Last Friday, March 25th, the Salton Sea State Recreation Area (Salton Sea), California State Parks and its partners reopened Varner Harbor and Launch Ramp.
This new boat launch ramp, located on the eastern shore of the Salton Sea, is one of two public access points for recreational boaters.
The re-opening of the Salton Sea’s boat launch ramp is the result of a public-private partnership between California State Parks, Salton Sea Action Committee (SSAC) and the construction firm DEVCO. The dredging and repair work was performed by DEVCO, along with assistance from State Parks’ heavy equipment operators.
“The dredging of the channel and repair of the launch ramp at the state park is a historic event,” said Salton Sea Authority Chairman John J. Benoit. “It has been many years since the public has been able to launch boats from here.”
One of the world’s largest inland seas and lowest spots on earth at -227 below sea level, the Salton Sea was re-created in 1905 when high spring flooding on the Colorado River crashed the canal gates leading into the developing Imperial Valley.
For the next 18 months the entire volume of the Colorado River rushed downward into the Salton Trough. By the time engineers were finally able to stop the breaching water in 1907, the Salton Sea had been born at 45 miles long and 20 miles wide – equaling about 130 miles of shoreline.