Pontiac GTO Graveyard in California

Pontiac GTO Graveyard

We get a lot of leads about supposedly incredible finds from around the globe. Most turn out to just be old rumors that have been passed around the internet for years, but every once in while we get one that looks credible. Well today we got a lead on what may be one of the largest collections of rusty Pontiac GTOs I’ve ever seen. The incredible part is that what you see in the photo above is only a small portion of the collection. Reader Donald W was tipped off to this muscle car graveyard by a friend, so he went hunting for it and was able to track it down for us. He was only able to grab a couple photos of the Pontiac section, as he didn’t want to trespass, so he wasn’t able to get any photos of the rest of the graveyard. A special thanks goes to Donald for sharing his discovery with us!

The GTO Graveyard

When he found the property, he mustered the courage to knock on the owner’s door. He wasn’t received very warmly though, so he decided it was best not to try his luck. Donald felt comfortable taking these photos since the cars you see above are off the owner’s main property along a fire road. I count close to 20 cars in this field and they are all in sad states. According to Donald, these cars only make up about a third of the collection, with everything from Mopars to Fords. From what little information he was able to get out of the owner, they claim to be in the process of restoring some and are using most of them as parts cars. It sounds like the owner doesn’t want to be bothered and I would hate to have more people go bother him, so I won’t give out the specific location. It’s truly heart wrenching to see so many classic cars left to rust away, so hopefully someday the owner will decide to let a few of their cars go to new homes. With any luck he really is restoring these cars and he just doesn’t want to risk letting go of any necessary parts. I have a feeling this is more a case of hoarding though, but I could be wrong. So do you think the owner really is restoring these cars or is he just stocking up on muscle cars?

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Comments

  1. e7561x

    Use Google Earth and you should be able to see the massive scale of the number of cars.

    • Peterporsche

      How would you start a Google Earth search without coordinates?
      Any help or leads to see from space would be appreciated.
      Peter

      Like 1
  2. Koolpenguin

    Looks like this find was discussed last year on the GTO forum website:

    http://www.gtoforum.com/f12/gto-graveyard-found-55074/

    • Will

      The forum you linked to has the exact same pics from over a year ago ” He was only able to grab a couple photos of the Pontiac section, as he didn’t want to trespass, so he wasn’t able to get any photos of the rest of the graveyard.” Because he never went there. He found the pics on a forum. Or her took them a long time ago.

    • jimmy

      it says on the forum that the owner will restore them all one day and wont sell code for they will sit there and rust

  3. Chris in WNC

    “restoring” them.
    and there they will continue to rot until the owner dies or has a change of heart……..

    Like 1
  4. Ian @ Jewel or Jalopy

    Most of those look like parts cars at this point unfortunately. But maybe values will hit the point someday that someone could justify restoring a few of the better ones.

    Does that look like a Eucalyptis tree near the front? Northern California?

  5. Wiley Robinson

    Those are Eucalyptis trees and the grow all over in SoCal too. That’s what it looks like to me. Cool photos though, it looks like something out of Mad Max.

  6. jimmy

    there was a boat place in north east georgia that got foreclosed on it wasnt the entire lot that was foreclosed on but the rest of the property has old muscle cars and lots of trans ams bandit body style theres atleast 10-15. inside there where about 10 455 pontiac engines and i think a few 400 pontiac engines that where inside the building they where sold to our machinist that we use but then the scrap guy took all the engines that he was told not to take. but the cars are still there.

    • Cattoo

      Crappy, greedy scrap guy stole all those 455 & 400 motors and no one pressed charges against the thief? That’s a double loss and the loss of not getting that guy locked up for stealing possibly rare Pontiac motors is that he probably has and will continue to do that very thing for a few bucks in quick cash.

  7. William Armstrong

    Yes I agree it’s a damn shame that someone is hoarding cars like this, and letting them rot away so no one else could enjoy them.Shame on them.

    Like 1
    • Horse Radish

      see below !

      Shame on WHO ????

  8. DT

    Just makes the prices go up,its a good thing if you already own yours!!

  9. jimmy

    i know another place that has lots of cars more than 20 of them a totaled 911 a smashed 4 door bel air the good stuff is 1 or 2 tr3s 2 jeep trucks from the 50s the rare ones with the flat front model Ts and As and old willys jeeps late 70s alfa romeo and several neat and rare cars the owner says hes “going to fix them one day” which means im not going to do anythig with it.

    Like 1
  10. Vince Habel

    He will be lucky if he restores one.

    Like 1
  11. jim s

    i see a lot of open/missing windows which can’t help the bodies survive outside. be nice if they were put up for sale soon. very nice find

  12. dave

    Where n cali

  13. Horse Radish

    Same story, different photos.

    By that I mean, guy (or his father) collected these cars for years/decades when nobody wanted them or were chasing other dreams.
    Needless to say if you spend your money on old cars you’re not spending it on yourself or otherwise, so I do see it as a sacrifice.

    Now forward 20 or 30 years.
    A big boom in (old/muscle) cars comes around and many newcomers are discovering what this guy knew and acted upon long time ago.
    Pay the man what he wants or shut up and go elsewhere, if there is elsewhere to go !

    I am tired of people whining , “hoarder” , “won’t sell” or “they’ll rust away….”..
    It takes two to tango.
    Buyer and seller have to come to a FAIR agreement, not fair only for the whimpering cheap buyer……..
    If you’re not willing to “pony “-up, then who thinks you ‘ll do better than him…..

    Keep posting these finds.
    End of rant.
    Anybody not seeing the other side does not deserve a shot at these.

    • Rustowner

      Horse, you said it perfectly. Agreed, sick of people whining about “hoarders” and not stepping up to the plate. I’m totally sick of this. I think lots of people fail to realize that these cars, however they were obtained, would have ended up in the scrap yard and recycled. Bitching about someone who had the foresight to “save” them is a joke, regardless of what they are doing with them. It is a free country after all. Just because someone has 3, or 8 or 15 or 26 of something you want or covet doesn’t mean they need to give them away to you, period. What would these type of people do if they got a hold of one of these “hoarders” cars? Probably not much. Most of the car guys I know are fixated; if they want a damn GTO, then they are going to find a goat. They don’t get upset that someone has bunch of them they won’t sell to them, they just move on. They’ll shake their heads and tell the tale over a beer, but there are lots of them out there, some much better than others. That’s the breaks people. I have a number of parts type vehicles up here, and the few who have seen them remark “Jeez, why aren’t you fixing that one up” (cuz it’s for parts!) or “Is it for sale” (of course it is, offer me me decent money, not scrap price and the promise you’ll pick it up next week, which you won’t, because Mom, wife, sister, cousin, boss or pastor won’t let you and/or give you a place to store it) and maybe we can work something out. Facts – There are kooky oddballs out there that will let stuff rot into the ground; deal with it. There are people that like collecting stuff, and won’t give it up until they are done with it. Get over it. Then there are people who have been bothered lots of times by the “best wishes” crowd. Appeal to them, and hopefully you’ll bring a treasure home.

      • Rally

        I agree with both of you! I love to come to these sites and won’t stop. Tired of the people out there who piss and moan about themselves not having what they see. I know somebody who collected a lot of British stuff in the 80’s and early 90’s when the cars were worth nothing. Most of the cars were saved from people who just didn’t care about them anymore and most where wives threatened the owners with they sell the car or it’s going to the junkyard. I am thankful for some people who decided to hoard some of these cars because they loved them. Without these people most of these cars would have gone to the crusher and ended up as a 1994 Toyota.

      • Horse Radish

        @rustowner
        Well written and to the point!
        Those people going on about it here-on after are really not the sharpest knives in any drawer and are the real losers here.
        Enough said.

        P.S.: I like the part about the parts cars to be sold for decent money.
        When I get these blank stares and people asking “what I want to get rid of” I cringe.
        They see the value, even in a parts car, but won’t pay up.
        So they obviously don’t have another one they need parts for or THEY’RE INSULTING MY INTELLIGENCE, by wanting to buy them for cheap so they can make profit on the parts. They don’t think, that I (could, would or) have thought of that.

    • Nova

      Knock Knock Knock!

      ” What do you want!? ”

      ” Sorry to bother you, but I’ve got $10,000.00 cash (visibly in hand) I’d like to

      see your collection and perhaps buy something…”

      ” That is, if you’d like to sell it! ”

      Hmmm….

      “…Let me grab my boots and I’ll show you around…”

      N.H.

      • jimmy

        hhmmm… no thank you im going to restore them one day

    • RogueInLA

      Having grown up on the ‘other side’ of this type of personality, I’d call him a hoarder. My father had an obsession with cars in 60s, had he been younger, we would have wound up with “Muscle Cars” rotting away on the farm. He wound up with over 200 cars parked around the place. Sacrifices??? yeah, there were times we went without things so he could feed his ‘habit’. While this was in the 60s, and many were bought for what seems ridiculous prices today ($50-$150) it all added up. When I was younger, I thought “oh neat”, but as I got older I came to agree with our mother that it was a ‘god damn waste of money’. To say ‘what this guy knew and acted upon long ago’, I doubt he bought these out of some sense of foresight as investments, or they wouldn’t be scattered around under trees, rotting away. Foresight would have been buying IBM or Apple. Like my father’s cars, they just were left to rot. Being in the midwest, they just all slowly returned to the elements. He’d never sell anything, or any cars, it was always “well, I might need a part off that one”, but he never did. When he died, we saved a few of the better ones, but the majority were so far gone that all they were good for was scrap. While I’ll agree they’re his cars, and his money, and his to do with as he pleases, I’d say hoarder is a far better description of this than ‘wise investor’. Were he truly concerned about them, they’d wouldn’t be sitting out under trees decaying. I wish I had a dollar for every “I’m going to restore it” car I’ve seen since, that I’ve watched slowly deteriorate until it’s just a worthless hulk, eventually sold off for scrap by the heirs, if it’s lucky, sold to someone who’ll resurrect it, but it’s now a far more difficult task than if the original stubborn SOB who sat on it just to say ‘this is MINE”, had sold it.

  14. gunningbar

    I dont think theres a chance to deal with this guy…fair price or not. Kooky. Forget it.

    • jimmy

      on the gto forum it says that the owner wont sell and will restore everything you know what that means

  15. Typical Story

    I think Horse Radish and Rustowner are missing the point. Here’s just another example of people who would rather let the earth take back what man created instead of giving anyone an opportunity to resurrect or restore. To me, this is just wasteful. This is a prime example of no amount of money would save these timeless classics from ruin. Our children may never know how machines such as these help change society, alter our existence, only to be lost like the fabled city of Atlantis. Sad, very sad.

    • Rustowner

      You’re speculating. How do we know this guy this guy won’t sell any of them, whole or for parts? How do we know that this guy hasn’t restored 1 to a dozen GTO’s, using these cars as parts? How do we know this guy didn’t save these cars (to be used as parts) from the crusher, where they would certainely met there fate? Would you rather look at a field with used washing machines or broken down late model cars? Many seem to have judged this “collector” with nothing but a few crappy pictures and a suspect story with almost no information. If someone showed up on my doorstep, unannounced, while I was in the middle of something, I wouldn’t be to keen to chat either. Or, because I’ve been pestered before by the looky loo’s who have no money but dreams and want to buy. Typical, I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but there are a LOT of “timeless classics” still out there. Since you’re so passionate about this, I will expect of you sir, to be drive down all the streets in your town, stop at all the repair and body shops, and junkyards and buy up any car that is older than 25 years. After all, they are timeless classics and they need to be saved! Not going to happen, is it. You can’t save all of them. It’s thought for everyone to wrap around their head around.

    • Horse Radish

      Typical .
      You must be in the envious have not camp…………..
      So ?, the wife tell you , that you can’t have them or ??

      The POINT is well explained above, but some people are just ‘bad listeners or don’t want to hear it.
      NAySAyer

  16. socaljoe

    Looks to be in the Fillmore area of Ventura County

  17. RoughDiamond

    Why don’t we all agree we can disagree and still be friends.

  18. Bonecollector

    Gotta say Horse Radish and Rustowner you have nailed it. You have both said what very few realize. I know first hand and have seen my share of idiots. I have a collection of vehicles. Quite a few actually. I have them for a reason. My reason I don’t have to explain. In the nearly 20 years never have I had anyone stop and say yes I would like to buy that. Lots of scammers determining what my house looks like combined with a net worth thinking I am an easy target. I must need the money because I live in a doublewide. Don’t blame me because I bought cheap property and paid it off after two years. Frankly I like money in the bank. I really don’t care for the white picket fence for you to drive by to admire. The pioneers settled their land and grew crops. I park cars on mine. Don’t be quick to judge. I have a regular job.
    But people are stupid. It is fun to see the many tricks like asking about the worst looking visable thing they see and have to have it. When you price it then it they will move onto the crux their interested in. not the first. Which really isn’t for sale. Oh, The….thats not for sale. Um, OK I’ll be back next week. Never see them again.Takes a good 30 minuites out of my life each time. So have learned a neat trick. My new reply is nothing is for sale. I’ll sell it when I want to and on my terms. When I do you can buy it off of ebay!

    • 433jeff

      Maybe we have nothing to offer the guy. He may have been collecting for 30-40 years, maybe he has had a steady diet of people stealing wrecking or low balling for 25 years, maybe he remembers the perfect 68 rally dash with reverb switches that someone butchered, he was saving it for a project and had to go elsewhere. Its his labor and $ , and its his investment. He sees us coming a mile away, wanting a deal , wanting 100$ less than what the toy is worth. Leave him be, no google earth, no drone, no pics from the street. Sheesh

  19. Mac Boy

    This guy is a “Collector” – Same as the “little old Lady” with 25 cats in her apartment…
    No way to properly care for or “save” these cars…or the cats…

    I can’t tell you how many times i heard – “Some day we’re gonna restore it” ..,
    only to return year after year and see the car still sitting outside in a side yard slowly rotting.

    60 years in the auto chasing business, and hundreds of” I’ll Never sell it” later i can say that
    “RUST” & “HORSE” don’t have a clue !!

  20. Addiction

    In the beautiful USA we have the option to do as we please with our property! If I own it, I can watch it rot! I am an addict of car / parts collecting and building and I despise seeing iconic beautiful cars wasting away but I also respect my fellow American and their choices to do what they wish with what THEY OWN! It is what it is and at the end of the day I keep looking for the ones that can be bought and saved!

  21. Dave S.

    I often wondered where the GTO’s went to die !

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