Arizona: A trip to the Desert Bar

The Desert Bar is a seasonal (October to April) bar that is only open on Saturdays and Sundays. It is a “destination” to visit while you’re on the western side of Arizona. But don’t forget to bring cash – this bar does not accept debit or credit cards, only cash.

Though the drive to the bar is only 5 miles down Cienega Springs Rd (a lot of GPS devices still show this as Nellie E Mine Rd) from Arizona 95, those 5 miles can take quite a while. The road is definitely an unimproved road with plenty of jouncing and bumps. I’d recommend taking a high clearance 4×4 vehicle, though we saw some sedans and sporty cars on the road.

The Desert Bar

When you drive into the parking lot for the bar, the church is the most visible building. No services are held at the church, but they do have weddings there.


Bob checking out the interior.

And the on the inside of the church, the floor has a cool design.

The bar itself

Looking down at the lower part of the bar.
The bridge to the bar.
Looking at the classic car, with a view of the solar roof and the exit to the bridge.

Unfortunately, after we left the bar to do take some photos, there was a medical issue. We could hear the call for a doctor, and they cleared the parking lot so a LifeFlight helicopter could land. The helicopter never got a chance to land, though, because the person died and was transported via ambulance to the morgue.

That meant we couldn’t leave the parking lot either, until the emergency vehicles were gone.

While I focused on the rusty classic car, you can see the packed parking lot from all the people moved out of the other section for the helicopter. No one went anywhere for about an hour.

The conclusion

It was worth seeing at least once. The food is bar food – it’s the experience and the drive in that brings folks to this bar.

Here’s an action cam of the road when leaving the bar.

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