California’s natural infinity pool.
The remains of a pier, Bombay Beach.
The Salton Sea – California’s largest lake
This lake is a shallow, saline, endorheic rift lake located directly on the San Andreas Fault, predominantly in California’s Imperial Valley, and is about 226 ft (69 m) below sea level. The deepest area of the sea is 5 ft (1.5 m) higher than the lowest point of Death Valley. The sea is fed by the New, Whitewater, and Alamo rivers, as well as agricultural runoff drainage systems and creeks.
It’s this agricultural runoff and drainage, along with the high salinity of the rivers, that make this water rather putrid. Tons of tilapia wash up on shore, and the water has a peculiar odor.
The lake hasn’t been around for long, though. The Salton Sea as we know it began in1905, when heavy rainfall and snowmelt caused the Colorado River to swell, pouring over headgates for the Alamo Canal, gushing down the New River and Alamo Rivers, rushing over an Imperial Valley dike, and carrying the entire volume of the Colorado River to create the Salton Sea in two years.
The Salton Sea, however, has no outflow, so all the salt, all the runoff, and all the drainage stays in this salt-encrusted water.
Geek Talk This is a long exposure shot taken with the Nikon D90 and Tokina 11-16mm f2/8 lens and a B+W ND1.8 filter, keeping the shutter open for several seconds at f/22 to create the milky effect from the water. Shortly after I took this photo, while switching lens, one of the legs of my Feisol tripod suddenly shortened after it had been standing for five minutes, sending my camera plunging lens-first into the sand. Nothing appears permanently damaged, but it took a long time to brush the sand out of the lens, filters, and camera.
Equipment: Nikon D90, Tokina AT-X 116 Pro DX AF 11-16mm f/2.8 Lens For Nikon
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