Pine Grove (Lyon County) We Visited: 5/3/2003
38 40' 42"N, 119 07' 23"W - PINE GROVE SPRING quad

Directions: From Fallon, west on Highway 50 27 miles to Silver Springs; South on US 95A 33 miles to Yerington; South on SR 208 for 31.5 miles; SE on East Walker River Rd (aka Pine Grove Road or Highway 3C) for 10.2 miles; West on National Forest Road for 4.9 miles. About halfway up the road forks- take the right fork- it's flatter and smoother.

From Fallon: 84 miles

What Was

Captain Fremont had been stumbling around this area as early as 1844- it's said he saw his first pinenuts in the area. Paher mentions that the camp was at one time named Wilsonville, after the founder William Wilson, and was renamed Pine Grove two years later. At one time close to a six hundred people lived here and the mills were shipping $10,000 in gold a month- but like most mining camps, the gold ran out, and the town died in the 1930's, although some mining activity went on until the 1960's.

Jack "Wovoka" Wilson, the Numu Paiute who helped popularize the "Ghost Dance" was informally adopted and raised by one of the founders of Pine Grove, and hid there occasionally when they went looking for him.

Post Office: September 1868- November 1912

Newspaper: Pine Grove Observer, Pine Grove Burlesque, Esmeralda Sun , Pine Grove Chronicle, Pick and Shovel

What Is

Pine Grove seems to be separated into roughly three sections. The first section you come to (from the east) is a large stone ruin with a sign. Then, the mill, and what appears to be some sort of school house- at least, that's what the floorplan suggests to me. And the far end are the remains of two other large wood frame buildings. Above the camp and to the north is the graveyard. The road continues west, then south, and east, to loop around through Rockland and back to the road again. It's a pleasant drive for high-clearance vehicles.

There are assorted dumps and debris scattered about, although not as much as I expected. There are signs of many drunken slobs and cretins camping, unfortunately- the remains of their stupid little fires, graffiti, and goings on are evident everywhere. May the curse of Pine Grove infest their bowels.

Special Forgotten Nevada Correspondent Marc Conelly reports in March of 2013 that the recent fire has devastated the area. Sad face.

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