Beautiful Abandoned Home On A Mountain In Searchlight, Nevada

What I am going to share with you, may be one of the most worthwhile things that I have posted on my blog website.  I want to give a little bit of an explanation before I show the video.

There is a couple, who live in the southwestern U.S. who explore abandoned and forgotten places as a hobby.  They make videos while they explore, and they upload these videos to their YouTube channel called Explore With Us.

In Arizona, Utah, and Nevada, there are mining towns where at one time many people lived, but once the mine shut down, everyone moved away, leaving behind houses, shops, schools, and churches, just as they were.  Also, there are farms, ranches, and homesteads, where the owners just left, never to return, due to such reasons as failing health, old age, inability to make a living, or something else happening to them.

The video at the bottom of this blog post, shows a custom home that was completed by a man named Mr. Kay in 1969.  Mr. Kay was born in a small desert town in Arizona in 1908.  He served in the Navy during WWII.  After the war, he and his wife owned and operated a small motel, in the small mining town of Searchlight, Nevada.

In 1950 Mr. Kay bought 20 acres of land on a 1,000 foot high mountain outside of town for the taxes owed on the land.  In 1959 he began building, and it took him the next ten years to complete his home.

Mr. Kay built the concrete pier, concrete slab, and rock wall foundation for his home.  He bought the material to build the home, as he went along.  Some of the building material, was salvaged from oil well, mining, and other industrial sites.

The interior was finished with wood paneling, antique colored glass hanging lamps, a marble fireplace, avocado green shag carpet, and stereo music speakers in every room.  The home was completed by Mr. Kay in 1969, and there was a newspaper article about Mr. Kay and his house in the Las Vegas newspaper in 1976.

When you watch the video, and you see the incredible views overlooking the completely vacant desert, keep in mind what was happening in 1969.  There was the Cuban Missile Crises, the constant imminent threat of a nuclear war, the Vietnam War, the Kennedy assassinations, the MLK assassination, Civil Rights protests and riots, and the landing on the moon.  The world was in chaos, and a person did not know what would happen next.

Can you imagine what it would feel like to get away from everything in a place like this, with complete peace, tranquility, and the amazing view of the stars at night?

After watching this video, some viewers left comments asking what happened to the owners, where is this located, can people just come there and move in, or how could they go about buying this property?  If you read through the comments, all of these questions are answered by other viewers, sometimes in complete detail.

Yes, a person probably can buy this property, just read through the comments, and there is enough specific information given about the site location, that someone can go through the process of finding the owners, which someone wrote was now a Las Vegas Trust, and they should be able to make an offer to purchase this property outside of Searchlight, Nevada.

Though I believe that there are many people who are capable of purchasing this property, it would take a great deal of money to get the home into livable condition again with the structural, electrical, water, and sewer system repairs.  As soon as someone purchased this property, and no matter what stage of the restoration process the house was in, leaving this place for just a few days might result in someone doing a tremendous amount of vandalism.  Because this property has been vacant for so long, the way vagrants and vandals think, no one has the right to own this place.  Only constantly having three to four large mean Rottweiler dogs on the property would reduce the threat of vandalism.

Here is the link to the newspaper article about Mr. Kay and his house, that was written in 1976.  Once you click on this link and reach the newspaper site, scroll down to the reader panel in order to read the article, use the scroll tab to the right of the reader panel.  I believe that Mr. Kay died in 1979, though some viewers found another person with a similar name who died in 2009, who is not the correct Mr. Kay.

30 thoughts on “Beautiful Abandoned Home On A Mountain In Searchlight, Nevada

    1. Lenord,

      If you read through the comments left by the viewers of this YouTube video, one of the commentors gave these directions:

      Warren Jolliffe
      1 month ago
      Check with any realtor in Searchlight, NV. The house is about 100yds south of Cottonwood Cove Rd, 3.1 miles east of town.

      Not exactly in the middle of nowhere and easily visible from the highway, so there’s no point in being coy about the location. I recognized it instantly from the first shot, and I live in Colorado. I’ve seen it many times as I was headed to Lake Mohave and always wondered about its status and thought it might have an interesting history


  1. The house was sold! New owners ! Restoring house! No trespassing private property! Security cameras and new owners live there!


    1. Kim,

      If this is true, that the house has been sold, this is both good and bad.

      From the way that you wrote your comment, it appears that you may be the new owners, “No trespassing private property!…..”

      You should realize that there were thousands of people from around the world that would have liked to buy this property and work on this house. That there were thousands of people who would have liked to have visited this site one day. A better way to put this would have been, “The house has been sold. The new owners have closed access to the 20 acres of land that the house sits on, so that they can begin restoring the house.”

      If the YouTube Channel “Explore With Us”, had not made their video and shared it with the world, if commentors would not have identified the state, town, and location, if I would not have written my blog post article, if everyone would not have shared information so that other people would know about this and see it, this site probably would not have been sold, because people would not have known about it. But people did share this information, in a non-selfish way, with good intentions.


    2. Kim, I hope your endeavors to restore the home are going well.
      The vision, discipline, labor, and finances are staggering. I personally took on a like project 10 years ago with an abandoned home on 12 acres here in Missouri.
      I’ve never regretted my decision for a moment, but have grow tired many a time and questioned my choice.
      I have a trip planned this next spring to Joshua Tree, CA. and plan to detour through Searchlight just so I can at least see it from the highway.
      I’d love to have an opportunity to meet you guys and see your project in person.
      If there would be a chance I’d feel privileged to see it and meet the new owners.
      Not many of us possess the spirit it takes to commit to such an endeavor.
      Regards, Steve Ward


    1. Sean Fortress,

      Yes, things are so much different than back in 1979, I think that people were much more idealistic and hopeful. This was a very big undertaking that John Kay started in building this house on top of a mountain out in the desert, but he completed it, and everyone who sees it is amazed by it.

      There are also several humbling life lessons in this. One lesson, is about achieving your dreams, doing something that you always wanted to do, achieving it, being able to enjoy your accomplishment. Another lesson is about getting old, and failing health. Another lesson is about leaving everything behind.


      1. So true. Its easy to fall victim to the thinking that human health lasts forever when in fact most people do fail to a point where living alone is not a viable idea unless relatives are nearby.

        My own parents bought a small house near Lake Tahoe, CA, with the idea that they would move there. Well, guess what. The weather was far tougher in winter than either of them could handle AND my father’s mental health went down hill at age 60 and he died at 65.

        THATS why statistically, as measured by various survey’s and the US Government data, most people do NOT move once they hit age 65. Especially to a location distant from where they are used to, in different weather, and in a place where everyone around is a stranger.


    2. In John’s later years he moved to San Bernadino where he passed. Why did he leave the solace of his sanctuary?
      I assume that his sister is your grandmother. I think his fans at the youtube site would love to hear from his family. They are curious why no one claimed the land after his passing. I just thought of something, that maybe his wife Ellen took control of the property and she moved from there after John passed as it might have been too lonely for her without him and returned to a town close to her kids.

      The fans there would get a big kick out of hearing from you and maybe enjoy you sharing an anecdote or two. Be aware that there are a couple of false testimonies posted there so some people might be skeptical of you at first. Answering a few of their questions would dispel any doubt you are legitimate.


      1. Joni,

        I see that your comment was left for Sean Fortress. Yes, that would be interesting and inspiring to see family photographs of the home when it was being enjoyed, loved, and lived in.

        I was an elementary school age child during the 1970s, this time and the early 1980s was the best and happiest time of my life. I don’t think that it was just my young age, I think that the U.S. was better back then. Even though I described the turmoil of the Kennedy and MLK assassinations, and the Vietnam War, I think that people’s decency, optimism, hope, imagination, enjoyment and love of life was much greater then than now. Families seemed closer, tighter, and spent more time together, everything seemed simpler.

        This house in Searchlight kind of symbolizes everything that was lost. I try to think about and imagine the sense of peace, contentment, security, satisfaction, happiness, wonder, and joy that Mr. Kay, his wife, his family, and friends must have felt being together on top of that mountain overlooking the desert on clear starry nights where you could see for many miles in every direction, thousands of bright stars, meteors.


    1. John,

      I do not know what the parcel number is. If you read through some of the comments that have been left and exchanged, that is the most information that I personally have about the specific location.


  2. Truely the home Mr.Kay and his wife built is amazing. It breaks my heart to see it in the video knowing that the stupidity of a few has lead to such disrepair.
    I ended up on this page because I myself was interested in trying to buy it and preserve it’s majestic design and construction.
    Truely a labor of love in every detail.
    I’m very happy yet sad that it has been purchased.
    It deserves restoration and a return to the happiness in which it was constructed.
    I hope some day to see in it former glory.
    Best of luck to the new owners.


    1. Steve Ward,

      In many towns, on some of the most picturesque locations, someone decided to build their dream home. They might have barely gotten started, worked on it for years, or they may have completed it. But everyone gets old, and leaves behind what they built. If you continue to watch the YouTube Channel “Explore With Us”, you will see mining camps, mining towns, tourist destinations, resorts, residential communities, haciendas, company housing, government facilities, and military facilities that have been abandoned.

      There are towns and houses, that seem too good to have just been left abandoned, such as the “Saltan Sea” area shown in a recent “Explore With Us” video. But you have to be careful about your desire to re-build, preserve, or maintain a property in these areas, because it seems like they become the domain of drug addicts, sociopaths, gangs, and criminals, where you couldn’t even leave an extension cord, a chair, or a book sitting out overnight unattended without it being destroyed by vandals.


      1. Very true. The Salton Sea & region, CA, has an interesting history. Real Estate Developers bought the dirt and installed a clubhouse / pool to use as a lure to buyers. Big name Hollywood talent of the time was hired to do shows there. They surveyed lots, installed fire hydrants, and pavement. AND THAT was mostly all that was done. Thousands of people bought lots and the entire area began to fade into history. IF you look from Google Earth, you can see the street grids… covered with sand and dirt… and an occasional house. Certain areas were abandoned altogether and became hang outs for druggies and worse. No grocery stores. No movie theaters. No restaurants. Just hot sun in summer and a smelly, foul water body nearby that is so salty you can’t run a motor in it as the salt will wreck the motor. There was a fascinating video on the place once about ten years ago but I can’t recall the name. It showed how weird and desperate it became. One Realtor actually had bought 3 homes.. one for himself and two as investment next door… and there he was…. alone… trying to convince anyone who would listen that buying the house for around $200,000 was a steal. Yeah. And he even pointed out it was “water front property.” lol In today’s world, he probably just walked away from his house. Nobody wants to live there. Its a ghost town with few houses.


  3. I just wanted to let you know that the a man and his daughter did the video. They do a lot of exploring great post! I hope the new owners can get the property to its former glory. Mr. Kay must have been one determined man to build it like he did. He built an amazing home in a beautiful place. May he rest in peace. I hope the owners don’t throw away the headstone that is there.


  4. Awesome place. I imagine the night sky must be so beautiful with all the stars.
    I’m living in Vietnam 🇻🇳 now and haven’t been back to the USA 🇺🇸 in many years and I do miss the desert 🏜.


    1. Mr. Cozy,
      If you have been living in Vietnam for many years you are lucky. From what I have read, due to the growth in the popularity of Thailand combined with the growing intensity of Thai government scrutiny, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam are all becoming more expensive, more ruined by tourists, and more difficult for foreigners who sought a simple, peaceful, inexpensive life.

      I have driven through, seen, visited, and lived in some of the sparsely populated areas of the western U.S. where people have always gone for peace, quiet, the unspoiled beauty of nature, and a minimalist simple life. Now, as seen on videos by the YouTube Channel “Explore With Us”, every remote place in the West is a lure for Meth addicts who try to steal or destroy everything left unguarded even for a few hours.


  5. I live in search light and yes it truly is a crime what happens. but something’s do need to be recovered according to mother nature’s laws. maybe even the meth people you speak of serve some purpose in the grand scheme of nature. someday she will win and have her earth back the way she had it before we so screwed it up. the Indians seem to be the only smart people that respected her.


  6. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you relied on the video to make your point. You clearly know what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your site when you could be giving us something informative to read?


  7. …I wanted to purchase this home and land back in 2018. I searched and searched, and came up with near nothing as far as Title search and property ownership. I called many realtors locally and up in Las Vegas, they knew nothing about it. The only thing I did discover, was….The Property is on BLM land and it is a Miming Claim filed in 1907. I would bet the Mine Entrance is In the Garage Workshop!! MJ


    1. In reply to Marlin P Jack,

      If you read through the comments to this blog post article, there was a commentor that wanted to let it be known that “they” had purchased the John Kay property and that “they” did not want anyone coming to this property anymore. “They” could have been lying, but another commentor may have verified this, however this commentor could have been lying too.

      I didn’t know it at the time, but the county tax assessor’s office in every county of every state has very complete and up-to-date maps and records on properties within that county for the sake of having documentation on exactly how much property taxes are owed currently, nothing seems to escape their attention. In a matter of minutes they can bring up the latest satellite photos of the property, property I.D. numbers, legal description, legal assigned physical address, current and past owners, sale history including price of sale and dates.

      The fact that Real Estate agents could/would not help you does not surprise me, in fact I bet once you described this property the very first thing that each of them did when you got off the phone or left their office, was frantically try to locate this property so that they could do a deal to benefit themselves, or try to buy it for themself.

      It was a little upsetting to me that all of the viewers of this video would have liked to have visited this house, stayed in it, or purchased this property, but the first person to get their hands on it wants to run everyone else off, spoiling everyone else’s chance of enjoying it. I am very reluctant to share in my recent travel/adventure blog post articles where exactly I am, because I am scared that someone will try to buy the entire forest, mountain, or lake.


  8. Just checked it out on Google Earth. Haven’t looked at it for quite a while. It’s got a new roof and there’s a car in the driveway.


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