Middlegate We Visited: 10/6/2001 and 7/12/2003
39 17' 15"N, 118 01' 30"W - WEST GATE quad

Directions: East on US 50 for 47.2 miles; turn right for Middelgate "station" or continue on US 50 2.3 miles for Middlegate "gate."

From Fallon: 47.4 miles

What Was

Middlegate was one of Simpson's camping spots in 1859, and later became a stage stop on the Overland route.

Named by James Simpson in 1850, commisioned by the government to define the route west, he identified the cuts in the mountains as "gates." The Gold Rush increased traffic acorss the great desert, and in 1859 the Overland Stage built Middlegate Statino to service the stage and freight lines traveling across the country. The Pony Express used Middlegate Station as a changing station during their short eighteen month history.

At the end of the Gold Rush, Middlegate fell into disuse and the ranchers and miners carried off many of the zeolite blocks used in the original construction. In 1942, Ida Ferguson bought the station at a BLM land auction and started restoration. Ten years later, she opened a bar and cafe, and enjoyed a bustling business on the historic Lincoln Highway, the first Transcontinental highway across America. But in 1962 the state re-routed the highway and business suffered. Lacking the funds to complete her dreams of resotoration, Ida sold Middlegate and retired. The business changed hands several times. There were no phones, still no electricity, and fifty miles to town- a pretty rugged existance for most people.

Then in 1984 the Stevenson's purchased the property and with the help of the Churchill County Museum, restoration again resumed. It is still a work in progress. The artifacts were all found in the area, but nothing is for sale. Enjoy your visit!

- from the back of the Middlegate Station menu

Post Office: None

Newspaper: None

What is

OK, we finally stopped here on our way back from Ellsworth. Frankly, I was just tired of cooking for Luis, he's such an ungrateful wretch. Middlegate Station is a welcome oasis in the desert- a little gas, some food, a place to stay if you need it, maybe even play a little pool and have a beer. The gal we talked to said they get a lot of business from Europeans bicycling through the area. The ceiling is covered with signed one dollar bills from all over the world- theory being that if you ever get back and you're outta cash, you'll at least have a buck for a beer.

It was dark by the time we got there, so no pictures of the outside- sorry!


Middlegate looms in the windshield as we prepare to speed through, on our way to someplace else.
This is also the location of the "shoe tree" where a local cottonwood is slowly being tortured to death by hundreds of pairs of sneakers.
UPDATE 1/2/2011 Apparently some assh*le cut down the tree.
Why not stop in for a Middlegate Monster Burger? Everyone else has.
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