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folks are dying to come here
folks are dying to come here

Gammons Gulch movie set and museum

Several years ago, while traveling through Arizona, we took a trip to the Gammons Gulch movie set and museum, which is located about an hour east of Tucson.

It’s in the middle of nowhere, which makes it a good location for Old West movies. Gammons Gulch is about 13 miles north of Benson out along what used to be a stagecoach route.

Our host was Jay Gammons, owner, curator, construction foreman and tour guide. He and his wife have been building this place for years and collecting items for much longer than that.

Gammons’ Gulch is billed as an authentic and haunting ghost town. It has been used as a set for several movies and music videos. Visiting the site is like taking a step back in time to the 1800s.

Gammons Gultch Movie set and Museum

Here we are in front of the first building. Jay is the fellow with the hat. Inside is this gorgeous bar imported from England in the 18 somethings.

Gammon 2

Below is a fully operational blacksmith shop used occasionally on weekends.

Gammon 3
Gammons Gulch evenĀ  features an Old West jail — big enough to hold a couple of jail birds.

Gammon 4

This saloon is the newest building in the town and was built specifically for a movie set. We spent several hours in there drinking sarsaparilla and listening to Jay tell about his history in movies as an extra, including some John Wayne movies when he was an 11-year-old boy.

Inside the saloon built for a movie set
Inside the saloon built for a movie set

What Old West town didn’t have a general store filled with turn of the century things?

Kathy looks over the wares in the general store
Kathy Huggins looks over the wares in the general store

Back then, many businesses offered multiple services. Apparently, at Gammons Gulch, the undertaker was also the furniture maker.

The undertaker was also the furniture maker
The undertaker was also the furniture maker

There is little crime in Gammons Gulch, and the prominently displayed gallows is evidence as to why that may be the case. This church has been the scene of several weddings and, when movie producers need a school house, the cross is simply removed.

Gulch church

Visiting Gammons Gulch was quite a fun day trip. Generally, the facility is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. September through May. Because filming may be underway, it’s not open to the public every day, so it’s best to call ahead to ensure that a tour is scheduled. The number is 520.212.2831.

From June through August, the site is open by reservation only.

The price for admission is $7 per person, but the site does not accept credit cards.

There is a picnic area available on site should families want to spend the day. Avoid open-toed footwear and bring plenty of bottled water and sunscreen.

To watch a video of the site from the air, click here.

For more information, visit www.gammonsgulch.com

About John Huggins

John Huggins is a retired Navy Electronics Technician Chief. He traded the Navy adventure for a job in manufacturing quality assurance in 1986, and traded that job for the RV adventure in early 2005. He and his wife, Kathy, have traveled the nation chronicling their adventures at Living the RV Dream. They have authored several books and also produce a weekly podcast about the RV lifestyle.

One comment

  1. 2LaneAdventures

    We will be in that area this summer, before we start our caravan … will have to check it out! I have started a list of places to see! Thanks!

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