Black Rock City 2015 Traffic Update

We are experiencing significant traffic delays due to slow vehicles on Highway 447. Estimated delays are up to 8 hours to reach Gerlach from Wadsworth. We recommend participants wait in Reno or elsewhere for several hours until the congestion is cleared.

For your own safety, if you’re stopped on Highway 447, please remain in your vehicle. And do not park on the shoulder of Interstate 80 — find an off ramp and park on a side road.

We will update this message with new information as soon as it becomes available.

You can also hear updates by tuning in to BMIR or by following @bmantraffic on Twitter.

[UPDATE: 8/31/15 2:00am]

At this time, the drive from Wadsworth to Gerlach is taking about 5 1/2 hours. Stay safe out there!

[UPDATE: 8/31/15 9:00am]

Travel times between Wadsworth and Gerlach dropped below 3 hours sometime between 5 a.m. and 6 a.m. and we lifted recommended driving restrictions on Highway 447. C’mon out!

Top photo by Kara Newhouse (Creative Commons license)

About the author: Burning Man Project

Burning Man Project

The official voice of the Burning Man organization, managed by Burning Man Project's Communications Team.

38 Comments on “Black Rock City 2015 Traffic Update

  • Phoenix says:

    I’m on the Burner Bus tomorrow. If you know about the buses being delayed because of the traffic, it would be great to include that in the blog. :-)

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    • Brandon says:

      On the bus currently. There was no delay, although the traffic backed us up quite a bit. I was set to leave 8am and I’m still on the way to BRC.

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    • Owl says:

      I suppose there will be no delay at least for the Reno busses. In the last hours (while waiting in the long line 30 miles before Gerlach), over a dozen busses passed by towards Reno on the free southbound lane.

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  • Spenser says:

    Sitting here behind an Anal Leprechaun and wondering if anyone can please explain how “slow vehicles” result in 8 hours of pulsing traffic? Just hoping for some details…

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  • Shawna woosley says:

    Please be clear in the am we have school busses with children on 447 in both directions

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  • Jon Emal says:

    When are the webcams going to be up and running ???

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  • Kim Rees says:

    More traffic info please. Thanks

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  • Wolf says:

    Something fishy is happening, this cannot just be traffic. What weird torture experiment is this? Please let us peacefully enter. This is very hard. And those schoolbuses are gonna be screwed tomorrow!

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  • peepaw says:

    Who’s running the internet?

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  • RedPanda says:

    Anyone heard anything about checkpoints?

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  • Hensmith says:

    We were just outside of Fernly around ten this morning and saw many emergency vehicles, including an ambulance. Our delay from that point was about five hours to Gerlach. We were completely stopped for over an hour more than once. Safe travels everyone!

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  • Dani Bee says:

    On the 447 about 60 miles from the Burn & we have been parked for close to an hour… It looked like there may have been an accident, emergency vehicles have come & gone but still no movement & too far away to get gate radio… Drive safely everyone

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  • Leia says:

    Would it help if I got out and pushed?

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  • Eric says:

    Why so little information being posted about traffic? An update would be nice. There are more than a few in Reno now wondering if it’s worth trying to make it there tonight or just bag it and come tomorrow.

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  • Alpha says:

    Glad I went in 2011. Good luck to those making their way this year. Travel calm, travel safe.

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  • Tmack says:

    If it helps making a decision…our situation: got on 447 a bit before 10pm, it’s been 3.5 hours and we are now stopped again 30 miles before Gerlach…

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  • Tiny says:

    Every Uhaul I ever rented would nearly overheat or had some problem restarting. Put 100 or 1000 of those in an 8 hour traffic jam and I’d be surprised if more than 80% make the full journey.

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    • Tiny says:

      Protip: If your rented box truck doesn’t start back up, tap the starter motor several times with a hammer. This is more of a problem on the way off the playa because the dust fucks with it. The starter motor is usually located under then engine and is a metal cylinder.

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      • Roger Underhaul says:

        Folks THIS^ (tapping the end of the starter thingy) is EXCELLENT advice, and it applies to EVERYWHERE. It can help you avoid tow bills (to the repair shop) and simply get you home from the store.

        Learn where your starter is exactly (what it looks like) in your vehicle and if it ever does nothing when it should be cranking, have someone crank it while you tap the starter. It might work. I don’t know why it works, but is has for me.

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      • Slim says:

        Also, if you’re driving a more modern rig, the dust can clog one or more sensors and trigger ‘limp home’ mode. It’ll kick in around Empire, like it did me. Then it’s a $300+ tow to Reno on a flatbed. But you can go in limp-mode all the way to the 80, you just won’t go more than 30mph. I don’t know if you can stay off the 80 all the way to Reno, but you should if you can.

        Needless to say, limp-home mode sucks and it’s almost always dangerous and not a serious engine problem.

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  • figlet says:

    we were 83 miles from brc at about 6pm. waiting outside the gates in the multi lane line now.

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  • Playa Cat says:

    Turned around & spent the night at Pyramid Lake rather than staying stuck in the traffic line. Awoke to a beautiful sunrise across the lake. So far smooth sailing & open road without another car in site on 447 about 20 miles south of Gerlach. Headed HOME )'( Safe Travels everyone.

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  • James says:

    I’m in the 447 parking lot right now and a group of women in the RV in front of us has just slaughtered a sheep. I don’t know if it was a wild sheep or a stray from a farm, but they’re now cooking it on the side of the road. Are these wiccas? They have dread locks and nose rings and neck tattoos.

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  • JVc says:

    I believe this is the first time that pulsing has been tried during entry, seems to have not worked out so well. If the pulsing was occurring on highway 447, does that mean it was a law enforcement decision, since Burning Man wouldn’t have authority to patrol a state highway? Either way, this is why I never try to get it during the first 12-18 hours. Always a shitshow, but this year seems to have taken it to a new level.

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  • Lana Rad says:

    Leaving Reno in an hour.. Can anyone tell me what’s the traffic likeleading to Gurloch? Is it backed up? What is the waiting forcast?

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  • Tommy Salsa says:

    How’s it looking today (Tuesday) everyone?

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  • Jimmy in Dallas says:

    Sitting on the beach wishing we were there. But NO! Unable to get tickets on any of the sales. System seems corrupt. Attended 12 years & volunteered 7. Not this year! We are going to reconsider this whole thing. What a shame.

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  • Black Rocker says:

    Beware Police check point after Nixon on 447 with dogs.

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  • Korn says:

    Any traffic updates?

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  • Surf dog says:

    Any updates on police checkpoints?

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  • Jimbo says:

    Why in the world would anyone choose to drive out to that alkali flat, wait in all that traffic and endure all that Playa dust (and pay 400 bucks for the “experience”) to hang out with society’s misfits? Don’t get the attraction to any of it. I’ll sleep in my bed tonight free of dust and free of that obnoxious techno beat.

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