One of my readers tipped me off to the Randsburg General Store which sells soda with phosphates just like they used to in the old days. It just so happened that I was heading up the 395 only a couple days later, so I figured a little side trip to check it out would be a great idea.
This old mining town is definitely an overload for your photographic senses, I can’t wait to go back and just roam around taking pictures. There is so much old mining remnants and history that I wanted to photograph and the main strip of the town is literally 5 minutes off the 395, it is interesting to see how towns do when the highway goes around them.
We headed right to the general store in the small Main Street and went in for a soda with phosphates. Here is a little history on the process.
At the end of the 1800’s gold was discovered at the Rand Mine outside of town. Soon after a mining town was created with people looking to strike it rich. The town itself started to form in 1897. After the gold dried up some people stayed and some left, with the town today being little more then a fraction of what it used to be. During the summer it still pulls in a lot of visitors with people driving through on Highway 395.
I ended up choosing lime as that seemed pretty unique and my dad got sarsaparilla. Both of the sodas were good, I really ended up liking the lime one with its citrus acid base.
The store itself was also very old and homey feeling and they had a small propane tank which I needed so that was a hit.
We wanted to check out the antique shop named Cowboy Bobs down the road and asked the owner of the general store who also ended up owning Cowboy Bobs and she went and let us in.
$20 dollars later and I was the proud owner of a lot of fun antiques from this store. While we were there we found out this store is also a small hotel with a couple rooms, who knew.
As you are driving out of the town and back to the 395 you will see their small jail.
This is exactly the type of thing that makes towns like these endearing. They are fully content to be the old mining and cowboy town and love the history and stuff that comes with it. They are just trying to keep the dream alive and I love that.
I can’t wait to come back and spend a half day taking photos of the old mining stuff. If you are driving the 395 this place is only 5 minutes out of the way and it is worth the stop. Make sure to leave me a comment below.