Starr Ranch | Southern Henry Mountains

Roadside Attraction Starr Ranch - Southern Henry Mountains Roadside Attraction Starr Ranch

Southern Henry Mountains

Overview

RATING: Roadside Attraction
MAPS: COPPER CREEK BENCHES, UT

Fri

Sunny, with a high near 72. East wind 6 to 13 mph.

72 | 48

Sat

A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 68. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

68 | 52

Sun

Sunny, with a high near 72.

72 | 50

Mon

Sunny, with a high near 75.

75 | 53

Tue

Sunny, with a high near 80.

80 | 56

View Full Weather Details
SEASON: Spring, Summer, Fall
WATER: None, bring all you need.

Fri

Sunny, with a high near 72. East wind 6 to 13 mph.

72 | 48

Sat

A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 68. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

68 | 52

Sun

Sunny, with a high near 72.

72 | 50

Mon

Sunny, with a high near 75.

75 | 53

Tue

Sunny, with a high near 80.

80 | 56

View Full Weather Details
The Starr Ranch and Little Rockies visible in the distance.

The Starr Ranch and Little Rockies visible in the distance.

Broken dreams and half finished buildings, Starr Ranch is an interesting place to visit. Al Starr, seeking a spot to base his mining and horse operations out of, chose this site in the 1880s. Al was a bit ahead of the mining boom in the area, as other mines, including the uranium mines around Farmers Knob to the north and Del Monte to the south, didn't start until about a decade later. He hired a stonemason to build a house and cellar at the ranch, near the current day Starr Spring Campground. The mason did exceptional work, at least to my eye, but the buildings were never finished. Locoweed killed most of Al's horses, and his mine on Mt. Hillers never produced commercial ore.

The project was abandoned and left to the ravages of time. Today, there are a few walls standing, albeit they look like a stiff breeze could knock some of them down. There is also a fascinating root cellar. The BLM has fenced off the site due to wall collapse risk, but even from the fence, it is an interesting view.

Note: Starr Springs Campground, just up the road from the old ranch, is an excellent campground. It is a first-come-first-served 12 site campground with a group site. There is no water available at the campground, so bring plenty, but the bathrooms and campsites are well maintained. This is a great place to camp in summer to get a little respite from the heat in lower elevations.
The unfinished Starr Ranch

The unfinished Starr Ranch

Getting There

From Hanksville, head south on UT-95 for about 27 miles to the junction of UT-95 and UT-276. Go right on UT-276 toward Bullfrog/Ticaboo for 17.1 miles to a signed dirt road on the right that heads up into the Henry Mountains. The road is signed for Starr Spring.

Follow the good dirt road for 3.3 miles to a major junction. Go right here, reaching the old Starr Ranch in less than 1/4 of a mile. The ranch house is on the left. The Starr Springs Campground is about 1/2 a mile beyond.

The ranch and Little Rockies. Mount Holmes is on the left,  Mount Ellsworth is on the right.

The ranch and Little Rockies. Mount Holmes is on the left, Mount Ellsworth is on the right.

Route

From the road, the old ranch house is easily visible, and a short trail goes to the fence. To the west is Mt Hillers. The two peaks to the east are the Little Rockies, Mt Holmes on the north side, Mt Ellsworth on the south. Parts of the Bears Ears/Cedar Mesa are visible far off in the distance to the east. Al picked a spot for his ranch house with some nice views!


Maps

Printable Maps:
Jct - 3.3 miles from UT-276

12S 529906mE 4188713mN

N37° 50' 43" W110° 39' 36"

Starr Ranch

12S 529928mE 4188872mN

N37° 50' 49" W110° 39' 35"

Starr Springs Campground

12S 529688mE 4189207mN

N37° 50' 59" W110° 39' 45"

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