Treasure-Hunting/dp/0913814377/ref=sr_1_6?crid=1WD7A2ADSH7YN&keywords=treasure+hunting+books+nevada&qid=1657875016&sprefix=treasure+hunting+books+nevad%2Caps%2C296&sr=8-6.
- Mining Districts and Mineral Resources of Nevada (Prospecting and Treasure Hunting). Amazon. Accessed July 15. 2022. https://www.amazon.com/Districts-Mineral-Resources-Prospecting-Treasure/dp/0913814482/ref=sr_1_8?crid=1WD7A2ADSH7YN&keywords=treasure+hunting+books+nevada&qid=1657875016&sprefix=treasure+hunting+books+nevad%2Caps%2C296&sr=8-8.