Slab City or The Slabs is a snowbird campsite in the Colorado Desert in southeastern California, used by recreational vehicle owners and squatters from across North America. It takes its name from the concrete slabs that remain from the abandoned World War II Marine barracks of Camp Dunlap.Several thousand campers, many of them retired, use the site during the winter months. These “snowbirds” stay only for the winter, before migrating north in the spring to cooler climates. The temperatures during the summer are unforgiving (as high as 120 °F) (48 °C); nonetheless, there is a group of around 150 permanent residents who live in the Slabs all year round. Some of these “Slabbers” derive their living by way of government checks and have been driven to the Slabs through poverty. Others have moved to The Slabs to learn how to live off the grid and to be left alone. Still others have moved there to stretch their retirement income.
Located just east of State Route 111, the entrance to Slab City is easily recognized by the colorful Salvation Mountain, a small hill approximately three stories high which is entirely covered in acrylic paint, concrete and adobe. Salvation Mountain is Leonard Knight’s tribute to God and his gift to the world with its simple yet powerful message: “God Is Love.” Leonard’s passion has lovingly created this brilliant “outsider art ” masterpiece resplendent with not only biblical and religious scripture but unique sculptures and colors.
About 10-20 minutes into the desert you will find yourself in East Jesus, an open air exhibit/gallery and home to visiting artists.