Tips for the Playa
If this is your first time camping at Burning Man, and to refresh your memory on important logistic factors, please read First-Timer's Guide and the Survival Guide.
WINDSPIRIT'S "INSIDER TIPS" FOR LIFE ON THE PLAYA:
So you've gone over that list posted on the Burning Man site fifteen million times. Here are some additional precious pieces of advice:
1. YOUR WATER BOTTLE is truly vital – carry a spare if you tend to loose things, and especially, have a pouch/backpack/strap/whatever that allows you to have your water with you at all times!
2. BICYCLES: This year Shamandome is including use of a bicycle with you camp fee. In order to prevent your playa bike from being stolen or "borrowed" you must bring your own lock, keyless number code locks are best and something, anything, to decorate your bike with. Once you park it amongst 500 similar looking bikes, all equally dusty, it will be impossible to recognize yours unless you have done something unusual to it. Plush toys, fake flowers, ribbons, balloons…you name it!
3. LIGHTS for yourselves AND your bike are vital at night so that you can see and be seen and avoid crashes. The blinking front lights for bikes are great, for you a blinking headlight, and many burners like to have a good supply of glowsticks to wear at night.
4. SOLAR SHOWERS BAGS: Usually one large shared between 2 people is plenty – you’ll be surprised by how little water it takes to get reasonably clean!
5. “HUGGIES” WIPES are a burner’s best friend - get a large pack!!!
6. CONTACT LENSES: Carry plenty of saline solution, and spares. Having all the sand of the playa in your eyes for a week does not make for a good Burning Man experience!!!!
7. FOR YOUR TENTS: we will provide a SHADE structure only, on a first come, first served basis – that means plenty of wind and dust will still affect your tent, and your belongings inside of it!
It is VITAL that you bring the appropriate amount of heavy duty stakes for your tent, the big fat ones, plastic or steel, and a mallet to drive them in, or your tent might fly to the opposite side of the playa!
Also, bring a couple of heavy duty contractor garbage bags in which to place your bedding during daytime, and anything else you need to protect from the dust – dust storms will happen, guaranteed!!!
8. YOUR SKIN AND YOUR LIPS will start cracking as soon as you hit the playa. Make sure to bring plenty of moisturizers, foot cream, hand cream, chapstick, sun cream, and a hat!!!
9. DUST MASKS or bandannas will protect your lungs during dust storms. Take this very seriously, as the alkaline dust of the playa can cause serious long-time respiratory problems. If your lungs are on the delicate side, consider purchasing a respirator (from hardware stores, the 3M will do, it will say “for sprays and chemical fumes” or something similar), and they happen to be much more comfortable to wear than the little white masks anyway!
10. WORK GLOVES: bring one or two pairs, the thick brown cotton ones from hardware stores are just fine – we will all occasionally have to pitch in on some kind of “structural task” and all will help Sunday and Monday to take down the structures together.
11. PLATES , GLASES, FLATWARE – no need to bring you own, we have enough for all.
12. CRAVINGS : we all have them. If you have a favorite snack or food you can’t live without, make sure to bring it along – no corner delis on the playa!
13. Last but not least, YOUR GOGGLES will not only keep all that dust out of your gorgeous and precious eyes, but they are also you major fashion statement, a true reflection of the Shamanista you are deep deep down!!!
I remember bitterly regretting showing up for my first burn with a pair of cheapo plastic goggles from the hardware store – do not make the same mistake!!!!
So now...get ready, we’ll have a fabulous time!!!!
Anything I forgot? For the “Veteran Burners” of you please share your secrets with us!!!!
Emergency TP, backpack, a great water bottle, goggles and mask for the big blow, warm clothing for nights dancing till dawn and a costume that is beyond your wildest dreams. Air mattress, a TENT that zips tight, no open netting you can't close or you'll have 2 inches of dust inside sometimes. Huge garbage bags to put EVERYTHING in before the big blow, you'll be so happy to have a dustless pillow right on time. Head strap lights, a solar bag shower. Many large ziplocs (if you have an ipod or cellphone, they should be inside multiple ziplocs to avoid dust).
JEWEL’S BURNING MAN PACKING LIST:
MEDICAL & HYGIENE:
- Nasal Spray
- Vitamins / airborne
- Bandaids & Neosporin
- Birth control, condoms, lube
- Inhaler (bring extra)
- Hairbands & barrettes
- Toothbrush & paste & mouthwash
- Vitamin e cream
- Glasses, sunglasses, case (if contact lenses, bring lots of extras & solution)
- Sunblock – SPF 45
- Dr Bronners/soap
- Leave-in conditioner
- Nail clippers
- Baby wipes
- Toilet paper
- Sunshower (if want it)
- Yeast infection & UTI pills (just in case)
- Extension cord & powerstrip (if camp has elec.)
- Battery light for tent
- Pee funnel (for girls)
- Duct tape
- Air or foam mattress
- Sleeping bag or two comforters
- Foot warmers
- Pocketknife or leatherman
- Grommet kit
- Sewing kit
- Bathmats for outside tent to keep dust down
- Safety pins
- Trash bags
- Batteries (9V, AAA, AA)
- Camelbak or Nalgene
- Walkie talkie (not essential)
- Camera (extra battery & memory) in ziploc
- Surgical masks (3M 9211 are awesome)
- Tent (no mesh)
- Rebar (for tent stakes, etc)
- Tennis balls/etc for ends of rebar
- Shade structure / tarps
CLOTHING & STYLE:
- (Toys/firespinning – toys, wicks, fuel, etc as needed)
- Make up & glitter (moop-free)
- Mirror – full length if possible
- Clothing rack if appropriate for space
- Warm night clothing (incl thermals)
- Fake fur jacket (or other warm coat)
- Socks – lots
- Fun undies (& other clothing if want) for day – with cotton liner
- Pajama pants
- Ears, wings, wigs, horns, capes, tails, hipscarves, etc
- Tevas for around camp
- Shitkickers (or other comfortable boots)
FOOD & FOOD-RELATED:
- Emergen-C or Gatorade
- Water – 2+ gal/person/day (1gal bottles can be used for pee; 2gal bottles can be used for garbage)
- Can Opener
- Plate, cup, hiking silverwear
- Liquor & mixer
- No glass jars or outer packaging
- Big bag of trail mix
- Fruit that won’t spoil, canned fruit
FOR DEFAULT WORLD
- Phone & charger
- Regular clothing
- Wallet, money, ID
- Plane info
- House keys
- BM ticket
- Emergency contact info
- Paper, books, pens, crayons
- Keys for container locks