Tucson, Arizona

Klondyke

Klondyke sits on the edge of the rugged Aravaipa Canyon wilderness – which might explain its wooly past.

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As its name suggests, there’s a gold rush connection in this Southern Arizona ghost town.

Swap the “Y” for an “I” and you’ve got the clue to this town’s gold rush roots. Klondyke was founded around the turn of the last century by prospectors who’d returned from the Alaskan Gold Rush. But there was never gold mined here, just lead and silver. The town’s population peaked at 500, but has dwindled to about a dozen hearty cattle ranchers.

This is imposing, untamed country. The Galiuro Mountains rise to the south, the Santa Teresa Mountains loom in the north, and the land is characterized by classic desert vegetation including thick stands of mesquite trees and a carpet of prickly pear cacti. The desert denizens who call it home – mountain lions – are said to roam here. During the Great Depression the town lost half its population, and, by 1955, the post office had closed, all but killing the town. What remains are the Klondyke General Store, Power’s Cabin – the infamous site of a 1918 shootout – and a cemetery. The town holds a place in the National Historic Register of Places.

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Just The Facts

For Visitor information

GhostTowns.com | AZ www.ghosttowns.com/states/az/klondyke.html

County It all started How High? Head Count
Graham 1900 3,465ft 12