Wagon Station Encampment In Joshua Tree

Categories: Homes / Dwellings, TinyHouse

The high desert north of Joshua Tree National Park is a trippy place, not just because of the sere, strange, boulder-strewn landscape (though there’s that), but also because of the psychedelic mix of artists, musicians, Marines and their kin drawn to the nearby 29 Palms base, seekers, seers, desert rats, and L.A. burnouts. Abandoned “jackrabbit” homesteads are scattered like Yahtzee dice thrown by a toddler, and unexpected art installations show up in the darndest places.

Right in the middle of this mostly unstirred stew is the Wagon Station Encampment, a novel project created by artist and thinker Andrea Zittel. It’s a collection of 12 tiny “cabins” available each spring and fall via invitation from Zittel. She calls them stations, but they’re not much more than slightly-larger-than-body sized tin boxes, each with a comfy mattress and a place to hang your hat. Retreat from the world in one? No, not really. The Encampment gives you a place to sleep without fear of scorpions crawling into your bag, but little more. The idea is to push you out into the rugged scape and see what happens.

And also to have you mix with your fellow campers in and about the communal kitchen.

“The encampment is an intimate community,” writes Zittel, “so we look for people who are thoughtful, considerate and contributors. Ideally you will be a kitchen cleaner, a cool chest organizer, and you won’t mind sometimes making extra coffee to share with others in the morning.”

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