• Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
  • Image Credit: Murilee Martin
The stereotypical vehicle of the San Francisco Bay Area hippie who follows a jam band all around the country is the Type 2 Volkswagen Transporter, preferably the pre-1968 models. In reality, though, actual hippies (the kind without trust funds) travel the country in vehicles more like today's Junkyard Gem: a big Detroit van. Here's a good example of a real-world hippie van, spotted a few dozen miles from the site of the notorious Altamont Free Concert.



The murals are perfect, with dancing flower-headed fertility goddesses, hearts, peace symbols, everything a proper hippie van requires.



Grateful Dead iconography hasn't changed much since the early 1970s, but the heavy sun-bleaching on this dancing-bears Deadhead sticker— no doubt purchased on Shakedown Street at some early-1990s Dead show — suggests that this Dodge stayed in the employ of jam-band aficionados for a period going back decades.



I had photographed a few other vans like this during my years of junkyard crawling, including an ex-military '73 Chevrolet G30 and a genuine Volkswagen (a Vanagon, unfortunately, not an earlier Type 2) covered with a vivid Steal Your Face paint job.



How many 90-minute tapes with one song only were listened to on this extremely 1980s Audiovox unit?



It's just a brokedown palace now.

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