The very first stop (after late night tacos + coffee in Los Angeles) on 2017’s road trip out west was the Seven Magic Mountains. I’m going to assume if you use instagram, you’ve probably seen one… or fifty billion photos of these incredibly colorful boulders.
This art installation in the middle of the desert opened up in May of 2016 and from the second I saw it I was in love. Less than a year prior we had driven around the same area and I was disappointed to have been so close but missed out. Why couldn’t they have been there then?!
Eventually, as time passed, my intrigue grew to disinterest as I saw photo after photo after photo pop up on social media. Gosh, I hate to even admit that. It sounds so bitter but it’s at least a little bit understandable, right? Every photo I saw showed the “mountains” surrounded by people. It looked so crowded. It just didn’t seem like somewhere very enjoyable. Part of what I love so much about our trips to the desert is that it’s kind of a solitary thing. The places we go just seem so far off the grid, so untouched and untainted. It’s an escape of sorts.
Still, I couldn’t resist the lure of these wildly colorful things in the middle of the desert. I had to see them with my own eyes. We drove through the night, stopped to sleep a bit at a rest area, and arrived at the Seven Magic Mountains as the sun came up. To my surprise, there wasn’t a soul around. We had the whole place to ourselves. It. was. magical! Seriously, an amazing way to start the trip.
Normally I get my film hand checked at airport security since it shouldn’t be X-rayed. This year I didn’t have room in my carry on-to take my land camera which already had film in it. I just decided to toss it in my checked bag and hope for the best. I was pleased to see that the resulting damage was actually a pretty cool looking effect.
They’re only going to be on display for two years so I’m super happy I finally got the chance to see them. I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed it even a fraction of the amount I did if it had been as busy as it always looks in photos but the Seven Magic Mountains are definitely worth waking up super early for!