Photos of Slab City, California 2019

I started another road trip across the US yesterday. And that meant another stop in the Last Free Place on Earth: Slab City. Still probably the weirdest place I’ve ever been and definitely one of my favorites. Much has changed in the last few years, but the spirit of the Slabs remains the same. As I enter the community known as East Jesus, I am once again greeted my Mopar, the wizard, who is outside lifting weights in the desert sun, wearing his customary all black ensemble.

Read my original article about Slab City, here: Slab City: The Last Free Place on Earth

Though I wasn’t able to spend much time in the desert this trip, Mopar did update me on the status of East Jesus, now a 501c3 and the only established art museum in Imperial County. The non-profit has purchased 30 acres in the Slabs. They now actually own the land they are set up on. He explained they’ll be able to expand even further now.

“And everyone else out here?” I asked. Would other squatters somehow try to buy up land out there too?

“As long as they don’t mind being surrounded by art….” Mopar drifted off.

Now a popular destination for tourist stop-ins, Slab City residents are organizing and commodifying: Signs for Slab City t-shirts, handicrafts, and cold soda line the entrance across from Salvation Mountain where only a few years ago, the area remained vacant.

I don’t know if anyone is keeping track… Since it’s not a “real” place, there is no government, and nearly everyone is transient. There is no way to know for sure, but to me, it looks more crowded. More trailers. More communities. More businesses.

That’s all the new information I have about the place. Perhaps next year I can spend another night or two out in the desert and see how things are really going for the residents of Slab City. For now, here are the new pictures. You can see the 2016 pics (and 2016 Mopar), here: Photos of Slab City, California

And lastly, here is a new video of the newly expanded TV wall:

Anyone else ever been to Slab City? Tell me what you think of this crazy place in the comments below.

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1 Response

  1. Donna Jones says:

    Slab City is an awesome place, there is local government ( police, fire,food bank,medical treatment, probation ect.) go out there on a regular basis So its not as lawless as some would think. But there are a LOT of drugs used manufactured and sold there. Its just like any other community around California just without the normal conveniences we have. I enjoyed visiting there. But like everywhere else in California it has a dark underbelly most will NEVER see ! I’ve been pushing this idea to local government here in Redding CA where our homeless problem has grown out of control. And believe something like this would help elevate some of this problem of people camping wherever they want ! Give them a place to go ! If you open it they will come, because they want somewhere to be but there’s nowhere for them. So they keep getting run off on a daily basis. There should be more places like slab city across California, it would surely help with the homeless problem across this state !

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