Bombay Beach

Last week I was in the Californian desert for work. It was hot. It was dusty. But mostly it was hot. My friend Ana and I stopped to see the Salton Sea, once a hotspot for tourism and ‘beach’ vacations, now deserted due to pollution and draining.

Bombay Beach was a popular town in the 50s, with celebrities and others visiting to fish and waterski. Now, the town is a living ghost town. The streets were a capsule in time. We saw a few people in the town, mostly viewing the derelict houses and abandoned structures. A few homes still lived. While stepping out to take a photo, a herd of chihuahuas ran out of a home to chase me from their stuffed bear in the street.

A large berm separates the town from the beach. Crossing over it felt like taking a wrong turn. Instead of a beach, there was a field of strewn structures, furniture, and even a semi-truck. Since 2016, the community has hosted a sort of yearly art festival. The beach was covered in art installations and sculptures from these events. Even though it was 108F outside, we walked across the beach to see a few of the installations and wondered what might become of this place.


The Town


Welcome to the Beach


The Sea

Shelby Written by:

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