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The slabs, an update


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Having visited the Slabs near Niland, Ca., its unique nature has always held a fond memory for us.

A few years ago we visited again and was disappointed seeing how much it has gone downhill.

We are Yuma for a few days getting dental work done in Mexico so today we decided to drive over to see what it looks like now.

If you have been there before, don't go.

If you have never been there, don't go.

It would be easier to visit an old town dump. That is, for the most part, what it looks like.

Salvation Mountain is still there and looks very good. It is being tended and they are doing a good job. There were a few rigs near it and that area looked good.

Farther in, it was like a city dump.

I talked to someone here in Yuma who has visited Slab City for several years. He said there were still a couple areas that were safe but for the most parts there were thieves, con artists, and meth labs.

The best thing for that place is a huge bulldozer and a large hole.

Btw, Niland doesn't look much better.




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I suspect 9 out of 10 people would find the Slabs somewhat repulsive and those that return occasional just accept it for what it is. Most of us spend our entire life in an antiseptic, sterile environment and become quite uncomfortable outside that experience.


For anybody that's never been to the Slabs and wondering what it's all about think of it as a big encampment of the homeless and street people scattered around an area living there permanently hand to mouth as best they can.


Leonard Knight, who created Salvation Mountain at the entry area, passed away in an elder care home in a San Diego suburb in February of 2014.

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Visited there last winter for a day. Untidy is one thing. Filthy is another....cant abide people who don't even try to keep clean.....turns them into animals. Some of them dump sewer on the ground and there is no excuse for that.

<p>....JIM and LINDA......2001 American Eagle 40 '.towing a GMC Sierra 1500 4X4 with RZR in the rear. 1999 JEEP Cherokee that we tow as well.


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We visited there in 2014 also while staying in Quartzsite. Our impression was the same as the rest of you that were there in recent years, mostly a "dumpy" area and no place we wold want to spend any time other than a drive by. Salvation mountain was about the only "nice" thing there. Certainly not what I had expected after reading about it many years ago.

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It's never been on my bucket list of things to see. :)

We drove though the area once several years ago, just to see for ourselves. It looked to us like slum living even then and one look was more than enough. :unsure:

Good travelin !...............Kirk

Full-time 11+ years...... Now seasonal travelers.
Kirk & Pam's Great RV Adventure



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We were there several times in the 80's. I thought it was a unique and safe place. People gathered there year after year. There was someone in town that broadcast news over the CB radio. They would take calls from anyone and relay to those staying there.

You could have a newspaper delivered to your door if you wanted.

There was someone who would set up a fresh water tank on a stand and keep it filled for you. There was garbage pickup.

There was a large flea market that had anything an RV'er would ever need.

There were mechanics, welders, and other services that might be needed.

It was a city without a government that did a good job of running itself.

Then the flea market was forced to close. Must have taken business away from someone.

People were allowed to squat year around. That was the beginning of the end.

It is an old military R&R base. The slabs are the cement floors for the buildings. There were streets as such.

Nothing there. For sewage one would dig a gopher hole. That is what it was called. As there is no water to contaminate, the sewer hose would be placed in the hole, a board over it, then dirt

Someone was even available to dig the hole for you.

Darn shame what was allowed to happen here.


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