Porters Rockwell’s Ranch for many is a popular spot to take a break and take some pictures after hours of riding the sandy trails near the Little Sahara Recreation Area. Porter Rockwell’s Ranch is located west of the Little Sahara Sand Dunes in an area known as Cherry Creek. The ranch is Private Property but the surrounding area is state and BLM land including the Rockwell Wilderness Study Area directly to the East. Evidence of an old way of life is still present on the ranch. Rotted wood that was once a fence or part of a structure litter much of the property. Still standing is an old house, balanced on three of the four corners of the foundation. The house is severely deteriorated and unsafe but most of us can’t help ourselves to a self-guided tour through the home.
Although many people that visit the house refer to it as Porters Cabin, his actual cabin was moved to Eureka many years ago. Porter’s cabin has been restored and is on display right off Highway 6 in the middle of town. Rockwell died in late 1870’s and it’s unknown if Porter actually stayed in the cabin. It’s believed that he had it build as a retreat or an escape. The old house on the ranch was built in the early 1900’s; twenty or so years after Rockwell died.
The one hundred year old neglected structure is about to collapse into itself. Mother Nature has taken its toll. It must have been a difficult yet interesting life on the ranch. The creek has since been diverted and anything once living is now decomposing and covered with tumbleweed. The ranch itself probably has volumes of history yet very little is known.