For many years, the Escapees RV Club has had a presence at the big Quartzsite winter event that brings hundreds of thousands of RVers to one huge spit of desert.
We attended the Quartzsite fun for the very first time last winter, and were blown away by the variety of places to camp, things to do and diversity of people drawn to the desert.
We likely won’t do a dedicated post about Quartzsite this year, but here are our posts from last year:
- The Social Side of Quartzsite
- Shopping at the Big Tent – Quartzsite, AZ
- Desert Boondocking off Plomosa Road – Quartzsite, AZ
When we were looking towards future convergence points for the newly formed Xscapers, Quartzsite was an obvious choice. A great way to bridge Escapees by morphing from their Happy Hour events, and then hopefully start some new Xscapers traditions.
A quick re-cap of Xscapers: Last March, we joined Travis & Melanie Carr at the 55th Annual Escapade, and announced the birth of Xscapers, a concept we had been working secretly on behind the scenes for the year prior. It is a new ‘club within a club’ offshoot of the Escapees aimed specifically at the working aged RVer. In October, the first official Xscapers Convergence was launched at the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta.
The concept behind a convergence, versus a rally, is being less formal. Less planned events as to allow attendees to have a life too – whether that be sneaking in work hours, exploring, homeschooling kids or whatnot. And of course, being camped amongst peers.
At this point, we have officially resigned our formal advising role to Xscapers – not because we don’t absolutely love the club, but simply because we’re setting intentions to not work so darn much.
So we had no expectations of having to attend this convergence, but of course we wanted to. Besides a constant yearn for community, we wanted to practice being attendees not hosts.
The first days of the Xscapers Convergence were planned to be January 15-17, held at the same location where the Escapees Happy Hour has been traditionally held for decades.
I have to be honest, I was not looking forward to this location one bit – it’s right next to the interstate, and not in a terribly scenic area of the desert. The area is relatively small for the number of predicted attendees, meaning parking would be tight.
But we sucked it up, and left our sweet pre-convergence isolated area of the Dome Rock BLM area where we had been hovering and getting an update to our Coverage? iOS app processed (our app that shows the coverage maps for the major carriers, that helps us determine our routing to stay connected).
And I’m so glad we did.
The community response was huge, with well over a 100 folks in attendance.
It was two jam-packed evenings of round table discussions (Boondocking, Working on the Road and RV Refrigeration). There were two huge bonfire evenings that involved much merriment and bonding over the flames. The mead that Mark Nemeth started at the Albuquerque convergence was brought out and shared (yum!!!).
Our hope that others would feel like us – and want to continue the party, but in a more ideal location was fulfilled. On Sunday morning, three scouts faced their hangovers and headed back over to Dome Rock and found a sweet little culdesac to claim for what became known as Xscampment.
Twenty or so rigs moved over to this little isolated oasis, where we could all spread out but yet be close enough together to form a neighborhood. Others joined as they could.
And oh how sweet it was.
There were no plans, no agendas. Just being together and allowing things to organically come together.
Before long, our convergence’s Facebook Page was a centerpoint of folks inviting the group over for campfires, potlucks, spontaneous presentations, group field trips, outdoor movie nights and even a full on concert!
And of course, everyone had time to do their own thing – hiking, shopping the Big Tent, or running errands.
We each brought a piece of ourselves – from hosting meet ups, organizing adventures, sharing talents, sharing knowledge, sharing toys, sharing food/beverages, sharing resources and of course sharing in friendship.
For over a week, our neighborhood thrived. Friendships to last a lifetime were forged. Future intentions for rendezvouses made.
I can’t even begin to convey the details of each individual day in a way that would more eloquently wrap it up than to just say – it was the total embodiment of everything we’ve ever dreamed of in a nomadic community.
Pure, awesome, epic magic.
Yesterday, us final stragglers pulled out of the Culdesac, and Xcampment now becomes a memory for the history books. A time we’ll all look back on fondly and remember we were there when it happened.
This is the start … and continuation of.. something extraordinary.
Future Xscapers Convergences
The intentions are to have Xscapers Convergences across the country throughout the year. You can get info on upcoming events at: Xscapers Convergence Page.
The next one is being organized in mid-April in the Hill Country of Texas. The event isn’t likely to line up with our travel intentions of being in Florida by then, however we highly recommend making a point to participate if you’re in the area. Springtime in this area of Texas is off the charts amazing.
Special Live Video Chat: Thursday!
We left the convergence heading the same direction as our friend Becky, and we thought it’d be fun to team up to present on a topic we couldn’t adequately cover on our own, but one often asked.
When: Thursday (tomorrow!), January 28 – 7:30pm MST / 9:30pm EST
Topic: Solo RVing
Join us with special guest, Becky Schade of www.interstellarorchard.co
Chris also started off solo (before he met me). Chris and Becky will present on the joys and challenges of traveling solo, and perhaps even finding romance on the road. And then the three of us will field viewer questions – so bring your questions about any nomadic topic. And this will be archived to YouTube afterwards if you can’t make it.
You will need to create a quick free account with Livestream to view the video cast. Just click the link and setup an account in advance… a couple minutes ahead of time should be sufficient, but you can do it anytime.