Sunday, January 8, 2017

1 of 25: en route to salvation mountain

Happy 2017 faithful readers! Hope the year is treating you well so far. I have a cold and if that is the worst thing that happens to me this year, I would say I'm off to a good start.

First up for the 25 new experiences I'm supposed to subject myself to in 2017 (#experience2017) is a trip to Salvation Mountain.

For those of you that need a quick refresher, the new blog competition this year involves me experiencing 25 new things for the year 2017. 20 I get to pick myself and 5 need to be picked from the suggestions of my readers. If you need more information than that, see my blog post closing out 2016.

So, Salvation Mountain was suggested by a reader as something for me to do while hanging out with my family in Palm Springs. What is Salvation Mountain? Well it is a historic landmark located just outside the town of Niland (pop. 1,006) which is in Southern California on the Eastern side of the Salton Sea. Leonard Knight, over 30 years ago created the monument as a symbol of his devotion to Jesus and his message of love for the world. Leonard has since passed but the art project continues to this day through the work of other like minded individuals.

As this experience taps into a lovely meta narrative about ones devotion to ones art, and I had to travel along the Northern Coast of the Salton Sea to get there, I thought I would tack on a small side trip to  Bombay Beach.

Bombay Beach (pop. 295) is known as a top photography destination and not because of it's beautiful sandy beaches but because the town has a apocalyptic feel to it. Naturally, I felt drawn to it. I mean who doesn't like to hang out in the dilapidated structures of an abandoned town?! In all fairness the town is not completely abandoned, there is almost 300 people still residing there and it has become a popular destination for artists. Plus I noted a baptist church and a couple of bars, so clearly there was life still in that town.

So in the spirit of art and ones devotion to something greater than themselves, I give you the post-apocalyptic photoshoot "en route to salvation mountain". Enjoy.

The Highway Shots - what one sees as they drive on Highway 111 towards the Salton Sea

The Salton Sea 

ubiquitous beach shot
Salton Sea signage

Bombay Beach


Welcome to Bombay Beach

Place we used to call home

vacation rentals $25/day
bus stop

beach ruins

archeological dig

beach ruins 2

Receding sea line
sunny day at the beach

Inside the artist's studio - pictures I took of inside the art installation "Death by Lemons" by Greg Haberny (thank you Greg!)

Death by Lemons

stroll on the beach

Acid & Alkaline 
light fixtures

Keeping watch

The new art

Inside the artist's studio


Recycling plant


Salvation Mountain
Salvation Mountain signage

Salvation Mountain

the yellow brick road
tire trail

Jesus' shadow

tire marks the spot
Special thanks goes to my unofficial Bombay Beach tour guide Ernie for getting me all the good shots.

me and my guide Ernie

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