June 21, 2021

Slab City – USA, a strange remote place

Want to get really get away from it all? While there are no signs leading to Slab City, you head east from Los Angeles to the desert, then south past the Salton Sea. There you will find an abandoned Marine base which travelers and locals have dubbed “The Last Free Place In America.”
Slab City (“The Slabs”) is a campsite inhabited by RV users and squatters from across America. Several thousand campers use the site during the winter months before departing for cooler climates when summer temperatures reach 120 degrees Fahrenheit. However, Slab City still has 150 residents that tough it out on the slabs year round. 
Some “Slabbers” come to the area just to live off the grid, while some live off of government subsidies (SSI, Social Security and Social Security Disability) and have been driven to the area through poverty. Others just want to stretch their retirement income. 
Slab City gets its name from the concrete slabs that dot the region. They are what remains of Camp Dunlap, a former World War II base which was given back to the state in 1961 and subsequently dismantled. The state still owns and controls the land, and while Slabbers are considered squatters, the government leaves them alone.