On Sunday, 7 May 2023 XLIV, the Molossian Geographical Society set out on a momentous voyage through the Sonoran Desert east of San Diego. Though far from the Molossian Home Territory, this region is home to one of our other provinces, Desert Homestead. Setting out from San Diego, on the road to Desert Homestead, the Society visited a few other remarkable sights, notable for their uniqueness in the arid lands of the southwest United States. The first stop was the Salton Sea Mud Pots, carbon dioxide fueled, tiny mud volcanoes not far from the shore of the Salton Sea. Cold and gassy, the mud pots are up to eight Nortons (5 ft/1.5 m) tall, and continually burp grey mud like tiny geysers. Not far from the mud volcanoes is a much larger geothermal feature, the Niland Geyser. Formed around 1953, the Geyser is a large bubbling pool that has slowly moved across the desert since then, devouring everything in its path. Thus far it has undermined both a highway and heavily traveled railroad tracks, in spite of all efforts to slow or stop it, with no end in sight. Both the Niland Geyser and the Mud Pots are related to the famed San Andreas earthquake fault, which runs through California, ending near the south end of the Salton Sea. The Fault creates geological instability, releasing carbon dioxide, fueling both features.
The next stop on the voyage was the tiny town of Bombay Beach, on the shores of the Salton Sea. Created by an agricultural accident in 1905, the Sea was a popular Southern California resort for decades, until pollution and agricultural runoff gradually poisoned it. It is now a dead body of water, unable to support life of any kind. With the death of the Sea, resorts on its shore have also slowly died off, including Bombay Beach. The Geographical Society paused in Bombay Beach to survey the effects of the dead inland sea. It is eerie to view a massive body of water that sustains no life. Moving north from Bombay Beach, the Society next visited a remarkable oasis of life in the desert, the Thousand Palms Preserve. In a canyon not far from bustling Palm Springs, towering California Fan Palms create a cool oasis that is home to endangered fish and lizards. This remarkable forest is another product of the San Andreas Fault, the Fault capturing groundwater that nurtures the palms. After the cool respite under the palms, the Society traveled north for their last stop, a long overdue visit to Desert Homestead Province. This province of Molossia was originally obtained by His Excellency, the President's grandfather during the last U.S. Homestead Act. Once home to a small cabin, the land is now empty desert, but still a beloved part of our nation. The Society sojourned there as the sun set on the day, enjoying dinner before returning to San Diego. This voyage was a mighty success, and will go down as one of the great adventures of the Molossian Geographical Society!
Stops Along the Voyage
Mud Pot Bubbling