Showing posts with label Ballarat. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ballarat. Show all posts

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Onto Mrs. Barker... of the famous Barker's Ranch!
A friend (who would like to remain anonymous) sent these photos, and wrote the following kick-ass story for us:

She (Mrs. Barker) leased land in Death Valley (Panamint Valley) called "Indian Ranch"...just North of Ballarat...it was like a trailer park setting but kind of an Oasis type thing...they had a bar, and might have sold food...and she loved to play poker...so the people that rented space on Indian Ranch would play poker with her inside her trailer, they said it was a lot of friendly fun.

After her lease was up, Indian Ranch went back to the family that owned it (an Indian family) and I believe she passed away....but her trailer was towed to Ballarat where it sits today, and the two caretakers, George and Rocky Novak still live in it. George Novak is sitting next to Mrs. Barker to her left...this was taken in the early 70s.
Her original trailer (where Charlie visited her at Indian Ranch) burned to the ground . I always wondered if the Beach Boys Gold Record was lost in the fire, so I asked Rocky and George, but they didn't know. Her primary home was in the Los Angeles area, its been said she flew from Burbank to the small dirt landing field at Indian Ranch in her own small plane.
Bugliosi called her "Arlene Barker" in the book, but friends called her "Kirk Barker" - yes, Kirk!

I (Lynyrd) then asked: "So, Evidently, she sold "Barker Ranch", and leased "Indian Ranch" in Death Valley afterwards? Or, did she still own Barker's Ranch, and lease Indian Ranch at the same time"? "At what location were George and Rocky caretakers"?

I don't think she ever sold Barker Ranch - I think the Feds took it over and made it part of the "Death Valley National Monument" - I do know for sure though that the Myers fought and WON the Feds to keep Myers privately owned, and they still own it today. They say the Meyer Brothers are mean bastards...(Cappy's brothers I guess) they have shotguns...LOL
Rocky and George Novak are the caretakers (currently) at Ballarat. Ballarat is the ghost town (semi) in Death Valley, the last place of civilization before you turn right (the 17 miles) dirt road to get to Barker Ranch - actually called Wingate Rd...before you get to Goler Wash..
Trivia - in 1968 - Easy Rider filmed a segment there - where Peter Fonda takes his watch off and throws it in the dirt!!  Oh BTW, she lived in Burbank, Ca.
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The second picture (below) is what the cafe at Ballarat looked like in 1969 when the girls (Simi Valley Sherry and Barb Hoyt) ran away from Charlie and they were eating breakfast and Charlie gave them $20.00 to get home.