I Went to the Desert by The Sea…

The Salton Sea is a saline, rift located directly on the San Andreas Fault in California’s Imperial Valley. The lake occupies the lowest elevations of the Salton Sink in the Colorado Desert of Imperial and Riverside Counties in Southern California. Like Death Valley, it is below sea level. The deepest area of the sea is 5 ft 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. The surrounding area is Califorina farm land with the production of dates, oranges and I even saw a corn field (not as big as Ohio corn)
It is estimated that for 3 million years, at least through all the years of the Pleistocene glacial age, the Colorado River worked to build its delta in the southern region of the Imperial Valley. Eventually, the delta had reached the western shore of the Gulf of California (the Sea of Cortez/Cortés) creating a massive dam which excluded the Salton Sea from the northern reaches of the Gulf.

As a result, the Salton Sink or Salton Basin has long been alternately a fresh water lake and a dry desert basin, depending on random river flows and the balance between inflow and evaporative loss. A lake would exist only when it was replenished by the river and rainfall, a cycle that repeated itself countless times over hundreds of thousands of years.

The creation of the Salton Sea of today started in 1905, when heavy rainfall and snowmelt caused the Colorado River to swell, overrunning a set of head gates for the Alamo Canal. The resulting flood poured down the canal and breached an Imperial Valley dike, eroding two watercourses, the New River in the west, and the Alamo River in the east, each about 60 miles.  Over a period of approximately two years these two newly created rivers sporadically carried the entire volume of the Colorado River into the Salton Sink.

The lake covers about 376 sq miles, making it the largest in California. The lake’s salinity is greater than the waters of the Pacific Ocean but less than that of the Great Salt Lake; the concentration is increasing by about 1 percent annually. Many species of fish are no longer able to survive except the tilapia.

 North Shore was a “swinging” place, “This was a very popular place. The Beach Boys would come out. And Jerry Lewis had a boat here, and so did the Marx Brothers. There were big boat races, and parties and dances. Clubs and organizations from all over the Coachella Valley came for meetings and parties

North Shore Beach and Yacht Club, opened in 1962, was the show piece of what was to be a two million dollar marine paradise – the largest marina in Southern California

(Old Post Card from internet)

Like most of the other locations around the Salton Sea, fluctuating water levels and flooding created problems. In 1981, North Shore suffered from a severe flood which wiped out the jetty at the yacht club, making it impossible for boats to dock there. The main clubhouse was closed and has yet to reopen. The views are still spectacular and it remains to be seen whether or not a solution to the high salinity problem will bring back this once glamorous resort.

Enjoy your day…
The Gourmet Farm Girl