Salvation Mountain is a colourfully painted, religious themed, manmade hill, near Niland, California. It's also, very close to slab city and East Jesus. This is the hippie, artsy community, that has yet to be informed the 60's are over.
If you are interested in seeing unique and unusual places, don't miss this. So, you don't want to visit there, because you aren't a believer? You may be one, when you leave. If you don't get the message, it's still worth the visit.
Construction began on Salvation Mountain in 1984 by Leonard Knight. The message is simple, without the complicated interpretations, made by various religions. His message is "God is Love." Just think, how much better off the world would be, following this message.
Salvation Mountain was built with straw bales, trees, tires, and various items found in the desert and at a nearby dump. It's glopped together with adobe clay, dug right from the desert and topped off with gallons upon gallons of paint.
The mountain collapsed in 1989 and had to be rebuilt. Apparently, this must have been a good opportunity to revaluate techniques and improve upon the design, since the second attempt, is still standing. Mr. Knight, also asked for some special guidance from above and it seems God delivered!
It really must have been a massive amount of work to build. I have read, it was like a full time job. How long could this possibly remain intact? Maintenance will have to constantly continue, to keep it from being destroyed by the harsh climate.
There is a path and stairs, up salvation mountain called the yellow brick road. The day we visited, we were unable to go up to the top. It had been raining earlier and could damage the paint job. The paint looked quite bright and fresh, so maybe there was also fresh paint, that hadn't finished drying.
This old truck was Leonard's home for 26 years, while he worked on his mountain. This isn't the R.V. of my dreams and I certainly would not have wanted to live in those conditions. There was no running water, power or heat. It must have been a difficult way of life, but Leonard remained content, building, painting and sharing his message.
Salvation mountain was declared a National Folk art site in 2000. This must have been quite an honour, especially considering in 1994, it was nearly torn down.
Leonard Knight passed away Feb. 10, 2014; but thanks to caretakers and volunteers, his creation lives on.
For more information check out the official Salvation Mountain site.
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