Thursday, October 7, 2021

Old Dump Site

 Yes, I realize "Old Dump Site" is not a very exciting blog post title! But finding old rusty trash, sometimes referred to as "desert gold", can turn up some really interesting tidbits. What's that saying about one mans trash? It can also give you a feel for how people used to live. Most of the dump sites I've come across are small and are usually associated with mining and miners. 99% of their trash is old cans: Beans, sardines, coffee, tobacco, beer. Occasionally they would supplement their diet with a rabbit, but their diet was spartan and lacked variety (beans, beans, and more beans). The site I'm going to show you today is different. It's much larger, and the "trash" is much more diverse. But I'm getting way ahead of myself...
 
As the sun was setting over Dale Dry Lake (the topic of two recent posts) and I was getting ready to call it a day, I noticed a small "bump" between the creosote bushes that didn't look natural. I decided to check it out.
That "bump" looks like a piece of metal, perhaps an old car part. Even more interesting is the stuff strewn over the desert floor all around it. I think I've discovered a dump site, and by the looks of it, it's quite large!
 
I didn't have much time to explore, as the sun was going down. But wow, this looks interesting!


You won't hurt my feelings if you tell me you don't get excited about digging around in old dump sites. Perhaps I'm weird that way, but to me, this is a super-interesting slice of history!
 

The trash is an interesting mix of old and more recent, which means this dump has been in use for a long time. I wonder if this is the dump location for the community that was here at one time (the original Dale, or perhaps the mysterious historic town of Bush??). 
 
I think this is an old "vent hole" can in the photo above. The contents would be heated to sterilize it, and prior to cooling down, a small piece of solder would seal the vent hole at the bottom of the can (you can see the solder mark on the bottom of this can). As the contents cooled, it would create a vacuum. History buffs can tell you exactly when cans like this were used. All I can tell you is that they are relatively old!
 
This jug handle has turned a nice shade of purple due to long exposure to the desert sun.


Lots of broken pottery here... and not the Native American variety!

Tepco pottery was popular in the 30's and 40's. They were heavy, ceramic dishes... the kind you might find at a diner. The Tepco factory was located in El Cerrito, north of Berkeley. People collect Tepco pottery now. Another clue as to the age of this dump site.
 
Another old mangled car. This one is about 300 yards from the main dump site. I have a strong suspicion that if you really spent some time here with a shovel and sieve, there's no telling what you might find!

This structure might look familiar to you from previous posts!

Heart cloud and Jeep
 
Jeep, salt piles, and a beautiful desert sky!


On my way back to pavement, I discover this road heading north toward the Sheep Hole Mountains. That could be quite an adventure, but it will have to wait for another day!

Very last photo of the day!
 
Thanks for joining me on this unusual adventure!
Linking with Skywatch Friday.
Stay safe and stay healthy!!



43 comments:

  1. Another excellent adventure. I love looking through old trash myself. Turkey Mountain here in Tulsa, being old ranching, farming, and oilfield has several small trash heaps. I'm told that they are protected by law, even the old broken window and bottle glass that surfaces and punctures bike tires.

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  2. Missed you last week but this post more than makes up for it. Quite some interesting finds you got there. Never new that was how they used to seal old cans

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  3. ...typically I don't like jump in a natural sight, but for some reason the old vehicle looks like art! Enjoy your weekend my friend.

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  4. I always enjoy my treks with you and I also like the dump sites you visit. Love the old pottery.

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  5. Dearest Peter,
    Guess you already unearthed quite a big part of that dump site's puzzle in regards to its age.
    Sad in a way that so much is left into the environment...
    Hugs,
    Mariette

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  6. I love all the photos, what an interesting way to spend some time!

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  7. So very beautiful! Bottles. Bottles are fascinating, especially pharmaceutical ones for liquor. Tiny ones that opium came in. Thanks as always for a very worthwhile distraction!

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  8. Dump sites aren't interesting now, but as time passes, and the stuff becomes older, it becomes more and more interesting. I can see why it piqued your interest.

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  9. Wonderful place, Amazing clicks

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  10. It´s an exciting title. When I visited a half-cousin as kid in her village we found an abandoned hut, and boy. We found plates, cups and even clothes!

    Very, very beautiful, dramatic pics.
    May I print the second to hang up in our condo?
    Interesting with the can. And the jug is beautiful.

    Looking forward to that next adventure!

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  11. The desert sky is so beautiful! Your pictures are amazing!

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  12. Thanks for another great post.

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  13. The treasure in the desert but in a slightly different form.Again great photos where would that be due to. Location,location and location.

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  14. The dump site artifacts are interesting props for photography. Lovely pictures as always!

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  15. You show us impressive photos, I am amazed and thrilled! Beautiful sky too, which fits well as a backdrop!
    Have a nice weekend!

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  16. We find old dump sites in the woods sometimes and usually have a poke around. It’s an adventure to see if you can date them by the objects you find. The internet has made that likelihood a lot easier than a while ago.

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  17. Aw shucks, I love dumps. always have since I was a kid. I had to smile at the old car hulks with bullet holes in them. I bought some land once and was shocked to find an old T-Model hulk rusted and with no bullet holes in it. I had never seen this. I was as guilty as the next gun nut I guess, I shot a lot of old hoods and doors to 'zero in' my rifle.
    I enjoyed the trip today more than I can say. THANKS!

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  18. PS: I loved the Jeep and sky shot, along with the rest, also.....

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  19. Old dump sites are treasures. As you say they can show us how people lived. New dump sites are proliferating at such a rate, though, that it makes me wonder if future archaeologists' main impression won't be how much we discarded.

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  20. Perfect capture of the jug with the sky as a backdrop!

    I remember dump sites as well where unlikely treasures can be found, though rare. These days they remind me of a scene from The Last Plastic Straw environmental docu

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  21. Interesting post.
    I saw old cars like in this post on Cumberland Island, Ga. The Carnegies owned the island, so it probably belonged to them.

    Have you been to Glass Beach, near Fort Bragg? It'd be interesting to visit.

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  22. Wow! Great sky shots juxtaposed with the 'Desert Gold' ~ Xo

    Living in the moment,

    A ShutterBug Explores,
    aka (A Creative Harbor)

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  23. I would enjoy looking at all that old and rusty trash. My mother had a mixing bowl with that very same pink and blue stripe.

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  24. A nice find. I majored in cultural anthropology in college and, although I didn't have to do any archeology field work, I learned enough about the process to know how important trash dumps are in investigating cultures of the past. And sometimes, the recent present, too. They are - dare I say it - like gold mines to an archeologist.

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  25. The mysteries that the desert holds are once again shown life through your photos. Great photos and what a unique location. Have a great weekend.

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  26. Your header photo is one of the most beautiful photos I've even seen in my life.

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  27. You find the most amazing "things".

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  28. another exciting adventure. holes on the car bodies make me think of bullet holes ;-).

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  29. Judging from bullet holes that must be Bonnie´s & Clyde´s former car. ;)

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  30. There is a lot of interesting treasures in the deserts. Beautiful sky.

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  31. great color of the sky....

    like in another world that save a peacefull place to go

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  32. I will admit that this is not as exciting as many of your other posts, but we do learn a lot about people from studying such sites. Trash has to go somewhere!!!

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  33. I wonder if animals ever try to make their homes in what people dump there? like the old car parts etc

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  34. Beautiful skies! The trash of yesterday can be the archeological finds of tomorrow. Where I live archeologists have done digs to find clues to ancient people and are exited to find rock tools as well as spears ad arrowheads. They also find pioneer trash such as pottery shards and bottles. It truly is a look into the past!

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  35. So much fun to fossick around in an old dump site. I can remember my first time - it was a 44 gallon drum full of old household rubbish, and I managed to "rescue" quite a few pieces from it!

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  36. I love to explore, forage, and pick. My cat broke an old glass bottle with a giraffe on it that I found. Happy hunting!

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  37. some kind of dumpsites are interesting. I like the piece of jug you are holding up. It is beautiful agaist the sky. But I can never understand why it is easier to get rid of an old car in the desert? Why just leave it there? Love your beautiful desert sky. Espedially the photo with the jeep. :)

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  38. Some very impressive rock art that's stood the test of time.

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