The site where land-speed records have been set over the past 100 years received an estimated 2,000 tons of salt at the end of the access road. It is the first step to a much longer project to help preserve a national treasure.
There has been a significant loss of salt in the area since the ’40s. While millions of tons of salt brine have been pumped back in recent years, a supplemental dry salt program will focus on targeted areas of the race tracks.
The salt was successfully deposited on the mud surface of the Bonneville Salt Flats. It was graded and then dried to a hard, concrete-like racing surface. The site is a National Landmark and a geologic phenomenon of international significance. For motorsports enthusiasts worldwide, it is hallowed ground. From the first speed record attempts in 1914 and through the present day, hundreds of records have been set and broken in a variety of automotive and motorcycle classes.
“The dry salt laydown project marks a milestone event as we celebrate a century of racing at the Bonneville Salt Flats,” said Doug Evans, chairman of the Save the Salt Coalition. The Coalition coordinated the project with SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association), the Southern California Timing Association (SCTA), the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Shelton Construction. Shelton deposited the salt over the mud, an area once covered by salt. The company has decades of experience working in and around Bonneville.