Had there been such a thing in the 1800’s a couple of extremely lucky prospectors would have shared a triumphant high-five having struck a rich vein of gold quartz at the bottom of a creek in Bronco canyon. The area being only four miles east of a flourishing stage stop called Bumblebee (I should tell you that the town was named that for observations by early travelers that Apaches were “thick as bumblebees”…), they may have had good reason to want to keep the discovery to themselves.
Legend has it that the two prospectors mined over two hundred pounds of gold from the creek and buried most of it somewhere near the mine site; planning to take only some of it with them when they went home for the winter.
However as chilly winds began to blow, (Yes, it does cool off in parts of Arizona!) a marauding band of Apaches happened by the two-man camp and attacked the unsuspecting prospectors; killing one while the other managed to escape and vowed to return one day when the Apaches were subdued. But alas, he was up in years and ailing by the time that ever happened and ended up telling his story of buried gold from his deathbed.
Though a good many fortune-seekers have indeed searched the area, all that was ever found were the remains of a crude circular mill used in the mining process. But somehow the story remains. Perhaps due in part, to the perseverance of nearby Bumblebee; dubbed “The town that just never made it”. (I believe the current residents would beg to differ!)
No longer a stage stop, Bumblebee is all but entirely privately owned these days, including a 180 acre Guest Ranch with more than a few attractions and an old schoolhouse which is the only original building that remains in the town.
Treasure or not, it truly is one of those places that exudes the quiet countenance of nature with a hint of spiritual connectivity. It brings to mind a quote by Shakespeare: “One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.”
Does nature ever make you feel that you’re only a wisp away from a different place in time?