Bodie State Historical Park


Bodie State Historical Park is a great historical site that shows you what it was like in the 1880’s. If you happen to be traveling on Route 395 this is a great side adventure. It’s one of the best-preserved old mining towns I have seen. You will enjoy learning about its rich past. 


If you love history and wouldn’t mind driving out into the middle of the desert, then a visit to Bodie State Historic Park will not disappoint. Bodie is an old gold-mining ghost town where you can walk the old streets and see many original buildings. The park service has a 30-minute video that gives a good overview of the history of Bodie. 


The town is named for Waterman S. Body (William Bodey), who had discovered small amounts of gold in hills north of Mono Lake. In 1875, a mine cave-in revealed pay dirt, which led to the purchase of the mine by the Standard Company in 1877. People flocked to Bodie and transformed it from a town of a few dozen to a boomtown. At the height of the town,  it had a population of nearly 10,000 people.

Only a small part of the town survives, preserved in a state of “arrested decay.” Interiors remain as they were left and stocked with goods. Designated as a National Historic Site and a State Historic Park in 1962, the remains of Bodie are being preserved in a state of “arrested decay”. 

It’s a privilege to have Bodie State Historical State Park for our enjoyment, so please practice Leave No Trace principles.


The park is northeast of Yosemite, 13 miles east of Highway 395 on Bodie Road, and seven miles south of Bridgeport.

From U.S. 395 seven miles south of Bridgeport, take State Route 270. Go east 10 miles to the end of the pavement and continue 3 miles on an unsurfaced road to Bodie. The last 3 miles can at times be rough. Reduced speeds are necessary. Call the park if there are any questions about road conditions.

References and Links:

Hot Springs

Mammoth Hot Springs

Mammoth Hot Springs is an excellent adventure for any van or RV nomad looking for a relaxing soak. There are six man-made hot tubs that you are allowed to use. Each one is in a different location but located within 10 minutes of each other. There is also the Hot Creek Geological Site located within the vicinity of the hot springs. This geological site is home to a beautiful hot spring, but unfortunately, you can’t swim in it.

Read More »

Alabama Hills

The Alabama Hills represent one of the most premier locations for van and RV nomads. The hills attract thousands of nomads every year to camp among the beautiful rock formations. The hills are located at the base of Mt. Whitney and are operated by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). You are allowed to boondock here for up to 14 days.

Read More »
Scroll to Top