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Meet The Oatman Ghost Town Celebrity Burros!

a person on a horse

Meet the Oatman Burros!

 Desert Wonder Tours offers Historical Oatman Gold Mine Town tours including from Laughlin, NV to Oatman,  from Las Vegas to Oatman, from Lake Havasu City to Oatman, & from Kingman to Oatman. So you can tour with Desert Wonder Tours in comfort and meet the Oatman Burros in person from several locations!

Deep into the Black Mountains of Arizona lies a small village nestled into the side of the mountain. Named for a young Illinois girl who was captured by Indians, Olive Oatman, the town was once a booming gold mining town. The main road to Oatman is the famous historical Route 66. Before it was bypassed in 1953, Rt. 66 was a mountain pass road catering to drivers between Kingman, AZ and Needles, CA.

In 1915,  a $10M gold find created a boom that lasted until 1924 with the town growing to a population of more than 3,500  in the first year. For about a decade,  the Oatman mines were among the largest in gold production in the West. Due to the rough terrain in the region, the preferred beasts of burden were burros who were able to subsist on the dry desert grasses, were hardy and sure-footed. As pack animals, they could handle heavy loads for provisions, ore, and equipment needed by the miners. The “wild” burros frequenting the streets of Oatman are direct descendants of the Gold Miners who set the animals free when the mines shut down. Most of these burros keep to themselves in one of the several herds throughout the mountains and surrounding desert, but a few of them come into town every day.  Others are “wanderers” who visit the village now and again.

Long time Oatman resident and local business owner, Kathy Jenkins, puts it aptly:

The Oatman Burros are Oatman. From Our first named Burro Hoover to Baby Hank, the burros have been the highlight of many visitors trips to Oatman. Walking the streets shopping, having lunch and loving on the burros makes your visit complete.”

Kathy runs the Oatman Burros Rehab and Recovery Sanctuary, a non-profit who’s Mission Statement is poignant:

We are their voice! It’s critical to be prepared to step up for the burros  wherever and whenever they need us.


Burros currently at the Sanctuary:
These beloved burros are known as “The Magnificent Seven“.


Meet Walter ~ Oatman’s Mayor

Oatman Mayor Walter

Walter having his morning coffee


Walter was born July 5th, 2019. Walter’s mother lacked enough maternal instincts to care for him. Walter was adopted by a great family. After he was grown, the people of Oatman elected Walter as their mayor. Follow Walter’s New Life on his Facebook page: 

and his website to find unique Walter merch:


Oatman’s Famous Mayor

Walter making an appearance at a local school









Meet the Mainstreet Burros

The Oatman burros share common lineage but each has unique special personality & traits. Here are some of the burros you may see when you visit Oatman:

Oatman Burro Dusty


Oatman Burro April

AprilDusty (Bell) 10/18/2008 Dusty is our smiling and singing Burro! If you have a treat and hold it above her head, she will smile for you when asked! She has an amazingly loving personality and is the best mother!

Oatman Burro Darrell/Rayce

Darrell/Rayce comforting Opal

Oatman Burro Darrelll-AKA-Rayce


Burro Name (Mother) Birthdate April (Bell) 04/07/2005 April is one of the matriarchs of the Current Oatman herd. She is both sugar and spice. When walking down Main Street, you will be reminded multiple times to watch your bags because she will grab them and will run off with your goods. You will have to put up a good fight to get it back.
Darrell/Rayce 08/16/2015 (Nikki)
Darrell/Rayce has two names depending on the side of town you are on. Darrell is one of my favorite Burros and is a survivor. She gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Opal 11/14/2018. In the second and third photo, you will see her comforting Opal after she was struck by a vehicle on 7/1/2019.

Oatman Burro Destiny


Destiny (Dusty) 09/02/2015

Destiny and Darrel are best friends. Destiny is one of Dusty’s babies and took after her momma in the good mom category. She absolutely loves a good butt scratch! Destiny is Walter’s grandma.


Oatman Burro Hazel



Hazel (Peanut) 3/8/2014

Hazel is quiet and shy. She loves hay cubes and butt scratches but is also ok with just sitting back, watching the happenings in town and searching for hay cubes that someone dropped. Hazel is very protective of Destiny and Darrell.



Oatman Burro Nikki



Nikki 12/28/11 (Peanut)

Nikki is a character. She is April’s sidekick and BFF! Together, they walk Main Street searching for the next unsuspecting visitor to steal a bag from! She has a very old soul and is an absolute sweetheart.






Oatman Burro Oliver


Oliver’s heart

Oliver 09/05/2016 (Cookie)

Oliver is the Alpha Jack of the Oatman Herd. When BLM made their list of burros who would remain during the 2020 roundup, Oliver was selected because of his beautiful coloring. If you look closely, Oliver has a heart on his right haunch.




Oatman Burro Annabelle


Annabelle 8/25/17 (Nikki )

Annabelle is an absolutely beautiful Burro inside and out. She has a heart of gold and is an amazing mommy to Hank. Annabelle is Tinkerbell’s mommy and was torn apart when Tinkerbell was kidnapped and while she tried when she was returned became estranged from her. When she gave birth to Hank in October of 2020, the glimmer in her eyes returned.]




Oatman Burro Hank




Hank (Annabelle) 10/05/2020

Hank is the baby of the Oatman Herd. Boy is this youngster a firecracker! He keeps his momma, the shop owners and visitors on their toes with his mischievous ways! Hank is Tinkerbell’s baby brother.



Oatman Burro Pickles


Pickles (Hazel) 05/27/2016

Pickles is one of our wandering burros. A bit over a year ago, she left Oatman with her son Smokey &a few of the other Oatman Burros. Pickles has not return to Oatman but has been spotted near the Narrows near Bullhead & in the Laughlin Ranch area. So keep your eyes open if you’re traveling from Laughlin to Oatman!



Oatman Burro Miss Kitty

Miss Kitty

Miss Kitty 09/16/2013 (Summer)
Miss Kitty is our other wanderer. She is a sweet girl who is probably one of the most chill Oatman Burro. She left with Pickles and a few other Oatman Burros and has still not Returned to Oatman.

A Tribute to Duke

Oatman Burros

Oatman burros paying tribute to their deceased alpha male, Duke.

Oatman Burro Duke

Deceased Alpha Male, Duke. His gravesite after dark & a handmade Cross.

Oatman Burros                  Oatman Burros                   Gone but not forgotten. 

Duke was an amazing Alpha to the Oatman Herd. He was so gentle with the girls and was an amazing mentor for the jacks. He was hit by a local and passed away Nov 15th, 2020

Come and meet the amazing “wild” Oatman Burros. They will all be your favorites!


* Desert Wonder Tours is 5 Star rated on TripAdvisor  Featured in Laughlin Entertainer Magazine and the Kingman Daily Miner

Contact Desert Wonder Tours here to see the Oatman Burros in person!

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Be sure to contribute your pics and experiences in our group Explore Northwest Arizona !