Come with me and explore four sites off of Abandoned Highway 80! The stops include abandoned buildings, hotels, railroads, caves, and a California monument! Directions and Pictures are fully included.
The adventure begins about an hour drive east from San Diego. Desert View Tower, our first stop, is the most eastern part and we moved in west as we continued.
– Desert Tower and Boulder Park –
These stone caves are BOULDER PARK and are located on the same grounds as DESERT VIEW TOWER, a California Historical Monument. There is parking and it is free to walk the grounds but there is a $6 fee to explore the caves.
First of all, the drive there feels like you are in the middle of absolutely nowhere. As far as you can see all around you are rocky brown hills, and a few white windmills.
When you get there you can walk up to Desert View Tower. Less than 50 feet away is Boulder Park, the stone caves pictured above. There were animals, skulls, and Indian Chief paintings throughout the caves.
What is a little strange about this area is there is Desert View Tower, Boulder Park, murals and more abandoned things on these grounds, as well as what felt like someone’s property. There were two houses that people resided in and their dogs were running around freely, and their peacock (YES, PEACOCK) was just standing majestically in its cage.
Funny enough, the picture above is the outside of the bathroom. Right past the entrance to Boulder Park and before the giant peacock.
Last notable part of these grounds was this abandoned car, and I was absolutely obsessed with it. It was so withered and worn so many intricate details were popping out of it.
I wish I could know what type of car it is, how old it is, who the owners were or why they abandoned it, but alas we were left with no answers, just an intriguing view.
– In-Ko-Pah Buildings –
Our next stop was this abandoned area (below) within walking distance from Desert View Tower.
It had four buildings and a fake news program set up. I believe there were once tvs there, which are now just shards of glass.
Leaving Desert View Tower, take In-Ko-Pah Park Road South West.
You will quickly pass Coyote’s Flying Saucer Repair, which is exactly what it sounds like, broken down flying saucers on the side of the road. But they are pretty neat to look at! And then these buildings will be on your right hand side. It is less than a mile away, you can’t miss it.
Exact Location can be found on Google Maps HERE but shouldn’t be difficult to find at all.
This stone building was absolutely gorgeous on the outside.
The doorways and windows seemed pretty sturdy. However the inside was completely rusted and paved with glass shards and splintering wood. Definitely bring sturdy shoes if you plan to go in!
-Carrizo Gorge Railroad –
Next is Carrizo Gorge Railroad. It is about 10 minutes away from the last stop.
To get there, head Southeast onto In-Ko-Pah Park Road.
Turn LEFT toward Highway 80 (follow the signs)
Turn RIGHT onto HIghway 80.
Take this all the way down and turn RIGHT onto Railroad Street.
It is 5.5 miles out. You will pass the airport but if you pass Jacumba Hotel (as pictured as the next stop) you have gone too far!
Exact Location HERE.
This depot was active from 1920-1950 but could not withstand fire, earthquakes, and floods and was not worth the cost to repair.
A lot of this railroad is private property. These are the only trains that can be viewed.
The wooden trains (above) were particularly admirable. Inside you can still see a few chairs and lights.
I did not go in, nor would I encourage anyone to, treat it delicately.
– Jacumba Hotel –
The last stop for Abandoned Historic Highway Part 1, is Old Jacumba Hotel.
Coming from Carrizo Gorge Railroad, travel back to Highway 80 (south) from Railroad Street and make a right onto Highway 80.
It is not far from there, it should be on the next street over, Jacumba Street, and will be on your right hand side.
Exact Location HERE.
From the hotel you can see the gate to Mexico, it is less than half a mile away!
Although it was a small stop, this is probably one of my favorites. These are the remains of Jacumba Hotel.
It’s hard to believe that 100 years ago this was a world class hotel and just 50 years ago this ghost town still attracted Hollywood actors. It was mysteriously destroyed in an arson fire in 1983.
Click HERE to see an original photo of Jacumba Hotel when it was up and running.
Abandoned Highway 80 is definitely worth the trip! We spent about 5 hours traveling to and around these 4 stops and really enjoyed it!
I will be travelling back soon to get to a few other stops we didn’t have time for, so make sure to subscribe to see what else can be found out there!
Which of these was your favorite location? I’d love to hear, comment it below!
Feel free to contact me with any questions.
Good luck Adventuring!
check up HERE to see if Part II is up yet!