Jakes Summit, which leads into Jakes Valley (no apostrophe) allowed passage from Ely and the Ruth Mining District to Hamilton and the west, long before the new road over Robinson Summit was completed in the twenties. Let’s first have an overview of the area. As always, click to embiggen any image in the blog.
The 1913 LHW is now not accessible in two places here: at the east end near Ruth, the road has been destroyed by mining activity; at the west end in Jakes Valley, the road no longer goes completely through Moormans Ranch.
“Mooreman”s (sic) Ranch. White Pine County. Meals, lodging, gas, oil, drinking water, radiator water, camp site, telephone.” - The Complete Official Guide of The Lincoln Highway 1916
The road through the ranch can be seen from U.S. 50 but within the ranch it has been obliterated; a “No Trespass” sign is at the gate. I did meet with the current ranch manager and his wife, both charming, and was given pointers to the ranch archives. I will be researching further on the next trip.
Getting to Jakes Summit
Currently the only reasonable approach to Jakes leaves U.S. 50 here ( 39° 24.989′N 115°12.937′W) from which you proceed south to the junction with the old road ( 39° 19.390′N 115° 12.098′W) where you turn east.
Dale Southern, a veteran Lincoln Highway traveler, kindly allowed me to use these photographs of his trip to Jakes Summit.
Dale notes that the east side of the summit needs high clearance and four wheel drive. Generally it is not recommended. Besides, the original road no longer exists there.
A little west of Moormans Ranch in the Illipah canyon you will find Rosevear ( 39° 21.122′N 115° 22.269′W) on the north side of Hwy 50. There are only ruins there now. It was listed in the 1916 guide as, “ranch not open, no accommodations.”
Brian Butko, perhaps the most well known amongst the bloggers of the Lincoln Highway, is seen here at the ruins. See his website – http://www.brianbutko.com/
Ruth and the Mining District
Although the original highway has been all but wiped out by the huge copper mining activity over the years, the mine itself is worth visiting and has a great public overlook. Turn off U.S. 50 towards Ruth and shortly follow the signs to the Liberty Pit overlook.
The size of the equipment used there is amazing. Compare the truck above with the large van nearby.
For the sake of safety, since the cab is on the left side, these monsters drive on the left side of the road so that they can see, and avoid, the edge.
One Last Thing
Between Robinson Summit and Ruth there is a nice two-mile section of the 1924 highway that can be easily driven.
My van is shown on the west end ( 39° 18.650′N 114° 59.597′W). The east end is here ( 39° 17.410′N 114° 58.025′W). There are actually many sections of the LHW that are adjacent to U.S. 50 near here and can be driven in a passenger car. Go to Google earth and explore in the vicinity.
Next Up – Ely
As always, travel wisely. You are responsible for yourself.