Carla, I and Debbie took a short drive north to the Imperial Dam area to check it out. This dam is quite different than any that I had seen before. It’s actually more of a big retaining wall with siltation and diversion sections. This is part of the reservoir behind the dam.
This is a bad photo of the arcing portion of the dam that leads into the siltation areas. The main dam is beyond the picture in the background. You can a better idea of the layout from the Imperial Dam link. The area to the immediate right of the photo is a small picnic and camping area. A few weird people occupied the parking area…and I mean weird.
A better shot of the arcing dam portion.
No one was around to fill us in on what these devices are specifically, but I would surmise they are part of the siltation removal system.
Farther upstream is a nice boat launching area. The dam is off to the left in the distance. The juxtaposition of solid rock and water seems strange to me.
The previous photo was taken on top of a small dam looking below into the reservoir. This is was the small dam is holding back.
The entire area below and to the immediate west of the Imperial Dam is called the Imperial Dam Long Term Vistor Area. You can dry camp or boondock here for up to 7 months for $180. It is managed by the Bureau of Land Management which controls thousands of acres in the west. Water, waste pickup, and dump stations are provided. Talk about cheap living! There are other LTVAs in the southwest. The nearest town is Yuma, and you can imagine the economic impact. Many RVers form small cliques or towns by clumping together. A few erect small structures and have rock-lined driveways with solar lights!
These burros roam the area as well. Left behind by the Spanish? As you can see the terrain is not much good for anything else. Few plants grow here, so why not have a cheap place for people to gather.
A nice end to the day.