Go Here: Dead Horse Bay in New York
Dead Horse Bay in Brooklyn, NY is not the beach you go to for a day of sun and swimming; it's an awesome time capsule full of garbage treasures. Please don't go swimming in the water.
Hidden away about a 15-minute hike into the weeds of Marine Park and just before the bridge to the Rockaways, Dead Horse Bay is a small body of water off of Barren Island, between the Gerritsen and Rockaway inlets. The area has a long, weird history, like most of New York: In the seventeenth century, it hosted a tide mill for grinding wheat, and in the nineteenth to twentieth centuries it became home to a fertilizer manufacturer (read: animal grindery) hence the grizzly name of the bay; the bones were dumped directly into the water, and still wash up today. Once those factories closed, the entire area became a landfill for the city's garbage.
The landfill was filled and closed down in the 1940s, but in the 50s the cap burst, and garbage began to leak into the ocean. Now, over 60 years later, the daily tide covers Dead Horse Beach with a new supply of artifacts and weird garbage treasures, like old bottles, leather shoes, dolls, and even pieces of newspaper that have miraculously survived decades in the water. They really don't make things like they used to. There are several half-buried boats in the sand, and the whole area really feels like a glimpse into the post-apocalyptic future, only with less plastic bottles. Here are some pics from our most recent trip.
If you're planning a trip to check it out, make sure to bring along sturdy gloves, and waterproof, thick-soled shoes. This is not the place for a barefoot stroll. Check out some more information on Dead Horse Bay, including how to get there right here.