Park City Adventure
So another adventure unfolds. To keep everyone up to date, My wife and I had plans to travel to the Coast of WA for her nieces graduation. As busy as I was trying to wrap up construction, I unfortunately, had to cancel. Which left me a bit perturbed, but knowing that I had to fill time somehow. As luck would have it, My Company flew in a helper from Colorado which was the reason I remained "ground bound" here in Utah. So as luck would have it, He was right up the same alley as far as exploring and curiosity, which meant one thing: Adventure. So I did some quick research and found that there were some "haunts" possibly to be found about 30 miles East of Salt Lake, at a place called Park City. With that decided, off we went. So a little history in regards to this once booming mining town, that would of folded its doors in the 70's if the state of Utah didn't decide to step in and breath some life into it. Founded in the late 1800's, this town was a boom for silver and other ores that were mined. With the modern conveniences of water and plumbing, Park city by the late 1800's was a boom for miners from across the country, with over 7,000 occupants that traveled from not only the united states, but across the seas as well. Boasting the largest mines around, Park City raked in the profit for 50 plus years, until the price of silver dropped in the late 1940's. For a few decades Park City remained on a lifeline of sorts, with only a few hundred people still residing within the city limits. Fast forward to 2002, where Park City made history and hosted the winter Olympics. You can still see the ski jumps with the Olympic emblem embedded into the fake turf, and remnants of signs, the Olympic park and all the money that was invested into the small city. It all somehow sits eerily on the mountains, but still a pleasant reminder of what once was.
Speaking of what once was, as well as what may still be there, we stumble onto the adventure at hand. While Jason and I were driving up, I had looked up some local "haunts" of sort that still hover around and remain. There is a story that I came across in different forms. The miners that worked in the various mines, (FYI, there is over 1,200 miles of tunnels under and around park city, which is insane) say that there is a foreboding spirit of a man in a yellow slicker, that showed up just before a major accident in the mines. It is said that he roams the top half of Main street, and is seen fading off into the distance towards the area where most mines were built. Than there is the infamous Egyptian Theatre...several people have heard organ music playing where there is ..well, no organ. along with a ghostly presence that roams behind the screen and causes trouble. Than there is Lizzie that is said to be seen around the Imperial hotel, where she pushes bags out of peoples hands and causes everyday mischief. Jason and I composed ourselves over a beer and appetizers at the Wasatch brewery pub, and then traversed down the infamous main street of park city. I felt somewhat awkward with Jason. I had just meant him Sunday, and this was the first non-work time we had. As I broke out the recorder, I found myself apologizing for the "weirdness" of sorts while I recorded in front of the Egyptian theatre, and various points along the way. He didn't seem to mind it, and I believe he was somewhat onboard with weird shit as we continued to talk and walk and enjoy the park city atmosphere.
So we stumbled on a chair lift at the foot of old school downtown, where for 24.00 a piece, you could traverse out of park city, and straight up a mountain. Jason was kind enough to buy my ticket despite my argument, and we boarded the lift. So this is a good time to add this: I am deathly afraid of heights. Never used to be, but since falling several times and the last one actually breaking my back in two places, I am a little bit of a pussy, to be honest. As luck would have it, so was Jason. So as we nervously traversed up the ridge, we both felt somewhat content in the fact that we were just as scared of the chair lift stopping, blowing in the wind, the random bird...whatever came across our windshield. We traveled up two ridges, and followed what looked like an old ski lift run, far above park city, until it came to a turn around at what looked like...as luck would have it. a Mine? the lady that boarded us down at park city did say that once we reached the ridge, we could jump off and explore, walk around...which we gladly took her up on the offer. In front, a large structure, obviously closed down for years, stood like a mammoth to face us. old rusted tin and wood held this thing up, windows broken out from either weather, or vandalism. As we stepped closer there was a sign to describe where we were at. The infamous Silver King Mine. One of the largest in park city. So we did what any curious adventurer would do....we broke in.
I love pictures. Not just for what they show and memories they make...but for what might not be covered by the naked eye. as we approached this 100 plus year old structure, I think both of us were pretty blown away by not only the history of the grounds we weree stepping on, but the history of what this place entailed. we made our way around the backside where there was a tiny area where tin was bent back...almost crawling into the building, we slithered our way in. and wow. just wow...old ancient rusted remnants of burners, the main boiler...a mix of age and turn of the century engineering melded to make a surreal scene. we stumbled down past the boiler room, and found a track...more than likely what the ore cars would follow, only to have the shit scared out of me by a rock chuck. Just chillin..trying to just wander through his play land that we invaded. The wind blowing caused the slaps of tin turning back and forth, which needless to say was a bit unnerving. I personally couldn't help but feel overwhelmed by the atmosphere, the foreboding...of this place. A feeling of dread, hard living, trauma.....All enveloped me as we continued to watch our step and explore the wasteland that once made or broke every man who walked into it. We stumbled through the machinery room, the main shaft where the Miners loaded and went down over 1,400 ft....where they grabbed tools and a car and began there job in a makeshift environment where humans more than likely didn't belong. Very surreal is putting it lightly. As we gathered our nerve, we continued through, and back out to the small torn opening we initially entered .. I will be the first one to admit that as I visited outside again, a huge weight was lifted. Fun adventure, but the blanket of either knowing we weren't supposed to be there, or the fact that the spirits that were there didn't want us there...either way, a relief I must say.
I haven't went through my pictures yet, and there will be recordings on this blog, but I was so excited to post this, I wanted to put it out. Enjoy everyone....Close the gates.