Ex Trailer Trash

Cycles of History

This is a photo-heavy entry. I’ve posted a few pictures here and there, but continue to post more here than anywhere else.

The majority of these are monochrome/sepia edits. It’s my favorite photo treatment by far, and one where I feel I do it justice.

All these were taken over the weekend.

This small tank was elevated above the floor of the small valley where it sat. I’m not sure it held water, small as it was. The size and location of its exit pipe could be water or possibly grain, I suppose. I adore the moodiness of this photo!

elevated tank

I will have a couple of color or color-including pictures in this batch, but most will be sepia. The subject matter screamed “history” to me, so the sepia seemed fitting.

You’d better believe we were on dirt roads over the weekend. Stormtrooper’s trip counter said we did over 100 miles before we turned around and headed home, and most of that distance was off the pavement.


We’re not afraid of dirt roads. They crook invisible fingers at us, beckoning us to come adventuring.

We thought we’d seen everything within an hour’s driving distance. Imagine how happy we were to discover new spots – including a mountain range we didn’t know existed! The most rugged peaks in this image are the Silver Bell mountains. There’s a ghost town and old silver mine at their base. We’re debating whether it’s worth the risk to try and find them, as the area is tough to reach and a known route for illegals and their coyotes.


I saved this mountains-through-the-fence shot both in color and in sepia. I love both enough I was tempted to post both – but decided to stick with the color so you could get a feel for the day. Some people would call the hazy overcast skies gloomy. I call them magnificent.

I took photos of this ruined house from two angles: the front….


…and the back.


Both have their charms. If ever there were a place where ghosts inhabit, this must be it.

Despite the rough look of the picture below, there’s a ranchette there somewhere. Most of it was hidden by a thick wall of mesquite, Arizona ash, and piñon pine. The modern phone numbers are a giveaway to its relative modernity, though it’s been decades since this area had a 602 area code.


It was in an area not far Red Rock, Arizona – which we didn’t know existed as a community prior to the weekend excursion. We’d seen the water tower before, on  the other side of the highway.


The tower is the only photo not taken over the weekend. I took it back in July. We had no clue there was a Red Rock community on the other side of the freeway. We discovered it by accident this weekend as we drove looking for back roads where we hadn’t been.

This set of corrugated metal buildings has unquestionably seen some things. The unpainted metal is adorned by time and nature, acquiring soft blooms of rust and dirt to soften its industrial lines.


The front building is fully enclosed, with nothing to hint at what hides inside.

While the building behind it…

industrial 2

…is wide open for the curious to get an eyeful.

We did hit a couple of places we’d been before. This is a different angle of an abandoned storefront we photographed several months ago.


I adore the character of abandoned or semi-abandoned areas. I don’t know if this corner has, or ever had, a name. It’s on a corner of Green Reservoir Road and Sunshine Boulevard, very much in the middle of nowhere.


As you can see, there’s not much else there – the metal industrial buildings I included in this post sit across the road, due north of the storefront. Catty-corner is some type of business building – I don’t recall what it said on the sign. Otherwise, there’s nothing else for miles except fields, crumbling ruins, and the occasional ranch house or barn. There isn’t a place name on Google Maps, so it doesn’t qualify as a ghost town. It’s so remote, I can’t fathom a store so far out.

Given its style, condition, and location, it could be an old stagecoach stop. There are a few scattered throughout the state.

EDITED: I realized after I posted how much variation there is in the sepia treatments here, and the clarity. I don’t mind too much for now. Here’s hoping I can get more consistent results as time goes on.

4 thoughts on “Cycles of History”

  1. Those are some interesting old relics. The stories that must be buried in them would make for a good novel. A ghost town where the ghosts tell about the lives they led there.

    1. Definitely! I love the old, derelict buildings and structures, fences, etc. G also took a photo of a windmill – it’s cool but it’s not my photo, lol.

  2. Man, you live in an area of the country that just screams for the sepia treatment. Love all these shots. The Silver Bells in the distance was also an excellent capture, though, and maybe one of my favorites of this set. Great job, all! And fwiw, many of us hope for overcast days to shoot. Not only does it make for a more interesting, even dramatic, sky, but it also casts a much softer light. See how little shadow there is from the posts? This is perfect outdoor portrait conditions – if you ever have a human subject around take advantage of it!

    Well done 🙂

    1. Thank you!

      None of these were taken huge distances from our house, but we put on a lot of miles because of winding down back roads. And yeah – these kinds of places are 100% my favorite – and if you go rolling down the back roads you’re nearly guaranteed to find SOMETHING old and cool. 🙂

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