Lonely Days (#1, Explore)
Moody weather at the end of the monsoon season. Salt / muck flats at the south end of the Salton Sea. At one time, when the water was higher, these trees probably provided roosting and nesting structure for cormorants, blue herons, egrets, osprey, etc. Now they're too far "inland" for anything except the raptors--I regularly see a Peregrine Falcon on this set of trees. Occasionally when the wind blows, or after a deluge of monsoonal rain, shallow water surrounds these trees--thus the muck underfoot when I tried to approach any further.
The Salton Sea is a strange place. Created by a dike break in ag lands along the Colorado River about 107 years ago, the Salton Sea partially fills a basin that was historically a body of water, filling and evaporating repeatedly, leaving much salinity behind. Today the Salton Sea is basically a repository for agricultural waste water and all the chemicals/salts/sh*t /garbage that it carries (some of it from Mexico via the New River). Despite the regular influx of waste water, the Salton Sea is shrinking, due to evaporation in the extreme heat of summer. The sea, actually California's largest "lake", is currently about 30% saltier than the ocean. As the salt increases, the fish die, and birds that utilize the area (Pacific Flyway, major migratory route), are negatively affected, sometimes with large die-off's as well. Right now it's a pretty "fragrant" area, with the beaches lined with dead fish.