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Looking Back on The History of the “Land of the Valley”  

October 10, 2023

Teravalis sits between two mountain ranges in the Phoenix-Metro area’s West Valley: the Belmont Mountains and the White Tank Mountains. When looking for a location for our newest master planned community, we were drawn to this area of the Valley for its ideal logistics and because it perfectly showcases the natural beauty within the Copper State.

Explore the history of these two majestic mountain ranges and what makes them a unique setting, unlike any other place on the planet.

The Belmont Mountains: A Source of Growth and Prosperity

The Belmont Mountains are located west of Teravalis, just a few miles North of Tonopah. The range then continues to connect to the Big Horn Mountains, just to the southwest. The Belmont Mountain range stretches 25 miles and its highest peak, Sugarloaf Mountain, is over 3,400 ft. in elevation.

The range drew several prospectors during the 1860s, though the area didn’t explode in popularity until around the 1920s. The area had a boom, seeing a large number of World War I veterans flocking to the area to enjoy the desert temperature and dry climate. During this time, families began looking for work, discovering the plentiful resources the Belmont Mountain range provided. Residents in the area began to find several veins of silver and lead. This discovery made way for the Tonopah-Belmont Mine, which was named after the Tonopah Mine in Nevada.

Around 50 residents worked the mine, not only mining silver and lead but small amounts of gold and copper as well. The mine was a hotbed of activity until the Great Depression when work slowed, and would finally close during the outset of World War II.

While the mine was completely sealed off in the 90s, Belmont Mountain Trail is still a popular hiking location that leads to some of the old ruins.

Sunset over Teravalis

An image of an Ocotillo cactus and the Belmont Mountain range in Teravalis.

The White Tank Mountains: A Snapshot into Prehistory

To the east of Teravalis, residents can experience the rich history of the White Tank Mountains. The area became a popular destination for prospectors in the 1860s when gold was discovered.

The name comes from the northeast area of the mountains, where a natural “tank” surrounded by white granite cliffs provided water. Unfortunately, heavy rains hit around the late 1800s to early 1900s, causing the water tank to collapse. The exact location of the original water tank remains a mystery to this day.

You can still find several smaller water tanks and springs throughout the mountain range, making it a popular destination for hikers and sightseers.

By far, the most impressive sights around the White Tank Mountains are the several petroglyphs that paint the rocks and cliffs. Eleven prehistoric sites have been excavated throughout the White Tanks. As far back as 500 to 1100 A.D., the Hohokam, who built an agricultural-based community in the heart of the Sonoran Desert through advanced irrigation, would frequent the White Tank area as a hunting ground. The petroglyphs feature geometric designs and drawings of wildlife that have survived over a thousand years.

From the 1700s to 1900s, the Yavapai people would also make their way to the White Tanks to hunt and gather cactus fruit. The Yavapai were a nomadic tribe that never set up a permanent community on the mountain range. Still, they did leave additional drawings on the rocks, providing yet another historical account of their culture.

The Role of Teravalis: An Innovative Approach to Sustainability and Modern Living

While the Valley continues to evolve, there is still so much that remains of the past. Teravalis will bring new families and innovations to the West Valley while still maintaining the history of our natural wonders and the people who called the surrounding mountains home ages ago.

Teravalis promises substantial open spaces, energy-efficient home designs, and sustainable technologies that help embrace the surrounding environment. By introducing new generations to the West Valley, we will also set the stage for enhanced opportunities for growth and new stories that will live on throughout the years.

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About Teravalis™

Teravalis is primed to be a 37,000-acre premier master planned community located in the West Valley of the Phoenix metropolitan area, in Buckeye, Arizona. Translating to “land of the valley,” Teravalis is positioned between the White Tank and Belmont Mountain ranges and is committed to embracing the natural High Sonoran Desert beauty. Utilizing innovative technology and sustainable planning, the community will feature unparalleled amenities and wide-open spaces to explore and discover. Teravalis is a community of Howard Hughes®, known for its mission to curate vibrant communities that elevate the everyday, creating meaningful moments in great places where people can live their best lives – and thrive for generations to come.