new idria ghost town

Photos by Tristan Savatier

New Idria is a ghost town located in a remote area of the Diablo Range of California, outside of Hollister.­ It was once a center for mercury (quick silver) and asbestos mining.­ New Idria was at its peak well before the Gold Rush in California of the 1840s and 60s.­ There are still high levels of mercury and asbestos polution in the area.­

If you don't mind ignoring all the No Trespasing posted signs, you can visit an amazing mercury smelter with four large Gould rotary furnances.­ This smelter was abandoned in the 1970's.­ All those photos were taken in May 2004.­

It is not recommended to drink the bright orange water from the streams in this area, but cattle don't have problems grazing in the nearby fields.­ Scary! The orange color is said to be iron oxide, not toxic mercury oxide.­

Equipment used: Sony DSC F828 (8 Mega-pixel) with 4GB Microdrive.­

For more information you can visit the New Idria Preservation Project (www.­new-idria.­org).­

UPDATE: New Idria is now inaccessible! As of May 2008, approximately 31,000 acres of the Clear Creek Management Area, which includes New Idria, has been CLOSED by order of the Bureau of Land Management, with official reason stating the danger of the naturally-occurring asbestos in the soil.­ The road leading to New Idria is gated and locked approximately one mile from the townsite, and area is being patrolled by state officials - they will arrest or cite you for trespassing.­ You can find out more information at www.­blm.­gov/­ca/­st/­en/­fo/­hollister/­clear_­creek_­management_­.­.­.­ for the most up-to-date news and information.­

If you are also interested by urban exploration, i.­e.­ exploring disused buildings and factories, abandoned tunnels, etc, check out www.­urban-resources.­net, an excellent database of photography books and other resources on this subject.­

Come to real Idrija town much cooler then New idria wich the name was after google it ;)
I went to New Idria October 29 2011, the New Idria road from Panoce road was open all the way to the site and beyond. There were no weird people there, we roamed around freely. We arrived just as the EPA were setting up their base camp for the remediation work. Yes one of the roads from the Clear Creek side was fenced, but the BLM field office assured me that for the time being New Idria road would remain open.
That wacko's name was dan, and yes, he's gone.
Was there this spring, some wacko with a rifle was roaming around trying to be scarry He seemed to think he was invisable, what a jack ass. cool buildings the canned goods in the store were very interesting, too bad there has been some vandellism and some things remain untouched. definately worth the trip just ignore wacko if hes even still there.
my mom grew up here, and i was looking for some info on this place, great site!
so those skin-head milicia men were actually state employees, it would appear...!
UPDATE: New Idria is now inaccessible! As of May 2008, approximately 31,000 acres of the Clear Creek Management Area, which includes New Idria, has been CLOSED by order of the Bureau of Land Management, due to the danger of the naturally-occurring asbestos in the soil. The road leading to New Idria is gated and locked approximately one mile from the townsite, and area is being patrolled by state officials - they will arrest or cite you for trespassing. You can find out more information at [url removed - click "Add a Comment" to view url]... for the most up-to-date news and information.
no, it's not really haunted :)
well my friends drove through there yesterday with friends and they were terrfied to get out but want to go back and see if it is really haunted
I've been there, but I was run off by an army of skinheads on dirt-bikes. It was crazy. My brother, friend and I were driving along Hwy 33 and hadn't seen a person for about an hour when all of a sudden this guy in full safari garb (looked kind of like Robin Williams in Jumanji) walked out into the middle of the road and stopped us. He asked us where we were going, we told him we were just passing through. Right then about 20 skinheads on dirt-bikes pull up behind him from out of no where. He told us the road was closed. So we turned around and went home. Weird. I'd love to go back just for the weirdness factor, but I don't want to deal with any militiamen.
I would love to go there to take some picture. it is my hobby