Isham Canyon Area
Isham Canyon, the Stockwell Mine, Manly Pass, and Fish Canyon are the main sites of interest in this area. The fact that a dirt road crosses the Slate Range here draws a lot of people to this area. Further, Isham Canyon is an attraction to off-roaders into rock crawling as the last half mile of the canyon below Manly Pass provides a formidable obstacle course which challenges their skills and equipment. (Click here for area map.)


Fish From Top (March 2016)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Beavertail #1 - Plenty of flowers on this common cactus.
  2. Beavertail #2 - The plant seems to have been partially buried during a recent storm.
  3. Father Fish Monument #1 - This is the upper-most of the informational signs.
  4. Father Fish Monument #2 - A full view of the informational sign.
  5. Father Fish Monument #3 - Looking through the sign from the back.
  6. Mojave Groundsel - Not the most amazing flowers, but the leaves are interesting!
  7. Seed Puff - Most likely Desert Chicory of the Sunflower Family.
  8. Bottle-Washer - Interesting member of the Evening Primrose Family.
  9. Coreopsis - Still plentiful, but past peak bloom.
  10. Golden Evening Primrose - Yet another member of the Evening Primrose Family.

Isham West Loop (March 2016)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Dune Evening-Primrose #1 - I encountered one large colony of this attractive plant.
  2. Dune Evening-Primrose #2 - The colony probably included over two hundred plants.
  3. Dune Evening-Primrose #3 - Some appeared to be infected with some kind of a fungus.
  4. Dune Evening-Primrose #4 - Other plants looked quite healthy and uninfected.
  5. Desert Sand Verbena - I only saw a dozen or so of these plants through the course of the hike.
  6. Isham Marker - BLM route marker in the same place as in the last set of images.
  7. Rock Daisy #1 - Lots of these members of the Sunflower Family in the canyons.
  8. Wash Flowers - Rock daisy, prickly poppy, and brittlebush thriving in Isham side canyon.
  9. Rock Daisy #2 - More Perityle emoryi in Isham side canyon.
  10. Escape Trail - Two of these markers are placed along a trail which is not the actual Escape Trails.

Isham West Loop (January 2015)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Isham Marker - BLM route marker just before rough section of Isham Canyon.
  2. Interesting Rocks - One of the rocks almost looks like a teeter totter.
  3. More Rocks - Telescope Peak can be seen in the background.
  4. ET Sign #1 - An ET sign in Slate Range near Fish Canyon.
  5. ET Sign #2 - Manly Peak can be seen in the background.
  6. ET Sign #3 - ET stands for Escape Trail, BTW.
  7. Radio Facility - This facility is located at the end of Quarry Road.
  8. Donkey Trail - A donkey trail leading to the top of a ridge.
  9. Tortoise Shell - The remains of an intrepid desert dweller.
  10. Wash Obstacle - A rock obstacle located in an unnamed wash.

Isham Canyon Loop (November 2013)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Desert Puffball - There were several of these scattered around here and there.
  2. Mojave Aster #1 - Only a few of these were observed on this hike.
  3. Golden Evening Primrose - A few of these were producing flowers.
  4. Brittlebush #1 - This flower was abundant throughout the area.
  5. Button Encelia #1 - This plant was also producing lots of flowers.
  6. Rock Daisy - A couple groups of these were observed.
  7. Brown-Eyed Evening Primrose - A small number of these plants were in bloom.
  8. Brittlebush #2 - Encelia farinosa of the Sunflower Family.
  9. Cheesebush - Interesting member of the Sunflower Family.
  10. Creosote - Lots of creosote bushes producing flowers.
  11. Button Encelia #2 - No ray flowers on flowerheads!
  12. Wishbone Bush - Lots of buds, but no flowers.
  13. Mojave Aster #2 - Close look at flower from the side.
  14. Indigo Bush - Scattered plants were producing a small number of flowers.
  15. Brittlebush #3 - Even more brittlebush!

Slate Benchmark (May 2013)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Fish Road #1 - Road dropping into Fish Canyon and continuing to Panamint Valley.
  2. Beavertail #1 - Bright pink beavertail cactus flower.
  3. Yucca Fruits - Yuccas with unripe seed pods.
  4. Yucca Colony - A large group of yuccas growing at about 4700 feet.
  5. Manly Peak - A group of yucca plants posing for the camera in front of Manly Peak.
  6. Beavertail #2 - A beavertail cactus with several flowers and forming fruit.
  7. Rock Hut - Stone remains of an old hut along old donkey trail.
  8. Fish Road #2 - Another look at road descending into Fish Canyon.
  9. Ephedra #1 - Female seed cones on ephedra plant.
  10. Ephedra #2 - Also known as Joint Fir or Mormon Tea.
  11. Telescope Peak - Fresh snow on Telescope following May storm.
  12. Slate Benchmark - Stone with elevation of Slate Benchmark etched into it.
  13. Yucca Grove - Large number of yuccas growing just north of Slate Benchmark.
  14. Panamint View - Group of yucca posing for camera with Panamint Range in background.
  15. Mojave Aster - Member of Sunflower Family blooming by the trail.

Fish Canyon Loop (March 2013)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Manly Area - Northwestern end of Slate Range as seen from near Manly Pass.
  2. Coreopsis - Sometimes also called tickseed this wildflower was scattered throughout area.
  3. Little Gold Poppy #1 - Another wildflower scattered throughout the area.
  4. Fiesta Flower - Found growing in shade of rocks and shrubs in washes.
  5. Blazing Star #1 - This was the most prevalent wildflower on this hike!
  6. Blazing Star #2 - Mentzelia albicaulis or Small Flowered Blazing Star, to be more exact.
  7. Yellow Frocks - Small member of the Sunflower Family encountered often on this hike.
  8. Panamint View - Looking north up Panamint Valley from a mile southeast of Fish Canyon.
  9. Briggs Mine - Mining operation at the base of the Panamint Range a few miles south of Ballarat.
  10. Brittlebush #1 - Also known as Incienso and a member of the Sunflower Family.
  11. Brittlebush #2 - Lots of this plant found throughout loop.
  12. Golden Evening Primrose #1 - Also sometimes called Yellow Cups.
  13. Golden Evening Primrose #2 - Lots of this in Fish Canyon, but encountered throughout the hike.
  14. Little Gold Poppy #2 - Another specimen of this small-flowered species of poppy.
  15. Desert Pincushion - Lots of these wildflowers found in Fish Canyon especially.
  16. P168 - Sign where the road from Searles Valley reaches the bottom of Fish Canyon.
  17. Escape Trail #1 - This sign is located near the P168 sign.
  18. Lesser Mohavea - Sometimes also called Desert Snapdragon, I only saw a few clusters of these.
  19. Bottle-Washer - Another member of the Evening Primrose Family.
  20. Escape Trail #2 - One of two signs a mile or so up from the P168 sign.
  21. Fish Canyon Loop Route Description

Isham Canyon Area (July 2011)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Road Closed - Markers indicating that trail between the Stockwell Mine and the road to Fish Canyon is not open to motorized vehicles.
  2. Desert Trumpet #1 - Close look at tiny flowers of this summer bloomer.
  3. Desert Trumpet #2 - Another look at tiny flowers of Eriogonum inflatum.
  4. Desert Trumpet #3 - An even closer look at flower of this member of the Buckwheat Family.
  5. Desert Trumpet #4 - The Buckwheat Family is more properly referred to as the Polygonaceae.
  6. Desert Trumpet #5 - View of entire plant.
  7. Desert Trumpet #6 - Close look at base of plant.
  8. Desert Trumpet #7 - An even closer close up view of tiny flower.
  9. Desert Trumpet #8 - Another full plant view. Notice that flowers are so tiny they are barely visible.
  10. Horny Toad - Small lizard gently cradled in my hand.

Isham Canyon Area (March 2010)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Coreopsis - This flower was reasonably abundant, but not so much as last year.
  2. Clouds to North - The north end of Panamint Valley was quite cloudy.
  3. Mojave Aster - Asters in bloom were scattered here and there.
  4. Eriophyllum - Patches of woolly daisy starting to show up in wash areas.
  5. Chia - Chia was also plentiful.
  6. Desert Tomato - Small, white, trumpet-shaped flowers on desert tomato bushes.
  7. Desert Alyssum - Otherwise known as peppergrass.
  8. Purple Owl's Clover #1 - Mostly located on the Panamint Valley side of the crest.
  9. Purple Owl's Clover #2 - Small, but colorful little plant.
  10. Purple Owl's Clover #3 - Quite abundant at right around 3000 feet in elevation.

Isham Canyon Area (June 2009)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Turtleback #1 - Turtleback at the mouth of a canyon.
  2. Turtleback #2 - Nicely rounded turtleback plant.
  3. Turtleback #3 - Round mound on the ground.
  4. Turtleback #4 - Smaller mound by a rock.
  5. Turtleback #5 - Close up of flowers and leaves.
  6. Switchbacks - Faint switchback and tunnel.
  7. Boulder - Boulder at mouth of canyon.
  8. Canyon Bottom - Looking down canyon with boulder.
  9. Canyon Top - Looking up canyon with boulder.
  10. Another Canyon - Looking up canyon.
  11. Mine Timber #1 - Just inside mine entrance.
  12. Mine Timber #2 - Inside another mine tunnel.
  13. Tortoise Shell #1 - Remains of dead tortoise.
  14. Tortoise Shell #2 - Belly plate busted.
  15. Tortoise Shell #3 - Shell in bush as found.
  16. Rattlesnake - Rattler just below radio facility.
  17. Radio Facility - View looking north into Panamint Valley.
  18. Three Canyons - Notice roads in two of these canyons.
  19. Flat-Topped Buckwheat #1 - Basal leaves and tiny flowers.
  20. Briggs Mine - Briggs Mine June 2009.
  21. Flat-Topped Buckwheat #2 - Also known as skeleton weed.
  22. Rodent - Slow moving, it probably wasn't too healthy!
  23. --- Added August 2009 ---
  24. Explosive #1 - Groove in rock and spent explosive of some kind.
  25. Explosive #2 - Close up of explosive. There were two others nearby.
  26. ---- Added October 2009 ---
  27. BLM Sign - BLM sign knocked down near Stockwell Mine.

Isham Canyon Area (February 2009)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Brittlebush - Brittlebush in bloom along the base of the Slate Range.
  2. Golden Evening Primrose #1 - Bright yellow flowers and buds on road to Fish Canyon.
  3. Golden Evening Primrose #2 - Full plant view with lots of forming flower buds.
  4. Coreopsis #1 - Coreopsis on road to Fish Canyon.
  5. Coreopsis #2 - More coreopsis along! There was actually quite a bit in bloom!
  6. Telescope Peak - Peak shrouded in clouds and covered with snow!
  7. BLM Barrier #1 - Barrier knocked over at Manly Pass.
  8. BLM Barrier #2 - Fresh motorcycle tracks by-passing the BLM barrier.
  9. Illegal Off-Road Activity - Motorcycle tracks about a quarter mile beyond BLM barrier.
  10. Mojave Aster #1 - Mojave aster blooming near Isham Canyon.
  11. Mojave Aster #2 - Another view of aster flowers.

Isham Canyon Area (August 2008)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Canyon Mouth - Stack of rocks at the mouth of canyon west of Isham Canyon.
  2. Mojave Aster #1 - During the off-season Mojave Aster turns brown.
  3. Slate View - View looking south from ridge west of Isham Canyon.
  4. Communications Towers #1 - Looking up to the northwest at communication towers.
  5. Telescope View - Looking through saddle in Slate Range at Telescope Peak.
  6. High Point #1 - Stack of rocks at high point west of Isham Canyon looking northwest.
  7. High Point #2 - Same location as previous picture only looking east toward higher part of the Slate Range.
  8. Briggs Mine - Looking across Panamint Valley at the Briggs Mine.
  9. Communications Towers #2 - Another view of the communications towers.
  10. Mojave Aster - These plants will revive with a good rainfall. Sometimes they'll even bloom in the fall!
  11. Manly Peak - Looking across Panamint Valley at Manly Peak.
  12. --- Added November 2008 ---
  13. Abandoned Truck - An abandoned truck near the turn off to the road leading to Isham Canyon.
  14. BLM Barrier #1 - This barrier was recently placed near Manly Pass.
  15. Rock Ramp - A recently created rock ramp between the two BLM barriers. It was probably made a few days prior to the placement of the barriers.
  16. BLM Barrier #2 - This barrier was recently placed at the bottom of a side canyon off of Isham Canyon.

Mouth of Fish (January/Febrary 2008)    Quick view of trip pics
    January 2008:
  1. Telescope Peak #1 - Looking across Panamint Valley near the mouth of Fish Canyon.
  2. Telescope Peak #2 - Another view of Telescope Peak taken a bit closer to what almost look like islands... or turtles!
  3. Looking North - Looking north up Panamint Valley from the top of one of the islands or turtles.
  4. Manly and Briggs - A view of Manly from atop one of the islands.
  5. Manly Peak - A view of Manly and a little to the south.
  6. Telescope #3 - Another view of Telescope as sunset approaches.
  7. February 2008:
  8. Dry Fall - Dry fall at the top of canyon just west of Fish Canyon.
  9. Chalk #1 - Chalk outcropping in same canyon.
  10. Chalk #2 - A road led to this outcropping and stopped there.
  11. Mushroom #1 - Mushroom down in Panamint Valley just below mouth to canyon.
  12. Mushroom #2 - Another view of little mushroom.

Fish Canyon (May 2007)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Father Fish - Memorial with information about Father Fish.
  2. View From Above - Memorials from above.
  3. Trail Sign - ET trail sign pointing way to next memorial.
  4. Upper Canyon #1 - Wash in upper portion of Fish Canyon.
  5. Upper Canyon #2 - Another view of upper portion of Fish Canyon.
  6. Fish Road - Road to Fish Canyon.
  7. Double Mine Marker - Two stacks of rocks a mile south of the Stockwell Mine. This stack of rocks is actually just about midway between the Stockwell and the Ophir.
  8. Fish Canyon Road - A view of the road leading to Fish Canyon taken from a ridge to the south.
  9. Mine Marker - A mine marker about half way between the Ophir and Stockwell mines.
  10. Stockwell - The large T on the side of the mountain in the background is part of the disturbance caused by the Stockwell Mine. The picture was taken about a mile south of the Stockwell.

Isham Area (June 2006)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Dead Cholla #1 - Dead cholla near Isham Canyon.
  2. Dead Cholla #2 - More cholla skeletons.
  3. Dead Cholla #3 - Argus Peak in background.
  4. Dead Cholla #4 - Another standing, but dead cactus.
  5. Dead Cholla #5 - Fairly tall, but deceased specimen.
  6. Dead Cholla #6 - Another good-sized cactus that died.
  7. Dead Cholla #7 - Quite large, but all dried up.
  8. --- Added December 2006 ---
  9. Isham Intersection #1 - Ruins at beginning of road to Isham.
  10. Isham Intersection #2 - More ruins of mining operation.
  11. Isham Intersection #3 - Concrete walls and refuse.
  12. Isham Intersection #4 - Ruins from a distance with Slate Range behind them.
  13. Isham Intersection #5 - Another view of ruins from a distance.

Fish Canyon (May 2006)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Escape Trail - Close up view of ET trail sign.
  2. Fish Story (part one) - The story of the Escape Trail and Fish Canyon.
  3. Fish Story (part two) - Part two of the coninuing saga.
  4. Fish Story (part three) - Some important dates.
  5. Fish Story (part four) - The Silent Sepulcre and Bennett and Arcane.
  6. Fish Story (part five) - Two signs in one picture!
  7. Gold Covered Hillside - Flowers on hillside.
  8. Panamint View - View across valley from mouth of Fish Canyon.
  9. Manly Peak #1 - Southern end of Panamint Range from Fish Canyon.
  10. Manly Peak #2 - West side of peak from just below Fish.
  11. Briggs Mine - This is a view of the Briggs Mine taken from the area around Chess Canyon from a ridge in the Slate Range.
  12. Chess Canyon - Old sign found near horse trail which goes by Chess Canyon.
  13. Claim Papers #1 - Claim papers showing name of mine claim and the date on which the claim was filed. The "Spark Plug #1" claim was filed on "March 23, 1975" according to these documents.
  14. Claim Papers #2 - More information on the mine claim mostly pertaining to the location of the claim. The names of those filing the claim are also shown here.
  15. Panamint Hills - Looking north from ridge near Chess Canyon.
  16. Claim Marker #1 - View of claim marker looking down Chess Canyon toward Panamint Valley.
  17. Claim Marker #2 - Closer view of claim marker which shows the rusty can which contains the claim papers.
  18. --- OLDER PICTURES ---
  19. Eriogonum - Some eriogonum in bloom during Spring 2005
  20. Escape Trail Sign #1 - ET sign near Manly Pass
  21. Rocks on Ridge - Rocks on ridge near Manly Pass

Stockwell Mine (May 2006)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Stockwell Flagpole - Foundation, flagpole, and stairs.
  2. Stockwell Tunnel One #1 - Entrance to tunnel one at Stockwell.
  3. Stockwell Tunnel One #2 - Looking into tunnel one.
  4. Stockwell Tunnel One #3 - Far view of tunnel one.
  5. Stockwell Tunnel Two #1 - Entrance to tunnel two.
  6. Stockwell Tunnel Two #2 - Another view of entrance to tunnel two.
  7. Stockwell Tunnel Two #3 - Looking into tunnel two.
  8. Stockwell Tunnel Two #4 - Far view of tunnel two.
  9. Stockwell Tunnel Three - Entrance to tunnel three.
  10. Upper Stockwell #1 - Tunnels at upper workings of Stockwell.
  11. Upper Stockwell #2 - Another view of upper workings.
  12. Road to Fish - Part of the road to Fish Canyon just after the Goff Canyon turnoff.
  13. Stockwell Area From South - Distant view of Stockwell area.
  14. Goff Canyon Road - Road into Stockwell Mine area.
  15. Aires Mine #1 - This mine is located to the west of Stockwell.
  16. Aires Mine #2 - Another view of mine area.
  17. Aires Mine #3 - See interesting story about shaft on map page.
  18. Donkeys #1 - Two donkeys near the Stockwell Mine.
  19. Donkeys #2 - Another picture of the same animals.
  20. Tunnel South - This is a tunnel in the canyon to the south of Goff Canyon. A road leads all the way up to this tunnel.

Isham Canyon (May 2006)    Quick view of trip pics
  1. Isham Obstacles #1 - Obstacles near top of canyon.
  2. Isham Obstacles #2 - More obstacles!
  3. Isham Obstacles #3 - More obstacles!
  4. Isham Obstacles #4 - More obstacles!
  5. Isham Obstacles #5 - More obstacles!
  6. Isham Obstacles #6 - More obstacles!
  7. Isham Obstacles #7 - More obstacles!
  8. Isham Obstacles #8 - Lowest of obstacles in canyon.
  9. Escape Trail Sign - ET sign at mouth of Isham Canyon.
  10. Jeep in Isham Canyon - Jeep parked right below rough portion of Isham Canyon.
  11. Middle Part of Isham - The middle portion of Isham. This is a view of the pull out used in the "Jeep In Isham Canyon" picture (only the Jeep isn't there in this picture).
  12. Top Part of Isham #1 - This picture shows a view of the top portion of Isham Canyon.
  13. Top Part of Isham #2 - This picture shows another view of the top portion of Isham Canyon. The trail through this section of the canyon appears to be set up as an obstacle course by offroad enthusiasts. There is a lot of evidence of dirt road creation in the area.
  14. Mouth of Isham - The mouth to Isham Canyon.
  15. Unnamed Canyon #1 - Small fall in unnamed canyon east of Isham.
  16. Unnamed Canyon #2 - Narrow portion of canyon.
  17. Unnamed Canyon #3 - Looking out of mouth of canyon towards Trona.
  18. Canyon Bottom - Looking down lower portion of canyon from above.
  19. Ramp - Rock ramp illegally constructed by off-road extremists.
  20. Skull in Wash - Small skull found in upper portion of canyon.
  21. Raven Nest - Raven sitting on nest of twigs.
  22. Trona View - Looking across valley towards Trona.
  23. View of Trona Plant - Another view of Trona from Slate Range.
  24. Maturango Peak - Maturango is the large peak in the background. The peak with the radio facility on it is part of the Slate Range.
  25. Animal Trail - Faint trail through cholla just west of Isham Canyon in Searles Valley.
  26. Six Foot Cholla - This cholla was slightly more than six feet in height. It was located a few hundred yards west of the entrance to Isham Canyon.
  27. --- October 2006 ---
  28. Owl #1 - Owl perched on boulder above bottom part of canyon.
  29. Owl #2 - Another picture of owl.
Back to top of page
All photographs
Copyright © 2003-2023