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Burning Man 2011

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kane_w +

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Burning Man 2011
First time heading to burning man in september, really looking forward to a completely different experience well and truly out of my comfort zone.

anyone been before that would like to share some helpful hints?
Balls Deep +

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Went in 1996. It's not the type of place you can just rock up to and party. Read the survival guides, get a crew, big rv, wind/sun shade. Loads of water, and an open mind. I know it's been over 15 years but im sure it's still the same.

Best 7 days of my life. USA knows how to party!
Funky Dung +

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I went in 2008 and 2010 and will no doubt end up going again (need at least a year off between trips though!). It's an amazing experience but yes, seriously don't just buy a ticket and think you're going to a fun festival. Read all the documentation for virgins on burningman.com thoroughly before even deciding if you really want to go, and then set about figuring out what you want to do for it, and how you're going to do it.

I spent eight months planning it last year, teaming up with 25 people from three continents and working our arses off to create our theme camp. It's an intense amount of hard work for months before you go, it costs thousands of dollars and is intense hard work when you're there too. But ultimately, it's an incredibly rewarding thing to go through - you make really close bonds with people and get to spend a week living without any of the shit that makes up day-to-day modern life (money, time, status, etc). Just make sure you're really up for putting a lot into it, because the more you put in, the more you get out.

If you've haven't already got a group of seasoned Burning Man folk to go with, get on the eplaya (on burningman.com) and see if you can find a regular group or theme camp to join. You won't survive on your own, and it'd be awful to try and arrange everything you need (transport, power, shade, kitchen, food, water, tools, garbage disposal, etc) if you don't live in the USA and have never been before. You need to be taken to Burning Man the first time, unless you're a very rich, very well organised camp who are prepared to figure it all out for yourselves.

In the coming months you'll see plenty of posts on eplaya asking for participants in different theme camps, so have a read, get in touch with anyone who sounds interesting, and join them - that's my advice! You'll have so much more fun meeting a load of new people and getting stuck into a project with them, and they'll likely have many of the essentials covered - you'll probably be able to chip into the camp costs, help out setting up and operating whatever it is they do throughout the festival, and not have to stress too much about everything else.

But yeah, the main thing is don't go into it lightly. Start thinking seriously about it now, and definitely don't underestimate how much hard work it's going to be. If you just want to have a fun party, go to a regular music festival where you just have to turn up with a bunch of money and all the entertainment's laid on for you. If you're up for months of hard work for one of the most amazing experiences of your life, get stuck into Burning Man.
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moojins +

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I went in 2010 as a virgin, had an amazing time. I was thoroughly underprepared, but fortunately I had teamed up with a stalwart group of burners that picked up my slack.

Read the guides, have an itinerary ready, team up with a theme camp and a group of people travelling there (you can check facebook groups and the burners board for info on RV shares and so on).

It's expensive, supplies and what not. Be sure to carry some cash to and from the burn. It won't do you much good at the theme camps, but for ice, coffee, favours from your travelling crew, and other supplies, it's handy. Also some camps do a week long lunch/dinner thing that you subscribe to for a small fee paid at the event. I did dinners with one of the dress-up theme camps and it pretty much saved my life.

Take lots of water, take baby wipes, take goggles (good goggles, test them out before, you will need them), take a bike if you can manage, take something to give out to other burners as gifts (alcohol and glow sticks are great), take glow sticks to light yourself up at night to ensure that you don't get run down, take those electrolyte packs that you mix with water (again, probably saved my life).

A good water bottle should be at your side at all times, no exceptions. I carried around two canteens, one for alcohol and one for water. With all the dancing and walking in the desert you will be doing, you need to stay hydrated. The weather is brutal: scorching in the day and freezing during the night. Take a thermal jumper. Take two thermal jumpers. I cannot emphasise how fucking cold it gets there at night. It's a great excuse to snuggle with some nearby girlies though.

Take condoms.

A friend told me that party medication in the United States is the cat's PJs. If you want to get on some while at the burn, do so in a discreet way, and if anyone comes and asks you for stuff or offers you stuff and you get a strange vibe off them, politely decline. There were undercovers when I was there - "Hello, are you able to provide me with some ecstasy please?". Saying that though, there are more high people at a burn than anywhere else you've been before. Also remember: be safe.

Don't talk politics or anything like that with the other burners. Go there with an open mind. Even if you aren't a spiritual person, try to spend a bit of time with people who are, talk about chakras, give meditation a go, get a healing full body massage, shag a granola chick.

There's a certain quality in burners that you probably won't fully understand until you are there for a few days. But always act with the wellbeing of your fellow burners in mind, never be selfish, if you see something you are unsure about be sure to ask, don't be a spectator only a radical participant etc. (it's all in the guide).

Have a good burn!

Last edited by moojins: 01-Feb-11 at 06:37am

kane_w +

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thanks all good advice.

Im lucky Im heading over with a large crew mostly from the san fran area most of whom are 5+ year burners....i just booked my RV, shopping list is in draft format, were in initial concept stage for our themed camp and im looking forward to getting involved....
Tension +

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Theres a small crew of us going from Perth this year, pretty much all virgins so there's lots of organising to be done. Fuckloads by the sounds of it. We're all up for the challenges though and have open minds about the burn culture.

Need to go check out the eplaya you guys mentioned.
hey guys, big gulps huh? well... cya later!
Tension +

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Been reading some great stuff on the burner forums, it was overwhelming at first but starting to realise that a lot of the advice given on there is aimed at complete muppets who have no idea how to camp properly or look after themselves.

My focus has turned away from the party/music festival aspect and 100% on the self sufficiency, preparation, LNT and survival aspects. Seems like if you get that part right everything else will fall into place.
hey guys, big gulps huh? well... cya later!
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[quote= My focus has turned away from the party/music festival aspect and 100% on the self sufficiency, preparation, LNT and survival aspects. Seems like if you get that part right everything else will fall into place.[/QUOTE]

agreed
SoulWhiteMan +

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I know this is a long shot, but if anyone has a spare ticket and cannot go, pleas PM me
Lukey +

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hey guys

we are camping with subset supper club in the french quarter
come on down and say hi

i think this map shows where we will be



btw will be hanging out in SF from 21st aug - sept 13th
if anyone is up for hanging let me know

also tip - SF electronic music festival is on 8-11th september
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worla +

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anyone going this year?
i ate all your bee's.....
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Heaps of people .. Mostly me but.
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Salon K +

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Yeah we're heading over. Got crew coming from Melbourne, Brisbane and London and meeting in the middle!
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Fourthstate +

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My girlfriend & I will be going for our first time this year.
Dont really have a crew, just a few people we know who are also going so after reading this its prob a good idea to bunch up.
Got an RV sorted for the 2 of us.

So anyone else going and keen to meet up let me know. Cant wait!
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Woo! Heading over with a friend. We missed out on hiring an RV so have a car and we will just tent it up!
I'm a virgin burner but he has been before, nervous excited and have NO idea what to expect - I cannot wait!!!
Funky Dung +

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Seriously, read everything on BurningMan.com so you know what to expect - not long to go now and you've got lots of work to do! Turn up unprepared and you'll be in for a very shit time.
"Now stop, collaborate and listen,
Ice is back with a pound of bacon"
nortie_gess +

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Yeh survival guide just popped up online.
I'm going to have to just do a massive shop once I get to Reno. It's at the tail end of a 5 week holiday.
Apart from everything listed in guides any thing else you'd recommend?
worla +

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EEEEEEEEEPPPPPPPP it's getting close!
i ate all your bee's.....
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YEEEAAAHHHH BOYEE! Super excited for this. I leave Sunday and feel like a kid before Christmas! A bit nervous too sure, but we're pretty prepared so we should be okay.

Fourthstate there is going to be a bunch of us together. We're aiming for 7:30-8 G-H. The camp name is Pirate Pete's Animal Retreat and will be decorated with inflatable animals and one of the RVs has European flags on it. Keep an eye out dude and if you spot us say hi.
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It wasn't nearly as bad as I expected but we were prepared. I think you need to be but I also think there's a lot of scare mongering that goes on. Cost a bomb and nearly did me in but can't wait to go back! My wife has taken up hula hooping lessons because my jaw was constantly on the ground from all the hotties around!
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