Part 1
archived 10-08-99
Archive file# e100899a
donated by James Vandale and Jon Hurst

I am submitting to all Dragonslayers a multipart true life adventure as told to me by one of our members as he experienced it 24 years ago. Some of you know him for who he is; a retired, at the age of 22, highly decorated Vietnam war veteran who was Special Forces trained and who served three tours fighting communists, rescuing POW's and working special missions for Air America. It cost him his right leg, yet he was still well equipped to meet this next period of his life. Keep in mind that the Soldier had no knowledge of Dracs at the time. When we met, and he began his new education to what is going on around him, and I could see curious recognition from time to time coupled with a deep fear that he quickly hid. It was three months later that he told me of his 18 month ordeal in the Superstition Mountains in May of 1975 . The story came grudgingly at first; obviously with much mental pain, and with occasional reluctance and reservation. But because of what he knows now, taught by myself and others on DS, he knew he couldn't keep hidden what he now recognized as a Draco base camp. He desires to use for the present a fictitious name for his boss.... we will call "Phil Allen".

Here is the beginning of his story.... of his life for two years among the Dracos and Pteradons with their little ( 5 foot) Pets!!

In May of that year, I was asked to join a group of men who were bringing gold out of the Superstitions. The leader, Phil Allen, spent 20 years of his life researching Mexican archives, Spanish landgrants and Mexican Government documents. He discovered what he believed to be routes to 9 of the 12 Peralta family mines. Phil enlisted the aid of several others and together they found all 9. Using pack mules and horses, they moved in electric generators, hand held drills, food and supplies and set up a base camp 15 miles in. Others would keep this camp supplied and alternating teams of men would keep the mining camp supplied....well supplied…especially with ice, lots of ice as they liked to drink cold beverages, the one pleasure of the long hot day.

Since the last of the mines, No.'s 7, 8, & 9 were the most productive, they started there, core mining much in the ways the old timers had 150 yrs prior. The operation was covert. It was illegal for civilians to own bulk gold in those days. It was processed and flown out of the country. At 18 to 25 ounces per ton, it was a lucrative business at best. The mining camp was very small. It was at the top of a small arroyo or 'holler' and measured about 60' square.. flaked on two walls by cliffs going up...on one by a sheer 90' drop-off and open on the arroyo side which looked downhill of the 1/4 mile long arroyo. The mines were in the sides of the arroyo walls... so was the Draco entrance to their lair. Two-thirds of the way down from the mini-camp was a small stand of pinion pine trees..about 400 yards away and downhill.

Phil Allen knew. He had known of their existence for over 20 years. He had read of them in the old archives. He knew what they were ...but not why- they were. Phil had spent his life in these mountains running down leads to the gold he was searching for. He saw them from time to time, following him, pacing his movements. Terrified at first, he soon came to the conclusion that if he simply ignored them nothing would happen…and nothing ever did.

It was different at the little camp, for in the arroyo walls was a fourth entrance, hidden behind brush as were all of the others. At first the group would set up a night guard for themselves. But it soon became evident that they could not continue mining by day and guarding by night. It was decided that they would hire a full time night guard. They lost five men in the first three months. One simply ran-never to be heard of again. Two returned via the base camp, not even stopping for water or supplies, they rode their horses clear out to U.S. 60 and on home! Two were found shredded, some parts missing but obviously quite dead. They were found down toward the end of the arroyo near a small stand of pinion pine trees, about two hundred yards from the camp. This was where the Dracs congregated and fed at night. This was were the Soldier's year and a half nightmare began.


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