A storm rises over Bodie, California, a small ghost town located in the hills of the Sierra Nevadas.

Visiting the Ghost Town of Bodie California

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Bodie California is a small ghost town located in the hills of the Sierra Nevadas, not too far from the incredible Mono Lake.

Visiting the Ghost Town of Bodie California travel, north-america, california

What was once a thriving mining town with a few thousand residents and around 2,000 standing structures has since been reduced to a city of standing decaying.

At its peak there were more than 64 saloons that lined Main Street, and today there is just a desolate stretch of landscape now protected by the Bodie State Historic Park.

Bodie California

Bodie California Weather

Bodie California sits at just over 8,000 feet, thus the weather is moderated by the high altitude.

Bodie’s weather consists of dry, hot summers and long, cold winters, filled with snow.

The harsh weather of Bodie, California is characterized by the high altitude and the exposed plateau upon which the town was founded in 1876.

Bodie California

Visiting Bodie California

Visitors arrive mainly via State Route 270, which runs from Highway 395 near Bridgeport just to the west; but beware the last three miles of it is a dirt road, although it isn’t rough and any car should be fine.

Bodie California

Today the Bodie State Historic Park receives some 200,000 visitors per year who come to see this ghost town and imagine what life must have been like so many years ago.

The Ghost Town of Bodie California makes for a great day trip and an interesting look back into a time now eroded by time and the harsh climate.

What Else is There To Do?

Bodie makes a great addition to any road trip or travels around the Eastern Sierra, but it is by no means the only thing to see and do nearby.

I’d encourage you to make a stop at the nearby Mono Lake to see the many shorebirds or visit the wild tufa formations that form off shore.

Mono Lake California

You can head further south to see the highest peak in the Lower 48, Mount Whitney. If you’re feeling like some outdoor adventures, you can also hike to the very summit, or rock climb Mount Whitney.

The town of Lone Pine which sits just below Mount Whitney is also a pleasant place to stop and explore. The nearby Alabama Hills were (and occasionally still are) a popular place to film Hollywood movies.

Visiting the Ghost Town of Bodie California travel, north-america, california

There is even a film museum in Lone Pine where you can learn about the storied history of this industry in the area.

Plus the gnarly rock formations and arches of the Alabama Hills are an incredible sight to see in and of themselves.

It’s possible to find lots of free camping hidden among the boulders of the Alabama Hills, or you can stay for a small fee at the Tuttle Creek Campground, run by the BLM (Bureau of Land Management).

Where is Bodie California?

Bodie California Map via Google

Traveling to Bodie California on your next trip? Book the perfect room in a nearby town on Booking.com today!

Wish you could travel more? Click here to grab my free resources for affordable, long-term travel.


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Visiting the Ghost Town of Bodie California travel, north-america, california


Head Writer and Adventurer at Desk to Dirtbag
Ryan is an author, adventurer, perpetual wanderer, and self-proclaimed dirtbag (but that might not mean what you think). Originally from Seattle, he headed to Washington D.C. where he spent five years working for Congress before heeding the call of the wild. He set out truck camping to road trip across the American West, and then across all of Central America and South America. When he isn't on the move, you can find him living as an expat in Colombia. He is also the author of the best selling book: Big Travel, Small Budget that will help you travel more for less. Follow the adventures on social media or read more.

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