How Do I Get Ready for Burning Man? And Other Such Questions

It’s hard to get ready for Burning Man! That’s because preparing for Burning Man is really preparing for several dozen different but related kinds of things.

Every few years — maybe after just enough “Hey, what do I bring to Burning Man?” emails from dad — someone with an account on this blog remembers to collect all the various kinds of resources appropriate to the present Burning Man era and post them in one place for your convenience. Now is one of those times.

  • The obvious place to start is the Survival Guide. It’s essential reading for before you pack, and you should read it again when you’re done. You can find it in the envelope with your tickets, on the web, or as a PDF
  • Need a ride? Have buttspace and need gas money? There is a rideshare board for that.
  • This cool website called BurnerMap was made by Burners Like You™, and it puts you and your friends on a BRC map, so you can know where everybody lives. Requires a Facebook account.
  • Someone named Jessie, formerly named Mama J, created this awe-inspiringly detailed packing and planning spreadsheet and would like to share it with you.
  • There is this task management app called Asana that’s good for keeping organized when planning complicated things like camps, art projects, or even just personal packing. They made a whole Burning Man Asana thing because they get it. You might find it stress-relieving.
  • While you’re working on things, you might discover that you need help or collaborators. You’ll find those on Spark, our online collaboration… network… thing.
  • Of course there’s ePlaya, which stands for “electronic playa”. It is full of ancient Burning Man wisdom as well as other Burners with whom you might want to connect. If you use that website Reddit where people vote on each other’s karma or whatever, there’s also /r/BurningMan, which is also full of Burners.
  • The Playa Events Calendar will show you an exhaustive list of what’s prooooobably going on in Black Rock City each day of the week.
  • Finally, if you’re into just kinda wandering around — which is definitely the easiest way to have fun at Burning Man — you could plan a few destinations ahead of time using the 2017 Theme Camp listing.
  • Did I forget anything? It’s probably already covered in the Burning Man website’s Preparation section.

Okay, that ought to help. If your dad or dad-like figure is asking you how to prepare for Burning Man, just send along this link and be done with it. You have enough of your own packing to do.


Top photo by Andrew Wyatt

About the author: Jon Mitchell

Jon Mitchell

, a.k.a. Argus, was publisher of the Burning Man Journal, the Jackrabbit Speaks newsletter, and the Burning Man website from 2016 to 2019. He joined the Comm Team as a volunteer in 2010 and as year-round staff in 2014. He co-wrote a big story about spending 24 hours at the Temple of Juno in 2012. His first Burn was in 2008.

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