We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Goler Wash/ Mengel Pass 4x4 Trail

Many interesting mines and cabins to see, including Charles Manson Hideout
id_3124179

Content provided by

Difficulty: Strenuous
Length: 15.6 miles
Duration: Full day
Family Friendly

Overview:  Camp nearby in the ghost town of Ballarat. Along the trail, see mines and outstanding Adopt-a-Cabins including Barker Ranch, once the ... more »

Tips:  Make sure your gas tank is full and carry plenty of water. Not recommended in the summer. Dangerously hot. Always carry lots of water ... more »

Take this guide with you!

Save to mobile
Get this guide & thousands of others on your mobile phone
EveryTrail guides are created by travelers like you.
  1. 1. Download the EveryTrail app from the App Store
  2. 2. Search for the Goler Wash/ Mengel Pass 4x4 Trail guide
  3. 3. Enjoy your self-guided tour
Get the app

Points of Interest

1. Start Here

Follow Google mapping directions from Ballarat Ghost Town south on Wingate Road to this point and head west.

2. Enter Goler Wash

Conditions vary here. After storms, the trail can wash out and be nearly impassable. If repairs have been made, the road may be freshly graded and very easy. Just depends on the weather.

3. Newman Cabin to Right

Short side trip to right ends as interesting Newman Cabin. Please close door of cabin to stop burros from getting inside and destroying everything. Return to this point and continue on main road.

4. Lotus Mine to Right

A nasty side road to right goes past some ruins and climbs to Lotus Mine.

5. Turn for Barker Ranch

You'll enter Death Valley National Park just before an important road that goes right and ends at Barker Ranch, hideout for the famous killer Charles Manson. Unlicensed vehicle must turn around at park boundary.

6. Charles Manson Hideout

Road ends at Barker Ranch. Turn around here and return to main route.

7. Mengel Pass

A large grave marker identifies Mengel Pass. This is the rockiest and steepest part of the trail. Continue down the other side.

8. Side Trip to Russell Cabin

Turn left then left again in short distance to see very interesting Russel Cabin.

9. Russel Cabin

Road ends at very interesting Russel Cabin, an Adopt-a-Cabin in Death Valley National Park, available on first-come, first-serve basis.

10. Mengels Cabin

Location of Mengels Cabin and Greater View Spring.

11. Geologist's Cabin

Location of well preserved Geologist's Cabin, made of stone. Also an Adopt-a-Cabin and usually in the best condition.

12. Exit Point Through Butte Valley

Easier road heads northeast through Butte Valley to Highway 178, where a left turn will take you to Furnace Creek, where full services are available.