Monday, February 16, 2015

Slab City

Our trip to Salvation Mountain was a by product of our trip to Slab City.

Slab City or The Slabs is a snowbird campsite in the Colorado Desert in southeastern California, used by recreational vehicle owners and squatters from across North America. It takes its name from the concrete slabs that remain from the abandoned World War II Marine barracks of Camp Dunlap.

Several thousand campers, many of them retired, use the site during the winter months. These "snowbirds" stay only for the winter, before migrating north in the spring to cooler climates. The temperatures during the summer are unforgiving nonetheless, there is a group of around 150 permanent residents who live in the Slabs all year round. Some of these "Slabbers" derive their living by way government checks (SSI, Social Security, and Social Security Disability) and have been driven to the Slabs through poverty. Others have moved to The Slabs to learn how to live off the grid and to be left alone. Still others have moved there to stretch their retirement income.

The site is both decommissioned and uncontrolled, and there is no charge for parking. The camp has no electricity, no running water, no sewers nor toilets, and no trash pickup service. Many campers use generators or color panels to generate electricity. Supplies can be purchased in nearby Niland, California, located about four miles to the southwest of Slab City.

We discovered that several people are living nicely in this environment and others are just falling below the lines of livability. The back part was more like a dump and several were observed with no means of water or electricity. The front part you could see the water tanks and solar panels. Interesting and probably a good hide out lol

Sorry for the lack of pictures.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Salvation Mountain

Did a day trip from Yuma to Niland CA to Slab City that has at it's entrance Salvation Mountain. This Mountain is quite an experience.

Salvation Mountain is an art installation covering a hill in the Colorado Desert, north of Calipatria near Slab City and several miles from the Salton Sea. It is in Imperial County, California.

The artwork is made fro adobe, straw, ad thousands of gallons of paint. Salvation mountain was created by local resident Leonard Knight (1931-2014). It encompasses numerous murals and areas painted with Christian sayings and Bible verses.

In 1985 Leonard Knight began his creation. Leonard was a classic lone dreamer, intent on feeding his vision. But he was friendly, welcoming to all who visited. He slept in the Salvation Truck, a decorated vehicle with a house on the back. The truck, like the mountain, is lettered with biblical quotations and a large "REPENT" warning. The sight of Salvation Mountain -- his three story tall, 100-foot wide riot of concrete, adobe and paint -- greeted him each morning.

His philosophy was "Love Jesus and keep it simple".