Halcyon’s Unofficial Tips & Tricks #1

So you’ve devoured BurningMan.com and memorized the Survival Guide?

Now that you know how to avoid death, dehydration and dismemberment, are there any other tips for making Burning Man even more amazing?

Youbetcha! Several years ago I started recording collections of things I’ve learned over many years of participation. (This will be my 14th Burn.)


(NOTE: I’m told that water trucks contain non-potable water and should not be used in the way described in the video. And ALL of these tips are solely the views of Halcyon and do not represent the The Burning Man Organization or Major League Baseball. Also, “Gifting It” is no longer available at that URL, but can be found in the Burning Man marketplace.)

Stay tuned for more tips! Have some tips? Share in the comments!

About the author: John "Halcyon" Styn


Halcyon is a 21-year Burning Man participant and co-founder of Pink Heart camp. He is author of "Love more. Fear less." and producer of the Burning Man short film, "The Pink Path." He's won Webby awards for his over-the-top personal site & his "Love On Demand" video podcast HugNation.com. Halcyon co-founded the San Diego based "1st Saturdays" homeless outreach program based on Burning Man Principles and coaches people how to be radically self expressed in the default world. You can find his full Playa Tips & Tricks series at www.PlayaPrinciples.com

13 Comments on “Halcyon’s Unofficial Tips & Tricks #1

  • Snow says:

    Thank you for those great tips and tricks, Halcyon. And you were very humorous, too! ;)

    I’d like to add that women looking for that ideal way to urinate could also consider using a pee funnel.

    Even guys can use them too. The funnel inserts into a bottle, so the size of the bottle’s opening is no longer an issue. :)

    Store the funnel in a plastic bag when you’re done, and viola!

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  • Epiphany Starlight says:

    what??? soapy water on the playa???? hmmmmmm….

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  • Halcyon says:

    @Snow – Good suggestion! I’ve heard great things about the pee funnels.

    @Epiphany – Yup, the water truck should not be used in this way.

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  • Epiphany Starlight says:

    Halcyon, thanks for your comment. I realize your many years of attendance have seen significant changes and ages ago it probably didn’t make much of an impact as now with 50,000+ participants. I love your videos and appreciate your enthusiasm.

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  • Bear says:

    watched this before last years burn (my 1st). wet naps and piss buckets made everything… work. plus i might have been unaware of the piss bucket concept without this video, which could have lead to some very unhappy drunken searches for water. thanks!

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  • DBell says:

    Great stuff. For more check out my facebook group camp shrunken heads.

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  • DBell says:

    Oh, loved the socks/water truck part! I am gonna try water shoes this year, my 7th.

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  • I like the new sock thing, I’m buying new socks just to keep my feet in fair condition on the playa. Last year, I did alright with my feet, I kept my boots on most of the time. They didn’t get a chance to dry out, also used lotion on them when I got a chance. This will be my 7th year, I learn something new each time. Enjoy

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  • Lady Lane says:

    Yeah, the Water Tender thing for a shower isn’t a good idea. I work for the Forest Service & work on a Fire team. You don’t want to know what kind of things “grow” in Non=Potable tanks….not even to mention where the water is drafted from…

    It does feel refreshing, but not worth the bacteria & little critters that can make your event not so fun in the future….

    Halcyon ~ You are the PINK BOMB for doing all that you do to help folks! This will be my 5th year I think…will have to see if I can find you this year

    ~ Burn On Friends ~

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  • jujubean says:

    How ’bout emphasize “NO Spectators”? Radical Self Reliance. Radical Participation.
    How ’bout emphasize Don’t recruit. Why is it so many people insist on dragging apathetic people to BM who know nothing about it? They end up standing on the sidelines (or lightless at night in front of my bike) behind a camera judging and spectating. Diluting our incredible city with banality. This year the first 3 ticket tiers were sold out in the first day… never before has that happened. Scalpers? Yes. Muggles promoting BM as the world’s best drug-infested sex party? Yes. Oops, there goes the magic. =( LIB you’re next.

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  • Professor Tawdry says:

    Ive had alot of problems getting hot melt glued items to stay in the heat. As soon as its exposed to 95+ degree heat it starts to soften and delaminate- and suddenly your artbike it dropping moop all over the place. It also requires a clean surface so you really have to get the playa dust off if you are doing last minute fixes at BC. Have had much better luck with 5 minute epoxies, superglue and best of all, mechanical fasteners. Those self tapping sheet metal screws are the business! Also for items that need minor sewing repairs or attaching objects to fabrics, you can use galvanized picture hanging wire (its its own needle!) Dont forget to twist the wire back on itself and cut off the excess.

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  • Zorsha says:

    it’s been strongly recommended NOT to chase behind the water trucks and use them for showers, as there are chemicals and other substances in that water that can make you sick. NOT a good idea. You can buy a portable camp shower for very cheap.

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  • Samar says:

    soal ro avaz mikonam, chon tairjh midam ba kasi ke dar chenin sharayeti bashe addi raftar konam va hich harfi darbareye bimarish nazanam. be in soal javab midam ke agar khodam in sharayet ro dashtam chi kar mikardam; 3 ro entekhab mikardam.

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