Abandoned Trailer Park: 2018
I first visited this abandoned trailer park in 2017. Kaylah of The Dainty Squid generously offered to show me and a friend around some abandoned spots in Ohio, but this trailer park was by far the highlight of our day. When I realized that my friend Shannon and I would be driving right by it on my recent trip back home, I couldn’t not stop.
The trailer park is in a pretty remote location, and honestly, I have no clue how you’d ever find it without being told exactly where to look (thanks again Kaylah!). Despite its seclusion, the cabins and trailers had much less stuff inside of them than they did a year ago, and everything was significantly more damaged.
The only thing of note still remaining is that perfectly spooky stack of books (minus, intriguingly, The Nixon Recession Caper). I took a nearly identical, if not better, photo of it back in 2017. My favorite is still Hearse Class Male, which I know for a fact is available on Amazon, because I just sent a copy to my friend JMP as a joke (but also, consider me intrigued—honorable mention goes to Uneasy Lies the Dead).
I still can’t find much information about this park, or why it appears as if everyone picked up and left at the same time without taking their possessions. Isn’t that the point of owning a trailer, that you can take it with you when you go? Most abandoned places have a post-apocalyptic feel to them, but this place even more so. To make matters even more mysterious, there is an active trailer park located very close by, and I’d imagine that this waterfront property was, at least at some point, considered desirable.
The contrast between what was obviously a once-vibrant vacation community and the twisted, rusty metal hulks that remain is staggering. Several of the cabins appear to have been set on fire, most have collapsed roofs, doors hang open and glass is shattered. I always wonder how places like this decay exactly—is it simply nature wreaking havoc, or do people seize the rare opportunity to destroy without consequences, taking out their frustrations by toppling refrigerators and smashing TVs?
It’s thrilling to explore off-the-grid places like this park, of course, but there’s sadness as well. Human touches like the stack of books or personalized trailers like the Serenity or The Escape Hutch allude to the lives once lived here but leave us only with questions—were the people who lived here happy, were they part-time residents, where did they all go, and most importantly, why did they leave in the first place?
Having the opportunity to revisit abandoned locations is not something to be taken for granted. The very nature of abandoned spots demands immediacy and there are no guarantees of what you’ll find (if anything) when you return. Documenting the way a spot evolves and changes is just as interesting to me as exploring a place for the first time and I can only hope that I have a chance to see this park again in the future.