Amargosa River Canyon & Date Shake

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Posted by LeRoy on January 25, 2004 at 13:59:42:

For years, I have raved about the date shakes at Furnace Creek Ranch; I now have a vastly better shake to tout. Last week while doing research on the wagon route of the ’49ers blazed through the Amargosa River Canyon (south from Tecopa) I tried a date shake at the China Ranch Date Farm ( These shakes are made with real ice cream and lots of locally grown dates. They are so thick a foot-long length of cement rebar would, I’m sure, remain erect if you were foolish enough to test my assertion. Straws will not work on the shakes, the lush morsel must be spooned from the cup.

From China Ranch there is an excellent hiking trail into the Amargosa River Canyon. If you are looking for a wonderful day-hike, I strongly recommend the jaunt down the spur railroad grade that once serviced China Ranch. Then take the side trip to a slot canyon that puts to shame everything you have seen in Death Valley, and make another side trip the Amargosa River water fall (you do not have to buy a shake to get directions).

If your spouse does not accompany you, I heartily recommend a shake at the beginning and end of the hike. Sadly, my wife was with me last Saturday.

The best way to locate the ranch is to stop at the museum in Shoshone and pick up a brochure. Once you get to Tecopa (not Tecopa Hot Springs) follow the electric power line eastward out of town (“town” is a slight exaggeration) until you come to the sign directing you to the ranch.


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