2018 Taos Vanlife Gathering
Hosted & written by Lisa Miriam Jacobs.
Last August, I had the pleasure of co-hosting the Vanlife Diaries Gatheringin Taos, New Mexico. The southwest is where I grew up, so coming back there always feels like coming home. Nomads traveled from all over to join us for a weekend of sharing stories and having fun. We created an epic community of folks from all over the country, of all ages, and in all types of vehicles. Our temporary neighborhood on wheels was full of vans, buses, RVs, box trucks, trailers, tiny houses, trucks with rooftop tents, and Subarus.
The venue was Hotel Luna Mystica, a cosmic vintage trailer park in the middle of the high desert, surrounded by mountains, vivid sunsets, and star-filled skies. This was an epic backdrop for a weekend full of good times and making memories.
On Friday, attendees were greeted with RXBars, Kettle Chips, and a ROVA Magazine featuring stories of many within the vanlife community. Kathleen of Tiny House, Tiny Footprint and I greeted the group and we shared an eclectic potluck dinner centered around a keg provided by Ratio Beerworks. We enjoyed homemade kombucha and ate locally grown food and cooked on a Chilean-style wok. Everyone gathered around the fire pit to play music and tell stories.
On Saturday, Seven Gray served tea and the group was led in a yoga class by Adriana Luna. Adriana catered the yoga class to our nomadic lifestyle and we all were feeling the free-spirited vibes as we omm'ed together on the grass. Then Julia Fernandez de Maez hosted a dynamic belly dancing class.
Angie Fernandez hosted a sustainability class where she showed us how she lives out of her vehicle sustainably with minimal waste.
Happy Hour was hosted by the ladies of The Vanlife App and featured several flavors of the most delicious vegan almond-based dip, Bitchin' Sauce. We had an open dialogue about our experiences on the road and why we choose this alternative lifestyle.
The raffle was an exciting event attended by everyone at the gathering. We raffled thousands of dollars of gear from incredible brands like Cotopaxi, ICEMULE, Nomadix, Rocksolar, Aeropress, One Eleven Watches, Coalatree, Rome Industries, MIZU, Lems Shoes, Scott James Jewelry, Carteo Handmade, Gnarly Nomad Brand, LuminAID, Hobby Life, Lyn Sweet, and more! There was a lot of excitement and the energy was high as the lucky winners won their sweet prizes!
Then we toured each other's rigs and some of us enjoyed the bluegrass festival happening next door at Taos Mesa Brewing.
On Sunday morning we had a chill-out yoga session and everyone started to exchange contact information and say goodbye. Some of us didn't want the weekend to end, and the gathering continued for another day at some nearby hot springs.
We raised money for the local nonprofit Rivers & Birds. And we're so grateful that Kate Alfin Johnson took these gorgeous 35mm photos of the weekend!