A Travellerspoint blog

Slab City

The strange and amazing camping experience.

So this is a little late since we have been in Mexico for several weeks already, but I wanted to post some pictures of the most random and whimsical camping experience we have had yet.

After consulting a free camping website, we found a spot inland in southern California near a town called Niland by the name of Slab City. If you have seen the film 'Into the Wild' you may be familiar with the spot. It is a random spot in the desert with a bunch of people living for free in an ecclectic spontaneous community that attracts a pretty full spectrum of people. It is kind of like burning man that never ends (minus the burning of the man).

We rolled in, following a mustang convertible with six hippies (plus gear and musical insrtuments), and set up to find out that Slab City has its own radio station, cafe, bar, book exchange, Holy site (salvation mountain), pet cemetary, and welcoming committee. The 'town'is a plowed down military base in the desert, of which only the cement slabs are left. Many people set up and live in school buses, RVs, and other mobile accomodations.

After wandering around (and being threatened by many angry dogs who were luckily chained up) we decided that it is a bit like a microcosm for a bigger city. The inner city, which once bustling and busy, is full, almost exclusively, of young crusty punks. There is a lot of trash left behind from likely many decandes of people living in mobile rigs. People in fancy larger RVs have expanded to the outskirts of 'town'.

It was a real interesting place to spend a night. I would not hesitate to return with an open mind and a lot more time.

Here are some photos of Slavation mountain and Slab City:





Posted by SusieMiller 19:08 Archived in USA

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