Stopping at Boron

So, driving down the highway through the Mohave Desert, Cindy V. says, “I’ve always wondered what the Boron/Borax place was.” Or she said something very similar to that.

We decided to find out.

We drove down a road that meandered back to a large grouping of silos and building rising up from the desert floor – the only buildings anywhere in site.

Way back more than 100 years ago, a man named Dr. J.K. Suckow was attempting to drill a hold in the desert floor – looking for water. What he actually discovered was colemanite – a borax ore.

Other men heard about the find and began staking out the mine.  The Pacific Coast Borax Company staked out several of those claims, including the original.

In 1924, Dr. Suckow drilled again and found basalt at 180 feet and a short time later, more coleminite. In 1925 another deposit of borax was discovered. This is now the world’s largest borax mine and the largest open-pit mine in California. Half of the world’s borates come from this mine which employs more than 800 people.

We were the only ones at the visitor’s center and because we didn’t have much time, we didn’t take time to see the video – just walked around the exhibit and then walked up the EXTREMELY WINDY ramp to see the mine. Took a couple pictures, but since it was EXTREMELY WINDY, we didn’t stay very long.

An educational stop for sure. If you’re driving by, it’s worth the stop.



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