Around the corner from the raft launch area at the mouth of the Paria Canyon is the Lonely Dell Ranch. This is the orchard that was planted by the last private owners in 1965, and is still maintained today.
Turning around, and you see the homestead that was built in 1935, when the location was operated as a dude ranch.
An original guest house from 1925, built by Jerry Johnson, son of Warren and Samantha Johnson who took over the ferry in 1881. It was part of a polygamist commune that he tried to start at the ranch.
In the 1940s, the farm was more intensively cultivated with more irrigation water. Here are the remains of a John Deere planter and a straight truck. I could not find any markings to determine the manufacturer. Just a few more yards down the trail from here is a cemetery. There is a head stone with the names of four children of Warren and Permelia Johnson who died of diphtheria over a seven week period in 1891.
The farm ground to the left and a view of the main dwelling area toward the mouth of the canyon.
This is a view in the opposite direction. Not like any Iowa farm ground I’ve seen before!
A lonely hiker trying to figure it out…heading up canyon.
The Paria River upstream of the ranch, maybe two feet deep at most.
A closer view of the main ranch area. Amazing what a little water can do. It was about 5 degrees cooler amongst the trees.