My Visit to the Salton Sea
The Salton Sea is another place I have always wanted to see, and it’s less than an hour from here. So Sunday morning I packed up the dogs, and off we went for another adventure. I read some info about the area before my visit to the Salton Sea, because I have always been curious about it. I read some time ago that back in the day it was quite the place to go, but in the last few decades, not so much.
Interesting facts about the Salton Sea. It all happened by accident in 1905. “In an effort to increase water flow into the area for farming, irrigation canals were dug from the Colorado River into the valley. Due to fears of silt buildup, a cut was made in the bank of the Colorado River to further increase the water flow. The resulting outflow overwhelmed the engineered canal, and the river flowed into the Salton Basin for two years, filling the historic dry lake bed and creating the modern sea, before repairs were completed.” (from wikipedia) Click the link for more info.
It is 235 feet below sea level, and is 15 miles wide and 35 miles long. Way bigger than I expected.
It is very high in salt, about twice what the ocean is. The lakes salinity has been increasing as the water level drops over the past years, and is expected to rise even higher in the next 10 years. The only fish that live in the lake are tilapia, and if you are so inclined you can catch as many of these as you want.
I was really hoping I could walk on the shore with the dogs, but there are signs stating no dogs, and when I asked at the state park they told me it was because of the barnacles. The shore is not sandy like you would expect, but is nothing but barnacles. Millions, and millions, and billions, and billions of them.
One reason I wanted to go, is because in winter the Salton Sea gets a lot of migrating birds. The state park ended up being a good spot to see some of these birds.
When I was walking around the state park looking at the campground, I looked up and saw hundreds of white pelicans.
There were a bunch of black necked stilts there. This was a new bird for me, and they were so fun to watch.
I drove further down the lake, because I wanted to check out the primitive camp spot that the state park runs. It was basic, but very nice. I can only imagine what sunsets are like here.
I sat here for a while and enjoyed the water, and the sunshine. I kept driving along the east side, until I got to Bombay. This is one of those places that maybe back in the day was nice, but it’s pretty disheveled and run down now. So, I headed back to the main state park. After walking the dogs, I left them in the truck so I could walk along the shore.
Of course I had my camera, and was ready for any birds.
These brown pelicans came soaring in.
There are a ton of seagulls, and I know they are pretty common everywhere. But I like this in flight shot.
I also saw this single egret.
There is a big wildlife refuge on the far end of the lake that is suppose to have all kinds of birds, and wildlife. I didn’t have time to go that far though. So, another trip maybe.
It is a harsh, and unusual environment, but is home to lots of birds, and other animals. I was glad I took the drive to experience it.