Salton Sea State Recreation Area
Elevation: -227 feet
Land Area: variable
In the heydays of the Salton Sea, traffic on Highway 111 would back up, as campers and boaters would crowd the entrance to California’s second busiest state park. With more visitors than Yosemite, there was even concern that swimmers might be in danger from the 400,000 boats that crowded the Sea each year.
Today the Salton Sea State Recreation Area receive a mere trickle of visitors, who come to enjoy hiking, boating, bird watching, swimming, fishing, and camping on the shores of California’s largest lake.
Spread along the northeast shore of the Sea, it features 5 campground sites, a boat launch facility, and a visitors center, complete with video presentations detailing the geography and history of the area. The main campground provides full hook-ups for RVs, showers, toilets, fire rings, and picnic areas, while other campgrounds to the south are much more primitive. However, even with the Sea’s unique beauty, don’t expect long tropical white sand beaches, as the shoreline is mostly made up of crunchy white barnacles.
For many years, the park was run by Superintendent Steve Horvitz, who became an influential force in the movement to save the Salton Sea. He has since been replaced.