mine1jpegA gold mine to be precise………..

The Rodalquilar gold mine in the Cabo de Gata national park in Almeria in Spain to be even more of a nitpicker….

As you can see, it’s no longer the site of any ‘rush’ or even a slow amble, but, soon after its genesis in 1925 it was one of the biggest gold mines in Europe.

Now the mine and most of the town below it lies in ruins.


The mine itself is open to the elements, and, given the inclination, you can wander around, risking life and limb on the open, crumbling stairways in the search for a stray nugget. Mrs Shpics, desperate for a new set of ear-rings, did exactly that but came away unadorned and bitterly disappointed…..Had she asked, I could have explained that she would have needed tanks of mercury and/or cyanide, a large scale chemistry set, breathing apparatus and all manner of other paraphernalia, as the mine only ever functioned by using complicated and dangerous chemical extraction processes and that nuggets were pretty much out of the question, but she didn’t …….AND…… when the eyes of Mrs Shpics glaze over with Gold-Lust it would be a brave man that would stand in her way.


The observant among you will have noticed that lettering on the buldings doesn’t quite fit in with the mine scenario…GUARD & DORM  not being words you might expect.

Well thereby hangs a tale.

Any of you lady readers still harbouring a  crush for Jason Patric?  I bet a few of you are and that if so, you’d remember the film ‘SOLARBABIES’………(honestly, you couldn’t make this stuff up …Solarbabies for chrissake! Who in all thats holy could ever have green-lighted a film called solarbabies?)..

Well anyway, diligent research told me that the mine was used as a location for this no doubt wondrous 1986 celluloid adventure..

For your delight and delectation I include a synopsis here:

In a future in which most water has disappeared from the Earth, we find a group of children, mostly teenagers, who are living at an orphanage, run by the despotic rulers of the new Earth. The group in question plays a hockey based game on roller skates and is quite good. It has given them a unity that transcends the attempts to bring them to heel by the government. Finding an orb of special power, they find it has unusual effects on them. They escape from the orphanage (on skates) and try to cross the wasteland looking for a place they can live free as the stormtroopers search for them and the orb. Written by John Vogel <jlvogel@comcast.net>

They escape…ON SKATES!……Have you seen those stairs?

Further research threw up an image of Jason Patric with his shirt off snogging Jamie Gertz in a steamy swimming pooly chemical vatty kinda thingy……Eeeurgh! The things you can find on the internet, I nearly lost my breakfast!

mine5jpegBUT perversely, you can pretty much guarantee that the first thing I’ll do when I’m in a download friendly situation is buy myself a copy of ‘Solarbabies’…..Sci-fi and skating! Got to be worth a look, and I can always fast forward through Jasons oiled torso…..(I think that came out wrong!)

But anyway, I digress….

I’m including  a link with lots of info about the mines, (including other film projects) and some great photos of the mine when in operation so have a click if you’re interested.



As always it would make me a very happy bunny if you gave these shots a click as well, as they really do look far better in a nice, new window.

mine6jpegAnd…just to close today…A very big thankyou and hello to the new followers who have picked up on this blog while I’ve been posting images from Spain…It’s really kind of you to have looked in at my photos and I do hope you’ll visit again.

All Images Copyright Stuart Allan Hyde.

    1. Stuart Hyde - shpics

      Already having a good idea but turning to the dictionary for confirmation I find….
      Silly; stupid; not significant.
      vacuous – empty – senseless – blank – foolish – vacant
      Well really!……………..
      Here was me thinking I was a master of the wry anecdote & the amusing finely-honed quip somewhat in the vein of a latter-day (but significantly more macho) Oscar Wilde….
      But No! Nothing of the sort, it seems I’m nowt but a vacuous and senseless fool!
      Still worship is worship I suppose…..(Even from someone pulling a four berth with end bathroom).


    1. Stuart Hyde - shpics

      The rebar suggested old bones to me…which I rather liked…But I agree about the graffiti here, which was most definitely not the artistic kind….I toyed with photoshopping it out, but ultimately ‘kept it real’….
      Some very different graffiti to come in the next few days..


    1. Stuart Hyde - shpics

      I’m sure it will be snug and toasty…When its cold outside caves stay really nice and warm…..
      (and even if there is a slight whiff of onion it will be lost within the ever-present cloud of French halitosis).
      Have a lovely time and take some piccies!


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