Gold King Mansion – our 2017 Subaru Outback Touring’s Maiden Voyage.
Like any Arizonian, we were suffering from serious cabin fever this August with the crazy 110+ temperatures. We decided it was time to load up the kids (including the furry one) and get out of Scottsdale for a day trip adventure. Destination? The abandoned Gold King Mansion nestled in the Hualapai Mountains – Kingman, AZ (coordinates N35.02657/W113.83694).
While my Tacoma is built more for off road, we decided our new Subaru Outback Touring would fit the family more comfortably. Plus, she was due for a maiden voyage with only 600 pavement miles on her so far. The three-hour trip was smooth sailing as we stopped briefly at “NOTHING” and Wikieup to grab snacks from our SnoMaster fridge (we never stop eating).
We took exit 66 off US-93 onto Blake Ranch Road. The grade wasn’t too heavy, and it had been well maintained. Definitely doable, especially with all-wheel drive.
It wasn’t until we got to the Gold King Mansion turnoff (look for a sign marked “Moss Wash” on the right) that things started to get a bit dicey without additional clearance, armor and a more aggressive tire.
We’d read the road to the mansion was “adventurous” and unfortunately we hadn’t dialed the Subaru in for an adventure quite this big yet. We couldn’t just drive home after coming this far, so we decided to hike the last mile. Thank God we had extra water and sunscreen on hand.
Now that our son Brix is four he can carry his own weight on these mini-expeditions with a little help from Mom. Beckham on the other hand gets to enjoy the high life in his baby carrier. I was definitely a bit jealous she got to test out the new BestMade Co SWS Patrol Pack before me.
Given the heat of the day, we tracked the trail on Waze, so we could pace ourselves and our water intake. The app also comes in handy if you easily forget where you park your car in the middle of nowhere.
After an hour walk, we caught first sight of The Gold King Mansion. It’s one of the most tucked-away places I’ve come upon.
Brixton made sure to add our names to the visitor’s log (with a little help).
The Gold King Mansion was built in 1929 by the Gold King Corporation to entertain wealthy investors and mine foreman. It was considered a place of luxury with 6-inch reinforced concrete, high arched windows and doors, and detailed wall décor. The Great Depression brought an end to the mining operation and the mansion was left behind.
We headed inside to check things out while the sun began to set. Having the kids with us and an hour hike back to the car, we couldn’t stay and explore for too long.
While the wife and kids were a bit nervous going through the different rooms, the worst we encountered was a bat that tried to land on my nose. The wife exited quickly after that.
Back outside, we topped off the baby (well, she did) and started the hike back to the car before it got dark.
I have to say, I was pretty impressed with how our family made the best of the day despite a few unexpected bumps in the road (pun intended). We are already in the planning and ordering phase of building out this family adventuremobile with products from BFG, Rotiform, Baja Designs, CVT, LP Adventure and more. I can’t wait to see where she’ll take us next!