Video: The Eerie Beauty Of The Salton Sea's Decay
"Useless Sea" is a short video from filmmaker Frank Tabouring featuring a series of gorgeous and haunting shots of the Salton Sea and the ruin that surrounds it. Tabouring attempts to find the beauty of the area despite the decay, and also touches on the Salton Sea's fragile ecosystem, and how it's "a peculiar place in desperate need of relief" to ensure it survives.
The Salton Sea, located about 180 mile east of Los Angeles, was accidentally formed in 1905 when engineers at the California Development Company dug irrigation canals from the Colorado River not the Valley. They cut into the bank of the river to avoid silt buildup, but the water breached the canal and turned a formerly dry lake bed into what we now know as the Salton Sea. The Salton Sea enjoyed resort tourism in the 60s and 70s, but failed to fully develop. What's left of the lake is extremely salty and doesn't always smell particularly pleasant, plus there are masses of dead, rotting fish that were unable to survive the salinity of the lake. However, if the lake disappears completely, we could be facing a major dust problem. L.A. adventurer Tom Carroll also explored this issue further in a video he released via his YouTube series, Tom Explores Los Angeles, last year.