© Dale Tanis

I went on a trip to see the rare occurrence of Death Valley in bloom. But I also knew there were other gems just across the border in the Nevada desert I had to see. One such gem was the town of Rhyolite. I got there in the very late afternoon and had the entire town to myself. There wasn’t even a hint that anyone had been there since the town was abandoned in 1919. Entering the town, I was simultaneously awe-struck and disappointed. The town was magnificent with many partial remains including a school and a general store. But the most impressive was the three story crumbling concrete remains of the John S. Cook Bank. It was definitely the most dominating feature of the current town and was also the most breathtaking. The disappointment for me was that the sun was on the wrong side of the building!

So off to find a hotel. I found this little place with just two rooms somewhere far down the paved road that served as a highway of sorts. The proprietor was sitting in her doorway in her housecoat with a small oscillating fan turned on high. Sure she had a room! No, there were no restaurants within 50 miles (and it was getting dark). She was very kind, and after a bit of conversation and settling up for the night’s room, she offered me some of her own fried chicken “so as you don’t starve before morning!”

Early the next day, I was up before the sun rose, heading back to the ghost town. I was too early and, as the day before, was the only person for miles and miles around. I had to wait for the sun, so wait I did. And when it hit those mountains behind the bank, I knew the trip, as well as the wait, was more than I could have ever hoped for.

Edition Size
No. of Prints No of Proofs No. of Screens Image Size Paper Size
20 6 31 13 1/2" x 20" 17 1/2" x 23"
Purchase Price:    $ 400
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© Dale Tanis