Tucked far away up Goler Canyon in the southern Panamint Range is a secret old miner’s cabin that is now used by modern day explorers as an overnight camp. Newman’s cabin has been around up here for about eighty years so far, being fixed up from time to time by considerate folks who use it, to keep ahead of the vandals that wreck it.
It was built by Wilmot (Billy) Hyder (1877-1954), a local resident of Ballarat. Cousin Will, as he was called by Hallett Newman, was a family cousin. The reason the cabin is not called the Hyder cabin is due to the fact that after Billy died, Hal and his father started working and maintaining the assessment work on the claims. They were working out here enough that people came to know them, and few folks, if any, had knowledge of the original builder Wilmot Hyder.
The cabin’s frame is constructed from materials salvaged from the Wingate monorail. The siding was packing crates salvaged from the Trona dump. Little improvements have been added except for the concrete floors and some structural integrity. It is still an active mining claim, and is used as a base of operation for the Newman family when they are here doing assessment work.
The site for the cabin was picked for its location, away from the rocks that occasionally roll off the hill, and above the flood waters when the upper canyon gets excessive rain. The cabin is not locked – the Newman family asks only that while enjoying our visits, we treat it with respect, as if it were our own home. Its precise location will not be revealed on the DVJ … time to go explore!
Click HERE for a report on the area by historian David A. Wright.