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To Camp or not to Camp….there’s really no question!

I camp…just sayin.

Before July 25th, I couldn’t say any of that. Before July 25th…I’d be like “no.” ???? Here’s how that changed:

You’d think that a guy that grew up in Alaska (19 years) of all places would have went camping or fishing or hunting while he was there right?  Not this guy. I was busy at the gym or the park. I didn’t miss the great outdoors because I didn’t know them. Ignorance is bliss.

When I went through Havasu City a couple months ago my good friends talked about going to the High Altitude Kampout in Flagstaff, AZ and how much fun it was. I determined then that I was going to go, but I wanted it to be a surprise. I called my buddy Cory and asked if he could help me make this happen. He was super stoked and agreed instantly. He said he’d bring a tent and everything I would need including a hug and  a sippy cup if I wanted.

Tucson to Flagstaff is about 5-6 hours in a bug. I have a tendency to goof off at stops and give in to my attraction to distraction so it takes me longer to get where I’m going.  I see cool stuff…I think. In any case me and my wife Carole loaded up the car and we headed out bright and early Friday morning. The guys in the Chirco shop gave my car the once over so the valves were adjusted, oilchange, carb sync, and checked all the vitals. It’s nice to have a shop with expert mechanics on hand. I appreciate all they do to keep my car on the road.

chirco vw parts

Woke up to a fire on the mountain.

The drive from Tucson to Phoenix is one of those trips folks who live here make often. You get desensitized to the amazingness. You find yourself sayin things like “Stupid awe inspiring random rock formation.”, “Dumb old historic civil war site.’, “Lame a_s area that the nationally covered haboobs start in.”  So I’ll just skip that part.

When we got to Phoenix is was 93 degrees at 9am! I think their low was 91! It’s a hot place in July that’s all there is to it. Coming out the other side though, you start to climb a little and things get better. None of the hills were challenging for my 1904cc so it was a nice easy cruise.

Coming into Camp Verde we saw some buses on the road finally. Turned out one of them was my good friend Mike Jordan…yeah yeah I know…get it out your system, I’ll wait……anyway he was with a group of Arizona Bus Club buses and we all ended up taking a break at a Camp Verde, AZ gas station. It was cool to chat and make introductions. We were only about 50 miles from Flagstaff so we took off.  The next stretch is beautiful! Nice climbs, trees, cool air, just gorgeous. It seemed to go faster than I wanted, but I was so excited to get there!!

chirco vw parts

Me and Michael Jordan discussing underwear…go figure.

chirco vw parts

Some AZ Bus Club folks

I pulled into the camp area and saw photographer Eric Arnold. He waved and took a pic and then I saw my buddy Jim Share!!  He’s one hairy mofo these days and he was thrilled to see me. We hugged a good hug and laughed. He’s one of the founding members of The Tucson Bus Mob and we miss him in Tucson bad. We kinda kept hugging which wasn’t odd at all. This is why I was there. Good people.  Jim pointed us to our camp area where all my Havasu friends were. Cory kept my secret so everyone was very very surprised. There was more hugging and some jumping up and down and someone threw some panties….ok it was me, but still it was awesome. The VW legend John Howard was there. Art, Bob, Mona, Launa, Denise, Bustoration Ronnie, Josh, Dave, Joe, and so many more, and that was just our camp (…you like that “our” camp??…yeah…I camp). After all the greetings we set up our tent and settled into the fun.

chirco vw parts

My spot at the Flagstaff KOA

vw parts

My car, My tent, My Zen

Eric Arnold Photography Bus...I call him Richey.  :)

Eric Arnold Photography Bus…I call him Richey. ????

Folks set up for fun

Folks set up for fun

vw parts

Cory’s world famous Screamin’ Eagle Bus

First of all, the Flagstaff KOA was amazing, and Jim and Janyel Share spared no accommodation to all what seemed like 600 of their guests. It was one of the best run shows I have been to. The facilities were very very nice and the people, well what can you say?…outstanding. There were camps everywhere! many folks came up in groups so it was almost regional. I would hang out in the Havasu City camp where I was staying but then get up and go visit “Tucson” often. Many of my Bus Mob buddies were there so it was fun to go and hang out there too. Peoria VW came up with their insane schwag trailer and Keith and his wife Suzanne camped as well. Its always fun hanging out with them. Great dealership btw. Look them up.

Lundes Peoria VW is awesome!!

Lundes Peoria VW is awesome!!

So cool to see so many camping...like me.

So cool to see so many camping…like me.

High Altitude...7000ft, yikes!

High Altitude…7000ft, yikes!

Juergen and I discussing his coolness.

Juergen and I discussing his coolness.

One of 2 things happened here.  :)

One of 2 things happened here. ????

I semi-swiped this GLI and drove around with the owner...loved it!!!

I semi-swiped this GLI and drove around with the owner…loved it!!!

One of the things I enjoyed most was just randomly walking into a camp, introducing myself and joining in conversation. Bus people are some of, if not the best people in this hobby. My cheeks hurt from laughing after a while. The entire scene was as hip as it gets. As the night went on there was additional festivities and VW bonding over a brew or two and yeah…even more laughter.

I camp.

Cory and Art and gold antenna ball gifts.

Cory and Art and gold antenna ball gifts.

THE John Howard...Co-creator of the  Jerome Jamboree and Buses By the Bridge...Legend

THE John Howard…Co-creator of the Jerome Jamboree and Buses By the Bridge…Legend

ahhhhh....camping....I do that.

ahhhhh….camping….I do that.

Nothing says camping like a giant demon dog stealing hearts.  :)

Nothing says camping like a giant demon dog stealing hearts. ????

That is pretty much how it went for two solid days!

Here’s my list of observations.

  • If it were possible for me to get even closer to my Havasu friends…it happened. ????
  • The showers were so nice I wanted to roll in dirt after I was done so I could take another shower.
  • I knew I was really “roughing it” when the pizza guy got there.
  • Crying myself to sleep is a normal camping experience.
  • Solving the worlds problems with people you truly care for is priceless, and
  • Spending a weekend with 600 of your new best friends is about as good as it gets.

So yeah…

I camp.

I can’t wait to do it again.

-lah

Here’s a little vid I made of the event.  Enjoy.

Chirco Reviews

Bill Ridenour
Bill Ridenour
20:54 27 Sep 20
Very knowledgeable parts people. They have everything one needs for a vintage VW.
Art Emser
Art Emser
15:25 12 Sep 20
best selection of aircooled vw parts in town. Also try Bugs n buggies if they dont have what you need
Lewis Mitchell
Lewis Mitchell
22:08 10 Sep 20
They have better availability on parts for 50 year old cars than some chain auto parts stores have on last year's cars. If you want stock replacement or to customize your bug go here.
Ron Johnston
Ron Johnston
10:08 06 Sep 20
Chirco automotive is your one stop shop for all things VW. They always have everything in stock and their prices are some of the most competitive in the industry. I love the fact that you could go in to just buy a five dollar part that you need for your old Volkswagen bug and joe The owner is behind the counter and treats you like you’re spending 1000 bucks. Always friendly they know everything in the world about Volkswagens. I’ve been getting parts and service from them for over 20 years and have never been let down. Heck one time I called and I needed a starter and it was close to closing time and they said they would stay open until I got there. And you got to go to the bug Tober fest. Keep up the good work Chirco automotive we need you we appreciate you and you guys are the best!!!!! ✌️
michael mcconnell
michael mcconnell
02:42 04 Jul 20
Awesome company! FedEx misplaced my order for a couple weeks and the owner himself called me to resolve the issue when it wasn't even their fault! They definitely have me as a customer from here on out. Thank you!
lhopf32 .
lhopf32 .
16:28 03 Jul 20
Chirco's staff have been great! Being a new Bug owner, I really appreciate the time they take to answer all my questions.
rocco lindsell
rocco lindsell
02:24 24 Jun 20
Great prices and awesome customer service.
Original X Man
Original X Man
22:25 26 May 20
I want to start off by giving a big THANKS to the Chirco staff. I have only had my Baja a little over a month now but they all have been very helpful in everything I’ve needed. If I didn’t understand something they explained it very well. I took the Baja from something that hadn’t run in two years or so and got it moving again, I couldn’t have done it with the help from them and the extensive parts selection they have.
2047tommy thompson
2047tommy thompson
02:24 25 May 20
Love this place. They have everything you need for VW air cooled engines
Brent Engelhart
Brent Engelhart
18:03 02 May 20
Best shop in town know what they are talking about and getting my big road ready love these guys and will continue to shop local.
Al Smith
Al Smith
01:46 09 Mar 20
Have purchased thousands of dollars of engine parts, brake parts, transaxle assembles and front end assembles. Great place to purchase your VW components. All of my parts were right on point. Were shipped to my to my delivery point. Can't go wrong with this business!!! Al
Derrick Ian
Derrick Ian
23:45 06 Jan 20
They have always had exactly what I have needed from my 1965 Baja, to my 1974 super, always willing to give advice, the staff knows their stuff, and they have a large stockpile of parts, the only place I get my VW parts.
James Horner
James Horner
22:41 21 Dec 19
Awesome place! They have everything for the old school VW! Staff is very friendly and knowledgeable!
David Taylor
David Taylor
18:27 20 Dec 19
These guys really know their stuff. Joe is very understanding and so are all of his staff..Highly recommended for anything to do with VW Bug parts!
John Konieczny
John Konieczny
17:43 14 Dec 19
Awesome service have all the parts you need
John Konieczny
John Konieczny
17:43 14 Dec 19
Awesome service have all the parts you need
Jessika McCoy
Jessika McCoy
19:44 19 Oct 19
They are so friendly and knowledgeable at Chirco! Definitely recommend for anyone who needs parts and great service.
Scott Woodburn
Scott Woodburn
20:34 16 Oct 19
These guys were great. Frank took almost two hours find the right parts I needed. Will definitely be going back for more parts and expertise.
J T W
J T W
05:32 24 Sep 19
These guys are great and very helpful! Prices are fair and parts are quality.
steve mcdaniel
steve mcdaniel
03:44 27 Aug 19
The best place to get your VW repaired..
steve mcdaniel
steve mcdaniel
03:44 27 Aug 19
The best place to get your VW repaired..
Logn Carter
Logn Carter
05:19 20 Aug 19
Great service, reliable and very fast. I was in and out in about 10 minutes even when I ordered quite a bit.
Sandy Edens
Sandy Edens
14:49 09 Aug 19
I went here for a Volkswagen car show also wslked around in store very clean lots of parts and employees were awesome
Sandy Edens
Sandy Edens
14:49 09 Aug 19
I went here for a Volkswagen car show also wslked around in store very clean lots of parts and employees were awesome
Mike Baldwin
Mike Baldwin
19:22 21 Jun 19
Front end rebuild, windshield replacement was a good experience with one of the best shops I’ve been to. Safety issues were found and resolved on my 1954 VW. John, you’re the best!
Mike Baldwin
Mike Baldwin
19:22 21 Jun 19
Front end rebuild, windshield replacement was a good experience with one of the best shops I’ve been to. Safety issues were found and resolved on my 1954 VW. John, you’re the best!
Mary & Terry Toth
Mary & Terry Toth
17:21 25 May 19
Very good people to work with they really know there stuff I recommend highly Terry & Mary
George Russell
George Russell
17:30 23 May 19
Regardless of whatever else I've had for cars I've always had at least one VW. Reliable and easy to work on. Chirco is without question the best place around Tucson to get quality VW parts and service.
joe gardner
joe gardner
19:38 07 May 19
i live in hawaii and its hard to get parts. the guys at chirco has made my experience much easier.. thank you guys.
Kurt van opstal
Kurt van opstal
02:57 01 May 19
I buy some times parts from. Them. For. My company fun buggy, Punta cana, Dominican Republic. Making tours with beach buggy's. I like there good service and quick shipping
Jeremy Mate
Jeremy Mate
20:13 07 Apr 19
I love chirco Automotive, great people, great shop and awesome showroom!!
Jason
Jason
23:37 27 Mar 19
Awesome people!!! And they have had everything I've needed so far
Doninik L
Doninik L
05:01 17 Mar 19
Best place in Tucson to get you vw fix. They are knolagable and can help you out with just about anything you need
Britten Rosenberg
Britten Rosenberg
00:32 10 Mar 19
Being a VW onwer and live very close buy I have been there a lot. Staff is very knowledgeable and are very friendly. Joe the owner is a good guy and will help you get what you need.
Robert Barracco
Robert Barracco
04:07 03 Mar 19
Nice people Quick Service had what I needed very good experience
Tim Miller
Tim Miller
20:33 10 Feb 19
Great service, very helpful staff. Great prices.
Randy Best
Randy Best
00:26 16 Jan 19
Old aircooled dub paradise. I restore old VWs and this place always has what I need.
Adam Kowalczyk
Adam Kowalczyk
20:41 08 Jan 19
Plenty of V W dune buggy parts, and lots of knowledge.
Peter Sollenbarger
Peter Sollenbarger
02:35 08 Dec 18
Joe Chirco is a great guy with a great team to help him out. they are very knowledgeable about all VW and more.
Keith Rae
Keith Rae
19:02 18 Oct 18
Awesome place. Great staff. Usually have what you need
Dillon Faulkner
Dillon Faulkner
21:43 26 Apr 18
Plethora of parts for any buggy needs. Y’all are dumb if you can’t figure out what your own toy needs to get up and running. Can’t blame a parts store for your ignorance.
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