To Skooliepalooza… or not!

The week finally came! We have been preparing for Skooliepalooza 2022 for two years now and we were finally just a few days away! While the exact location is subject to change each year, the location is always near Parker, Arizona. Where we have been parked north of Phoenix is about 3 hours from Parker. Finally, the coordinates were announced and, when we looked them up, the location was in California. Not far into California, but across the state line nonetheless. Oh no! As many know, our protection preferences and California laws don’t mix well. We were devastated to say the least.

While parked on the State Trust Land we had two very popular and well publicized skoolies park near us and, while visiting with them one night, we learned they were in a similar quandry. We had heard many people were very disappointed about the location change as, while we might be bus hippies, we all recognize the potential dangers of life on the road and choose from a plethora of defensive devices, most of which are illegal in California. It was nice to know that we weren’t the only ones considering not going and disappointed with the choice of location.

In preparation to leave, we went to a few grocery stores to stock up on food. While at the Fry’s (Kroger subsidiary), I found a clearance section and this mug was there. I just HAD to have it! For those who haven’t heard about our Nomad Miracle Find, you can read about it here.

“When life gives you lemons, ask if they’re organic!”

On Thursday morning we packed up, tidied up our spot so it was nicer than when we got there, and headed to Parker, Arizona. There is a ton of BLM land (land owned by the Bureau of Land Management for the use of the general public) in Parker for us to choose from, so we felt confident we could spend the night when we got there. We were hoping to run into some other busses on their way to Skooliepalooza.

When we got to Parker, however, there was a massive atv race thing that had reserved the land for their event. We had to go 10 miles down a dirt road, the first half of which was on a reservation and didn’t allow for camping. Of the second half, 3 miles were roped off for the race and the rest was literally packed with rvs and trailers along with vendors and the atvs. Then the end of the road was blocked off for the start of the race and the only vehicles that were allowed through were those towing registered race vehicles. We pulled over to reconsider (it was getting dark and we had no cell service, so we had to make a decision fairly blindly and quickly) when a man on a bicycle stopped to ask if we were OK. We explained and he said we were welcome to park by his little bus for the night as he was already here before the event descended on the area. We decided it was best to just camp there and make more decisions in the daylight.

Miles and miles of rvs and camper trailers!

In the morning we met back up with Howard, the man on the bike; shared bus tours; exchanged numbers; and agreed we would send him a map pin drop when we got to Skooliepalooza so he could come too! While chatting, the race was beginning and we got to see the chase helicopter following the first of the race atvs.

They race one vehicle at a time and the team’s own helicopter follows from overhead to make sure they are on the right path. It is the middle of the desert after all!

We then packed up and were on our way!

Less than an hour later we had arrived! Busses were everywhere! We picked a spot in the back of the “peace camp” as opposed to “music camp” that apparently would play loud music for many of the nighttime hours. It was lovely! We had made it there early enough that we were given a limited-edition “SKPL 2022” sticker. The first 320 busses each got one! We wanted to meet a bunch of people but we were all setting up so we wandered around for a few minutes and finished our unpacking as well. We saw a few of the people with bus accounts we follow on YouTube and got to meet some of them! We got to talk to Jimmy and Natalie (from YouTube) and see their bus in person. It’s really pretty and they are really nice people in real life, too. Also, Howard (the guy from Parker) arrived and we got to visit with him some more, as well.

On Saturday (Skooliepalooza day 2) we met more people and, while I was making lunch, Jeff took the scooter for a spin to find where some other people we had been looking for had parked. On his way back, he heard some devastating news! The whole camp was being kicked out and all 400+ busses had 24 hours to leave! What!?!? He got the phone and went to find people with the coordinates of the new location while Bray and I packed up the bus to move… again!

To be continued in a couple of days…!

3 thoughts on “To Skooliepalooza… or not!

  1. oh wow! what a goings on!! but the mug is perfect! lol…very interesting, can’t wait for part 2 and pictures of these buses.. sounds like everything worked out and you got to meet a lot of people!! that’s awesome! CA sucks! glad you got to stay in AZ!


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